Alicia Keys: ‘KEYS’ is My Last Album…On A Major Label

Published: Wednesday 22nd Dec 2021 by Rashad

These days, the element of freedom for Alicia Keys looks like the absence of contractual obligation to a major record label.

Details inside:

Keys – hot on the promo trail for her latest album ‘KEYS’ – was joined by ‘Empire State of Mind’ co-star JAY-Z Tuesday (December 21) to discuss a number of music business hot topics including the state of the industry at large, the influence of streaming, and their respective legendary careers.

The discussion, hosted on Twitter Spaces (a platform reminiscent of Clubhouse), saw Alicia wax honest about her outlook on the future of how she’ll release music amid reports the ‘KEYS’ project isn’t garnering the commercial response afforded to its predecessors.

During the nearly 2 hour chat, the 40-year-old stunned when she casually announced she would likely be taking the independent route for her yet-to-be-released ninth studio album.

“‘KEYS’ is actually the last album that I have on a major label, so I’ve been with this same label for 20 joints – [even back to 2001’s] ‘Songs in A Minor’ – and ‘KEYS’ reflects the very last record,” she said. “I’m super proud and I’m super blessed, not only for the longevity but just for like I said the love and the passion that remains and maintains.”

JAY-Z – who also switched from releasing projects on major labels later in his career – praised the R&B diva for the transition.

“Congratulations…that’s an accomplishment in itself,” he started. “The fact that you were signed to a label for 20 years is an amazing thing in itself, but the fact that you were able to complete your contract, not many people have been afforded that.”


Click PLAY RECORDING below and skip to the 20:14 mark to hear her announcement:

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  1. K’man December 22, 2021

    Well the last 3 (here, Alicia and keys) albums flopped! I would expect RCA to terminate her contact!

    • J December 22, 2021

      It’s amicable in case you can’t read

  2. Shayla Queen™ 👑 December 22, 2021


  3. Tori December 22, 2021

    Whether she goes Independent or sing a new contract with the current label or a new, I don’t see anything changing from her last three albums. Like I’ve stated before, reinvent herself or move on. Use that drive to help other artist who can add a fresh idea.

    • Aj December 22, 2021

      But if she can sell 20-30k albums as an independent based on her name alone, she’ll take home more dollar. Indie artists don’t need to sell as many copies to make a project a financial success.

      Although I’m not a fan of her own productions, she is able to produce her own music. Swizz also produces music and I doubt her charges her the full amounts etc. In terms of value for money, I totally get why as a legacy artist it makes sense.

      • Chilepleaseee December 22, 2021

        Umm she has enough money so it’s not about that. At this point it’s about her legacy and these last few albums are doing anything but helping it. What she needs is a decent producer to come in and take over.

  4. ajm265 December 22, 2021

    She’s past her prime all of the girls from the 90s and 2000s are. It is what it is. They are our patti Labelle’s, Tina turners, Aretha’s just a younger in age as compared to where those ladies were during this time of their careers. Once an artist, minus Taylor swifts, gets to album 6 or 7 the fans have moved on, life has changed for many of them. People have had kids and their priorities isn’t buying music. Some may go to concerts for nostalgia . You throw steaming in the mix and you get what we have in the industry now.

  5. Uggh December 22, 2021

    So she is been dropped by RCA? Normani is next… Hell yea

    • Unmovable December 22, 2021

      Alicia fulfilled her contract with 8 albums. She’s not being dropped she’s just moving on.

    • J December 22, 2021

      All you had to do was read

  6. Farrah’s Luggage (8k Camila) December 22, 2021


  7. JB December 22, 2021

    Alicia u got it still..but it’s been on the shelf
    For a minute..Reinvent yes! but do it the AK way…..
    Your not selling like Adele neither Taylor Swift
    & DRAKE and you should be…but reality is your NOT…
    go independent a joke!!! U will still need the
    CONTROL 78% OF MARKETSHARE!!!!/ WORLDWIDE…NO independent can compete
    In the 12% of what’s left over no matter what your name is too crowded… The Costs of independence is astronomical and then there
    Streaming more like ( SCREAMING) owned by who TECH CO’S so MAJORS have to get in bed
    With them..or they would not have survived
    I recommend u get a
    Joint venture deal with an option to buy back ur masters at cost if allowed….BUT but but..
    jay-z can tell u all about it
    He had to raise BANK to buy back MASTERS TO
    REASONABLE DOUBT…and it cost…..
    his corporate portfolio….TO ACHIEVE BANK
    Alicia! U can do it tomorrow. ASK Swiss
    Then Jay let’s go gurl let’s go…I’m your biggest
    Cheerleader I Adore your GIFTS and that
    Other one MARY J. BEAUTIFUL I mean BLIGE.

    • J December 22, 2021

      This comment is full of grammatical errors and it’s very hard to read but I am assuming she’s still going to have a major distribution and streaming deal at the very least. She doesn’t need them for anything else.

  8. J December 22, 2021

    Congrats A Keys! I’ll always give her music a try. Hope her next project sounds better.

  9. Chanel December 23, 2021

    I’ve downloaded “Keys” and haven’t heard the full album due to me listening to Christmas music daily til new year but I will asap. But I’ve been a huge fan of Alicia since 2001 and if it wasn’t for her I don’t think that I wouldn’t ever touch another piano again. But if she feels like going the independent route then she has my support.

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