Christina Aguilera felt restricted about what she could do vocally on her first album.
The Dirrty singer shot to fame with her 1999 self-titled debut album, which featured singles such as Genie in a Bottle and What a Girl Wants.
However, she revealed in a video for Allure that her vocals were “micromanaged” on that record and she was only able to break free from those restrictions and show off her full range with 2001’s Lady Marmalade.
“I was told on my first record so many times: ‘You can’t sing like that, you have to hold back. It’s not okay to ad-lib like that, to do runs like that, to slide into vocals.’ I was so micromanaged as to what I could do on that first album,” she shared. “(The Lady Marmalade video) was a full circle moment of not only the look and visual, but also yes, getting to vocally just give and play.”
Lady Marmalade was a collaboration between Christina, Pink, Mya and Lil’ Kim and featured on the Moulin Rouge! soundtrack.
Elsewhere in the video, the 42-year-old revealed other issues she had in the early days of her career. Music executives wanted her to change her name because they felt her Latin surname was too hard for people to pronounce.
“It always just did not sit well with me. I did not feel O.K. changing it or becoming some random made-up word,” she stated. “I wanted to be who I was and that’s Aguilera, it’s always been who I was, it’s a part of my roots and my background and a part of who I am. So, I never wanted to shy away from that, even if it was hard for people to pronounce. Coming up, I definitely stuck to my guns and did not want to change who I am.”
– Cover Media