Indy: Your new self-titled CD is quite a departure from your first album, Free Yourself. Instead of being mainly ballads, it has some slamming up-tempo tracks and even some live instrumentation which is becoming a rarity in R&B.
FB: I wasn't able to really do what I wanted to do on the first album, but I had great songs on the first album. [At first], everybody was looking at me like I was crazy [to want live instruments]: "You know what year it is? Ain't nobody doing that now. They're using Pro Tools. They're using this. They're using that." And that's the difference. Music ain't like it used to be.
Indy: Your life story is well-known, how you've been a single mother since age 17 and the struggles you've had with that life. But Fantasia is a pretty upbeat album. Why does it have that personality?
FB: I'm not going through that drama anymore. I'm not down anymore. My songs are up-tempo, and I'm in good spirits. I'm 22 years old and I'm ready to have a good time, and I wanted people to see that through my music. No more sad stuff.
Indy: How important is it for you to get beyond being known for winning "American Idol" and get known for your own albums?
FB: It's very, very important, because you won't get the respect and the support that you need. You have to get out there and you have to fight and prove yourself and show yourself that you know what? at the end of the day, I'm a real artist. And [former Idols] Kelly [Clarkson] did that, Ruben [Studdard] did that, and on this one, I did that, too.
Fantasia is in stores now.