Geffen Records superstar and hit-making songwriter Mary J. Blige, is set to follow-up the most successful album of her career, the triple platinum “The Breakthrough,” with her eighth (8th) studio CD “Growing Pains” on Tuesday, December 18th, one week before Christmas.
“Growing Pains” includes her top ten single “Just Fine” which has become an instant favorite on radio enjoyed by over 20 million listeners. “Just Fine” is in heavy rotation on MTV, BET and VH-1, and Mary recently shot the video for her second single, “Work That,” which is currently featured in an Apple iPod commercial.
After selling over 40 million CDs and garnering six Grammy Awards during her phenomenal 15-year career, Mary is confident that her fans will not be disappointed with “Growing Pains.” “They’re going to get a sense of what my state of mind is and how I view the world,” she says. “And hopefully, most of all, they’re going to hear just the sincere honesty and love that I have for them.” She adds, “‘Growing Pains’ represents accepting that there’s pain that goes along with growing and change. No pain, no gain.”
“Growing Pains,” with Mary co-writing most of the songs on the album, features guest appearances by Ludacris and Usher and production by The Neptunes, Jazze Pha, Johnta Austin, Neyo, Stargate, Bryan-Michael Cox, Dre and Vidal, Tricky, Dream, and Sean Garrett.
Mary makes her message loud, clear and seriously funky on the first release “Just Fine” produced by Jazze Pha and Tricky and co-written by Mary and Dream. A celebration of life, “Just Fine” gives you Mary fierce, and as the video shows, glamorous. The song’s vibe? “Sometimes it feels like you’re having this miserable time, like all 365 days of the year are tough. But then, you get one of those days; maybe when your hair is great, or you’re not stuck in traffic; where it’s a ‘just fine’ day. At some point,” Mary laughs, “You’ve got have one or two of those.”
The party and positivity keeps on keeping on with the rump shaking second single “Work That.” Mary comments, “When I meet a woman who doesn’t know what to do about her weight or her hair I always say — ‘whatever it is that you have, make that work for you, Work what you got.'”
After releasing her bestselling anthology “Reflections” last year, “Growing Pains” is Mary’s first CD of new material since “The Breakthrough” debuted at #1 in 2005, selling over 700,000 copies its first week — the best opening week for a solo R&B female artist in SoundScan history. The album’s first single, “Be Without You,” also made chart history by holding down the #1 spot on the Billboard R&B charts for a record breaking 16 straight weeks; making it the longest-running No. 1 song on the R&B chart in over 40 years. Mary led all artists with eight 2007 Grammy nominations for the landmark album, and she took home honors for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance, Best R&B Song (both for “Be Without You”), and Best R&B Album. After earning three Grammy Awards, she continued her award show domination by winning nine Billboard Music Awards, two American Music Awards, two BET Awards, two NAACP Image Awards, and a Soul Train Award. “The Breakthrough” lived up to its name selling over seven million copies worldwide.