Grown Folks Music chatted with songstress Maysa Leak about Love Is A Battlefield— her new album of covers, including a surprise cover of a Justin Bieber song. She talks about how she arrived at selecting a few of the songs for the album including Beiber’s and why “Love Is A Battlefield” is not only a song, but a purpose. Read below and enjoy.

GFM: You have a new album– Love Is Battlefield— an album of covers and I’d like to name a few of the songs that you do on the album and ask you how you decided that you wanted to sing that particular song.

ML: I chose “Love is a Battlefield” because I loved the song growing up. That’s just one of the biggest hits we had back in the day. I chose the song also because I thought it would unexpected of me to record. People wouldn’t expect that at all and I didn’t want this album to be a bunch of songs people thought I’d probably do, you know? That’s why I also chose Justin Bieber’s “As Long As You Love Me”… for that same reason.

GFM: I was going to ask you about that. When I saw “As Long As You Love Me”, I actually was thinking about the Backstreet Boys and then I found out it was Justin Bieber’s. Either way it’s a surprise. How did you come to sing that song?

ML: Just because I love the song. I listen to a lot of music. I have my son and his cousins and they listen to everything… pop, hip hop… everything. But, because my niece is so in love with Justin Bieber, I’d actually heard that song a lot. It just resonated with me. Just the thought of loving somebody so strong that they’ve got your back no matter what– that’s something that we all want. I’ve become a fan of Justin Beiber since that time. I went to see him in concert with my niece and that song just stuck with me. Out of all of his music that song is the one that stuck with me. I just love the lyrics. As a woman… a grown woman… I just like what it says so that’s why I decided to do that song.

GFM: The song that surprised me the most was not Justin Beiber, but that you reached back and got that Nona Gaye record [“The Things That We All Do For Love”]. How did you decide on that one?

ML: [Laughs] Yeah! I been a fan of that song for a long time. I’ve kept saying I was going to do it. For years I said I was going to remake that. When I was writing down my list for the songs I wanted to do for this album I remembered that’s one of the main ones that I wanted to do. Nona did such a great job with that song. It’s so sweet and it’s romantic. I just thought it was great. I just love the melody and everything. It’s fun to sing.

GFM: I’d like to kind of flip it around. Is there any song of yours that you wouldn’t mind someone covering and who would you want to sing it?

ML: [Laughs] All of them. I want anybody. Please. Anybody just cover all my stuff. Especially the songs that I’ve written. That’s the way to get paid, so I would love if they cover my songs. That’s a good way to get paid.

GFM: You explained earlier why you chose to sing “Love Is A Battlefield”, but [it’s our understanding that] you also chose it because love is political battle cry for you right now. Can you explain what you mean by that?

ML: I was going into this whole thing about mankind in general and how love is like fighting. Like it always has [been]. There was a time when people were more polite or they had more compassion for each other. They thought about what they said first before they said it to spare somebody’s feels or they]were concerned about somebody else’s feelings. To me, [in] the climate that we’re living in… the political climate that we’re living in… we’re seeing more and more that people, the negative ones, seem to be emboldened. They have more energy. They have more likes. They seem [to be] supported to spew hatred. One of things Bluey [Maunick], the leader and founder of Incognito said on stage one night one is, ‘There are more good people on this Earth than there are bad.’ When I was making this record what I was thinking about on the spiritual tip is that is true, there are more good people than bad people. But, why does it seem like the bad people are in the spotlight? Why do they seem to be winning? Why are the influencing people to bring out more of that negative side? To me, love is on the battlefield to take over. I think there’s a lot of us that would rather have a more loving society to live in than the one we’re living in now.

GFM: What’s your definition of Grown Folks Music?

ML: Grown folks music is music that is sexy… that is strong… and helps you through life. It’s a soundtrack to your life. But, it doesn’t have to be blatant. Grown folks music is not blatant or overtly sexual. It’s seductive and it’s sexy to me.

Maysa Leak’s new album is out TODAY.

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