Sep 16, 2014

Ariana Grande talks Big Sean, writing songs that were 'too sexual, too mature' at age 14

The singer opened up in the October issue of Marie Claire about how she once pretended to be like her character in the series 'Sam & Cat,' and how her goal is to do anything but that now.


Ariana Grande may have gotten her big break on Nickelodeon, but she's proven to be wise beyond her years.

"I was 14 years old and ready to make an R&B album," the now-21-year-old singer said in the October Marie Claire cover story.

"I was like, 'Where is that Mary J. Blige collab? Where is that Natasha Bedingfield writing session? Where is my session with India.Arie?'" she recalled. "I'm ready. Let's go."

But the young Grande's mother wasn't so ready and after hearing one of her daughter's songs.

"I wrote this song called 'Higher,' and the lyrics were too sexual, too mature," Grande told the mag on newsstands Sept. 23. "My mom was like, 'This is a great song, but damn, you're too young for this.'"

While Grande doesn't dish about her relationship with rumored boyfriend Big Sean, she does reveal the rapper's involvement in her first fender bender.

"I was driving to Big Sean's house on those windy hills in L.A," she told the magazine. "It was my first time going up those hills so I was going like 12 miles per hour. This lady was whipping around the corner, and I came to a complete stop so she bumped me really hard — the whole front of my Range Rover was wrecked.

"She jumped out and was like, 'Sweetie, it's okay, it's totally fine. What do you do?' I was like, 'I'm a singer.' And she was like, 'Oh, I think I broke my leg.' And I was like, 'I mean, I make jewelry.'"

Grande said her on-screen persona as Cat Valentine, first on Nick’s “Victorious” and later on the spin-off and now-canceled “Sam & Cat,” showed her in a more youthful light — one she thought was best to emulate in front of fans and in interviews.


"People liked her and they accepted her and they thought that I was like her," she said of her goofy character. "So I used to pretend to be a little more like her than I actually was."

Behind the façade, Grande was more than ready to embark on an internationally renowned musical career, showing off her maturity in its prime.

Unfortunately, her first single, "Put Your Hearts Up," did just the opposite, sounding more like her comedic character sang it than Grande herself.

"I was like, 'Guys, there has to be a really distinct difference between me and my character,'" she recalled telling her label.

Fast-forward to her follow up, "The Way," and she was on the path to separating her true self from the character that she played in the hit tween series.

"We did that with 'The Way.' I dyed my hair back to brown," she said of her redefinition.

"I made out with a rapper in the video," she continued. "I made the point I wanted to make. And I was excited to do so after so many years of pretending to be somebody else in front of a lot of people."

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