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Stansfield Faces Up to things...
Stansfield doesn't mince her words when she explains
why she quit the music business for five years. "It
would have killed me if I didn't, I had to get away,"
says the Dublin based pop superstar without hesitation.
, 35, was at the top of the music world, selling out
the biggest arenas and making millions from album
sales when she decided enough was enough. She was
also one of the top sex symbols of the nineties, adorning
magazine covers across the world.
showbiz parties and fame were great while they lasted,
but she knew that there were other things in life
that were more important. "I just wanted to live life
without having to be in the spotlight all the time.
I have never been the kind of person who seeks publicity
or gets off on fame so I just did something else for
a while. I realised that there was life outside the
music business. I had been working really hard for
the best part of a decade. I have always loved music
and would never turn my back on it, but you have to
remind yourself that there's something else out there."
Stansfield is set to make a huge impact on the pop
world once again with a new album, Face Up.
She's spent a year recording it, determined to show
that time has done nothing to diminish her talent.
"I know the music business has changed over the years
but I think, at the end of the day, good songs and
a good voice are the most important things. I've been
doing concerts without even having an album out so
there is a fan base still there. There are a lot of
new acts but I'm still writing contemporary songs
which have a place in the modern day pop charts."
years ago the star moved to Dublin after falling in
love with the city while she was recording an album.
She never looked back and says she will always regard
Ireland as her true home. "I just love Dublin and
to be honest I think I'll live there until the day
I die," she said.
"The reason I moved there in the first place is simply
because it is the greatest city in the world. There's
such an amazing atmosphere and I really feel I can
be myself there. I don't get harassed by the press
and I can just go shopping down Grafton Street and
no-one even comes near me. People in Ireland don't
get obsessed with stars and they can take them or
leave them to be honest. It's totally different to
London where there's cameras in your face everywhere
you go. There are some people who go out just to attract
attention but I'm much happier just doing my own thing.
I also find Ireland a very inspirational place to
live because it stimulates your imagination. It has
a big influence on what I write and I'd like to think
fans will hear that through this album and past ones
could have easily walked away from the music world
with a fortune and lifestyle most would only ever
dream of. "There are those who will say 'why don't
you just take the money and run?' But when you have
music in your blood you could never walk away from
it. I've managed to get a lovely house and great lifestyle
from what I have done in my career - but the biggest
satisfaction comes from success, not from money. I
don't need to make any more money so that is not the
passion that drives me. Getting a number one single
would be great but that isn't even enough motivation
to want to keep going. It really comes from within
- it's the same thing that got me involved in music
in the first place, the love of writing and performing
songs. That's why fame and fortune and everything
that comes with the showbiz world are never enough
to keep you in it."
her break from the grueling commitments of life as
a pop star, Stansfield says she is feeling re-charged
and ready to prove she still has what it takes. "Some
people are going to regard this as a comeback but
I don't see it like that at all. I've still been keeping
my eye on the music business and I've even done other
things like acting. For the next year I'm going to
concentrate on the music again and make sure as many
people hear this album as possible. I feel it is my
strongest work and I'm confident that there are a
few hits waiting to happen. Ideally, if the album
sales go well enough, I'll also be doing a major tour
at the end of the year - that's what I'm aiming for."