Eve is rounding up some big production guns for Here I Am, her upcoming fourth album for both Dr. Dre's Aftermath/Interscope imprint and Swizz Beatz' Full Surface label.
Calling them "the hip-hop all-star team," Eve has enlisted Pharrell Williams, Timbaland, Cool & Dre and up-and-coming producer Neo (not to be confused with singer/songwriter Ne-Yo). The Swizz Beatz-produced track "Tambourine" may end up being the first official single following her unofficial summer release "Cashflow" featuring T.I.
"It feels like a first album," Eve says of the new set. "I haven't been out in four years and I felt like I had to roll the dice. Why put out an album that sounds like [all the others]? I had to get out of the box -- for myself."
Eve went completely out of the box for one of the tracks, called "All Night Long."
"[Pharrell] made me sing a whole song. I finally got up the nerve [but] I feel like I was bullied into it," she jokes. "But it's one of my favorite songs on the album. I was really stressed about it but it was fun to do. I consider myself somebody who can maybe hold a note on a good day. I sang hooks before, which is super easy, but I had to get out of my comfort zones."
The singer has much more time to focus on her music now that her UPN series is no longer in the picture. Eve admits that balancing her two careers was difficult.
"I was really excited about it but I needed to get away from it to do music 'cause there's no way you can do both," she says. "I'm sad on one hand 'cause I really fell in love with the cast but this is something that I really want to do. I missed music."