Brittany Howard On The Songwriting Renaissance Of Her 'What Now' Solo Album

One of music's biggest voices is back with her second solo album and a coming tour this spring to back it up.

On What Now, Brittany Howard continues to stretch her wings as a songwriter and producer beyond the rootsy comforts of the Alabama Shakes.

Speaking with Q104.3's Out of the Box with Jonathan Clarke, Brittany addressed the impressive sonic breadth of her new record.

"It happens organically," she says. "Usually when I sit down to write a song, I'm experiencing some kind of feeling. To me, a feeling could be [envisioning] a very small music video or a short film, and I just need a soundtrack to it. That soundtrack is always going to be different. I can't really say that I'm always feeling like a soul revival song. Sometimes it feels like avant-garde jazz, sometimes it feels like pop, sometimes it feels like psychedelic soul and so I just use all of those things as like tools in my toolbox."

A perfect example is Brittany's new single "Prove It to You." She notes how her vocal intentionally plays in contrast to the musical arrangement.

"I like to play with juxtaposition when I'm creating songs, and the juxtaposition of this one in particular is that the voice is so small and vulnerable and pleading and unsure, but kind of darkly hopeful," she explains. "'Cause I imagine going through so many relationships and it just hasn't quite panned out. Here you go again, and so like that's kind of the effort in the song. But then it's accompanied by dance music, so it helps you swallow it, you know what I mean?"

Check out the full conversation via the player above!

Go here for more on What Now and all of Brittany Howard's tour dates.

Check out the lyric video for "Prove It To You":

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