â€˜Iâ€™m Just A Girlâ€™ singer puts family first but struggles to find words to tell her tale
By Darrah Le Montre, staff writer
Los Angeles, CA (RPRN) 6/11/09 â€” â€œItâ€™s one thing when you have an infant, but when you have this two-or three-year-old going, â€˜Mommy, whatâ€™s the deal?â€™ Itâ€™s harder. Kingstonâ€™s whole thing is, â€˜I need, I need.â€™ He is insane right now,â€ singer Gwen Stefani says.
The lead vocalist for the ska-pop band No Doubt, the platinum blonde fashion plate has two kids with Bush rocker, Brit Gavin Rossdale and lives in Los Angeles.
In regard to nine-month-old Zuma, 39-year-old Stefani tells ELLE Magazine this month, â€œWeâ€™re just hoping for the best and that heâ€™s not going to turn out to be a freak, but weâ€™ll see.â€
Also a successful soloist, the Anaheim-native gained recognition as the daring but accessible feminist who fronted â€˜those guysâ€™ in two-time Grammy-winning band No Doubt. In fact, one of their first hit songs, â€œDonâ€™t Speakâ€ off the epic album â€œTragic Kingdomâ€ in 1995 was guided by a dramatic narrative that captured the conflicting emotions of the band. Their third studio album, â€œTragic Kingdomâ€ detailed Stefaniâ€™s sorrowful breakup with bassist and childhood crush Tony Kanal and the hit-makersâ€™ near disintegration early in their career. The video for â€œDonâ€™t Speakâ€ was the publicâ€™s first introduction to the internal drama that haunted them, but somehow never overcame the clan. She told The Observer in 2005, â€œAll I ever did was look at Tony and pray that God would let me have a baby with him.â€
Now happily married, Stefani says sheâ€™s no longer willing to put the group â€“ who has won a slew of MTV Video Music Awards â€” first now that sheâ€™s a wife and mother. She tells Elle Magazine that the band is touring without a new album to promote because she was struck with a debilitating case of writerâ€™s block.
â€œI might never be able to write another song,â€ she emotes. â€œWho knows? I did try. So here we are, going on a tour without a new record.
The first of those two aforementioned solo albums, â€œLove. Angel. Music. Baby.â€ arrived in 2004, when the self-proclaimed geek was working off the momentum of No Doubtâ€™s booming follow-ups to â€œTragic Kingdom.â€ The autobiographical â€œReturn of Saturn,â€ which documented her early thirties, and â€œRock Steady,â€ which returned the group to its dancier roots.
â€œLove. Angel. Music. Babyâ€ and its accompanying clothing line with the acronym L.A.M.B. were huge commercial victories for the singer and named after her favorite things. (Aside from gold bling with a single moniker on them.)
It is reported that the clothing line, which now includes watches, grossed $90M in 2007. She expanded her collection with the 2005 Harajuku Lovers line, drawing inspiration from Japanese culture and fashion often making public appearances with her H-Girls in tow.
The currently overwhelmed trendsetter made her acting debut playing Jean Harlow in Martin Scorseseâ€™s The Aviator in 2004 and was nominated for the Screen Actors Guild Awards for Outstanding Performance by Cast in Motion Picture.
â€œWhat Iâ€™ve gone through is major, right?â€ Gwen announces. â€œI got married and had two human beings come out of my body â€” plus two solo albums and two clothing lines that were born during the same period.
â€œIâ€™m still nursing! Iâ€™m a little sucked dry. Like maybe once I sleep through the night, maybe Iâ€™ll be able to write a song. Thatâ€™s where Iâ€™m at.â€
We can only hope sheâ€™ll be back in unequivocal shape soon, having grown stronger from her trials and remaining faithful to the group that made her a ubiquitous name and post-riot grrl icon, despite being the bane of healthy hair everywhere.