Beyoncé Knowles and Christina Aguilera shared the honor of covering July's music edition of W. Both singers are at exciting points in their careers — Christina has found a new outlet on TV with NBC's The Voice while Beyoncé is gearing up for the release of her new album 4. Beyoncé spoke to the magazine about her vision and inspiration for the tracks, even revealing the important meaning of the record's title. Beyoncé said in W:
- On her vision: "When I sing a song, I definitely have the image for the video in my mind. I kind of hear the choreography that will be in the video, and I can see how I’ll look, even before anyone — the record company, the director — has heard the song."
- On her new record: "I wanted this record to come from a raw place. Playing Etta James in the movie Cadillac Records really changed me. It was a darker character, and I realized that if anything is too comfortable, I want to run from it. It’s no fun being safe."
- On the symbolism of her album's title: "The fans have named the album 4. And four is my favorite number. It’s an important number in my life: the date of my birthday, my mom’s birthday, my husband’s birthday, the day I got married. Barack Obama is the 44th president, and I performed ‘At Last’ by Etta James at his inauguration."
Photos courtesy Patrick Demarchelier for W