Monica Releases New Song ‘Letters’ / Covers ‘Essence’ & Talks Long-Awaited New Album ‘Trenches’

Published: Friday 30th Jun 2023 by Rashad

Cop a gander at Monica!

The veteran R&B diva, in full promotion mode in celebration of the June 24 premiere of her long-awaited Apple Music Radio show ‘Mo Talk,’ is expecting to hear even mo talk about the happenings of her career thanks to a stunning spread in ‘Essence‘ and the premiere of a brand spankin’ new single, ‘Letters.’

Details inside.


‘Letters,’ the latest drop from Monica’s serially delayed ninth studio album ‘Trenches‘ (originally due in 2019), arrived Friday (June 30) with minimal warning.

Featuring writing contributions from GRAMMY-winning friend Ciara, the heartbreak tune boasts themes of loving an incarcerated man – a motif also found aboard her 2004 Hot 100 top 20 hit ‘U Should’ve Known Better.’

“They can’t love you like I love you sounds so cliché / But when you say that to me, it just rings so truthfully / Had a couple substitutes, but they ain’t the real thing / Comparing everyone I get to the one can’t be replaced,” she croons on the cut produced by Tasha Catour.

The follow-up to the July 2022-released ‘Friends‘ (featuring Ty Dolla $ign),’ press PLAY above to hear the latest from the ‘Trenches’ LP.


Though the 42-year-old recently announced she’s put the finishing touches on TWO new albums – a Country effort and the R&B-leaning ‘Trenches’ – the latter was the main topic of discussion inside her session with the June 2023 digital edition of ‘Essence.’

“I think there’s been a little frustration toward me when it comes to releasing ‘Trenches,’ and I completely understand why and take full accountability,” she said before later admitting, “But I would rather the music be late and great than be right away and missing elements that I know should be there.”

And while Mo appears to be closer than ever to the project’s launch, she was careful not to unveil a tentative release date for it – sharing that she’s had to be honest in the past about how her own health issues and multiple family losses negatively impacted her creative process.

“The audience knows that I’m being honest with them,” she says of her relationship with her fans. “When I’ve made mistakes in my life, I created music about it. I didn’t hide it when I experienced different things. I talked about it, and I shared about it. That is what’s kept me connected to different generations of people throughout the years.”

Ahead of her headlining set at the 2023 EssenceFest, click here to see the full digital ‘Essence’ interview.

[photo courtesy: Gunner Stahl/Essence]

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  1. That Gorl June 30, 2023

    Monica is a staple in R&B. I love this new single & im happy we’re getting new material.

  2. Interac June 30, 2023

    As a fan, I’m glad she released something. However, this one may have to grow on me. I’ve heard the snippets over the years and I’m waiting for ‘bad’ or ‘feelings.’ I feel like the production didn’t need this 808.

  3. Sparkle June 30, 2023

    Another song dedicated to a n**** in jail cmon Mo🙄

  4. Paulo June 30, 2023

    Meh, none of her latest singles are doing anything for me. Committment was the best song she’s released in years. Not worth the 5 year wait for this album.

    • eric June 30, 2023

      “Commitment” is by far the best one.

  5. eric June 30, 2023

    I don’t want to hear the same excuses, because the weekly photoshoots on Facebook and Instagram didn’t stop, and neither did the creation process for her shows with VH1 and Apple. She has simply lost her passion for music or else she would pour herself into finishing and releasing it like everything else.

    • Truth July 2, 2023

      Ain’t nobody from her era releasing albums regularly.


      These projects come from their pockets, like Brandy’s last independent album or Kelly Rowland paying for her own music videos.

      Broke folks got comments on how folks spend real money.

  6. Mr RCW June 30, 2023

    Monica has been holding R&B down!!! I’m so excited for this season for her!!! I like the song and can’t wait until the album drops 🔥

  7. NH June 30, 2023

    Check out my oldskool Monica mixes

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