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Normani Shares How Her Parents' Cancer Battles Influenced 'Dopamine'

  /  06.06.2024

Having dropped her Gunna-assisted single “1:59” in April, Normani’s return to music has been warmly received by fans and critics. After several years of anticipation, the artist is preparing to unveil her first studio album, Dopamine, on June 14.

On Thursday (June 6), Dazed published a cover story with Normani, in which she discussed how various personal challenges fueled the LP’s creative process. During the pandemic, her mother’s breast cancer resurfaced after 19 years in remission, and a year later, her father was diagnosed with cancer.

“It was hard feeling misunderstood because of the lack of knowledge people had for my circumstances in real-time,” the songstress shared. She also admitted to struggling with the pressure to release music at the time, calling fans’ expectations “frustrating and totally trivial.”


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Despite the hardships, Normani pushed through, driven by a desire to give her parents strength. “If I was able to endure this very traumatic experience not only once but three times with my family, then what is putting a song out? What is putting this body of work out?” she questioned.

With Dopamine specifically, the “Motivation” creator drew inspiration from iconic artists like Rihanna, Madonna, and Janet Jackson to craft an album that captures a spectrum of emotions, including the highs and lows. “And it’s a little toxic, too,” she added.

“I feel like it embodies everything I wanted to say — it feels dominant, strong, assertive — but on the flip side, there are so many layers to what dopamine is,” Normani elaborated.

In May, she celebrated her 28th birthday with the release of “Candy Paint.” The record was first previewed in a Bose headphones commercial in 2023 and teased once again during a trailer for Dopamine. The project’s tracklist is expected to be revealed closer to its launch date.


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