In advance of his new LP On Earth, and In Heaven, Robin Thicke walked E! News through the songs and albums that have shaped him.
Robin Thicke is relieved.
After a lengthy hiatus from music, the “Blurred Lines” singer is poised to make his grand return with the release of his seventh studio album on Feb. 12. And he couldn’t be more excited about it.
“I’m glad I finally finished it,” he told E! News. “That’s the greatest reward right now, that it’s actually done. I’m very excited. It’s called On Earth, and In Heaven, and it’s the first album in about six or seven years. I’ve been through so much over these years with my father passing, my house burning down, divorce, my mentor passed away last year. And I’ve had three children during this time, fallen in love again. So there’s a lot to write about. I’m very excited to get this album out there.”
To set the stage for the new LP, the Masked Singer judge has already released a trio of tracks—”Forever,” “Beautiful” and “Take Me Higher”—with another on the way.
“‘Lucky Star’ is about that presence in our life, that when we’re all alone but we know we’re not alone,” he explained of the album’s fourth single, due Feb. 5. “There’s some presence that guides us, that fuels us, that lights the way for us, you know? That’s our lucky star. We all have something like that in our life.”
Ahead of the new material, E! News asked Robin to pull back the curtain on the artist and albums that have influenced him over the years. From the song that reminds him of childhood to the album he wishes he’d written himself, this is the soundtrack to his life.
The song/album that reminds me of childhood: I would say Billy Idol, “Rebel Yell” or “Dancing With Myself.” I just remember when I was six years old, I was Billy for Halloween. I had the spiky hair. I just remember some of my first memories of MTV and seeing Billy, and dressing like Billy for Halloween comes to mind.
The first album I remember buying with my own money: That’s a tough one. I remember Run-DMC as an early album that was very impactful because I had never heard anything like it. Rap music was just coming to the suburbs, you know? I remember listening to Run-DMC. Every song, memorizing every lyric. I had that album down.
The song/album people might not expect me to love: “Wrecking Ball” by Miley Cyrus. I love that song. Great song.
The song/album that makes me think of falling in love: Marvin Gaye‘s I Want You. I used to play that album when we’d have little soirees and people would come over and we’d be getting ready for dinner. I’d put all the candles in the big fireplace. It always felt like love was possible.
The song/album I turn to when I’m at my lowest: It depends on, do I want to wallow in it? Maybe I’ll go OK Computer [by Radiohead], you know what I mean? “No alarms and no surprises.” I might want to go there. But if I want to get up out of that, then Bob Marley. Nothing is more relaxing and puts you in the right headspace than putting on Bob Marley. That’ll always do it.
If I could only hear one song for the rest of my life, it would be: “Imagine.” I like that one. That’s a good one I could always hear.
The song/album that’s guaranteed to get me turned all the way up: Anything with Lil Jon! Just put Lil Jon on the record. Drake usually gets me going. Drake always just has that way of getting you hyped up in the club, having that new record, that new chorus, that new phrase you sing along with. Drake gets me hyped up.
The song/album I wish I wrote/recorded: Well, Thriller would’ve been nice. A great album, something that I would like to do an album like, would be the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack. My other soulful white boys, The Bee-Gees. They sang in falsetto, you know what I mean? They had the harmonies, the falsetto. They had the grooves, they had the love songs.
My own song that I’ll never get tired of performing: Probably “Lost Without You” because it was a very personal song, but it connected with so many people in different ways. I love singing it, and I love the feeling that it seems to give to the room. It seems to life up the room’s spirits every time.
My own song I’ll be happy to retire: That’s a tough one because they’re all kind of your babies, you know?
The song on my new project that I can’t wait for fans to sing along with me on tour: Probably “Lucky Star.” I think there’s something very universal about that song because we all go through tough times and we all need someone to love us, show us the way and guide us. Sometimes that person is right there next to you, and sometimes that person has moved on and is guiding you from afar, you know?
For more from Robin, be sure to check out the video above!
“Lucky Star” drops on Friday, Feb. 5, followed by the release of On Earth, and In Heaven on Feb. 12.