Around the time of their split, Aiko released the single “Triggered (Freestyle),” where she unpacked her grievances, sadness, and anger with an ex. Many thought she was talking about Sean, and in a new interview with Essence, the singer revealed that while the breakup influenced the song, it wasn’t only about Sean.
She also shared Sean's initial reactions to the song. “He was just like, ‘Wow, I’m not your friend.’ I was like, ‘Well, I was feeling that in the moment. This is just a song. This is not 100 percent about you,'” Aiko said.
“Those are the things that I may feel, and I know that they are irrational and coming from just an angry emotional place, but that’s what’s so beautiful about art is that you can just throw paint on a blank canvas, and do something crazy and that’s your release," she added. "You didn’t hurt anyone, you know? I feel like, especially because we have a personal relationship, and a true friendship, that’s why I could play it for him, and be like, ‘Yeah, sorry. I kind of went really hard, but don’t think that this is a personal letter to you.'”
Aiko also touched on setting boundaries on social media, particularly to keep some elements of her life, her own. “The internet has made everyone aware of their opinion,” she said. “As many people as there are in the world, that’s how many opinions there are. If you let that many opinions affect your own opinion, and your own way of looking at things, you’re going to be so confused.”
She continued, “Whether it be something with me and Sean, or me and my daughter,” she said, referring to her 11-year-old Namiko. “I just love the feeling of taking that away from people; their need to have to say something or have to give their opinion because I personally have never been that way—well maybe when I was younger, or high or drunk.”
Aiko's third studio album, Chilombo, arrives on March 6. The tracklist can be found below; guests include Nas, Miguel, Future, and John Legend, among others.
Two months after the album's release, Aiko will kick off The Magic Hour tour with special guests Queen Naija and Ann Marie. The North American trek will begin May 1 in Boston, followed by stops in Los Angeles, Miami, Houston, Chicago, and Toronto.
Tickets will go on sale to the public March 6; each ticket purchase will come with a digital copy of Chilombo. Fans can also cop presale tickets this Friday via Spotify at JheneAiko.com.