This weekend, “Refill” singer Elle Varner made her way to Brooklyn to sing the national anthem for the EBC Celebrity Challenge and also found time to chop it up with The Stashed, where she waxed poetic about her forthcoming sophomore album, “Four Letter Word,” and how previous “Only Wanna Give It To You” collaborator and friend J. Cole inspired her to show her more acoustic side on the album.
“The album is just…I’m so proud of it. I think it’s phenomenal,” said Varner. She continued, “So many people helped me make it what it is. It’s very raw, and it doesn’t necessarily fit into one genre or one category, and that’s kind of what inspired the title “Four Letter Word.” It’s ambiguous, its about what you take from it.”
The new album promises to deliver the same R&B feel as her first, but she also made a point to include more eclectic sounds, a move partially inspired by good friend J. Cole who was wowed by the beauty upon hearing her play acoustic guitar.
“I was just working with someone who confronted me on it. It was J. Cole actually. He heard some of my acoustic stuff and he was like ‘yo, what are you doing?’ And I was saying ‘I have to do this, so I can do this, and then do this’ and [Cole] was like “No, you don’t! You have everything you need!’ He was like, ‘why am I here?'”
She went on to explain how Cole’s suggestion led her to change the direction of her album.
“He gave me that push and that one-on-one real talk and that scared everybody. Everybody was like ‘oh my God, oh my God, what is she talking about?’ I came in [to the studio] the next day like ‘Okay, everything I’ve done. Trash it! I’m ready to start over!’ [laughs]. It was a shift where It took someone else to kind of give me that push to trust in my own talent and my own sh*t, basically.”
Check out flicks of the beautiful Varner above. Would you like another collab between Elle & J. Cole? Sound off below.