Christina Unplugged

By Pauline M Forte

October 23, 2008, 17:16
United Arab Emirates

Abu Dhabi: Christina Aguilera confided to reporters at Emirates Palace
here that her life wasn’t always full of happiness and success.

There were reasons, she said in a press conference on Thursday,
for everything that she’s done in the past.

"As a woman I think it’s important to be expressive of all facets of
myself including my sexuality, so it’s an empowering thing for me,"
said the Latina diva ahead of her Back to Basics concert on Friday
at Emirates Palace.

"As an artist I would never hold back expressing myself in ways I
see fit, especially now that I’ve become a mother. It’s important
to maintain the person that I was before I became a mother so I can
share with my son (Max) everything that I’m about and proud of."

She said she is glad that she was able to go through the experience so
that "I can teach my son not to be closed minded and give women the
respect that they deserve as far as being able to express themselves
and not feel that they have to live up to society’s certain standards".

For several years, she has been involved in charity work to help
children and bring awareness to domestic violence.

"Growing up in a household that had a lot of that going on, it is
something I’m very passionate about trying to get back and bring
awareness to," the 27-year-old pop star said.

Talking about her music, she said her new album will present all new
material. She’s also releasing a Greatest Hits record in November
with three bonus tracks which give a sneak peak of the new album,
"a 180 from the last record Back to Basics, going into the old and
paying tribute to the soul, jazz and blues music that inspired me
and that I love so very much," she said.

The new album is inspired from pop art, including Andy Warhol, and
the visual direction that comes with it.

"I never like to do the same things twice, period – either creatively
or personally. I continue to be inspired by new things that I can
in turn experiment and push forward with new and innovative ideas. I
find to not change is very stifling and I get bored easily.

"As much success as I ever feel fortunate enough to have received
in my life, working hard for it, there are still so many more things
that I have yet to do and goals to accomplish. Staying hungry is very
important for me," Aguilera said.

"I’m thrilled to be giving my first concert here tomorrow night. It’s
going to be a great show, for the whole family, for your friends. It’s
a feel-good show," she said.

Los Angeles musician Taleen Kalbian, 21, who will open the concert
for Aguilera, was present at the press conference.

Half-Armenian and half-Palestinian, Kalbian said she is a big fan of
Aguilera and opening for her is a dream come true.

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