Timothy Carson: What is the meaning behind the title of the album? Is it self-reflective?
Chico DeBarge: It definitely is. The CD consists of situations that I've dealt with in one form or another. It's an album that tells an honest story. The title Addiction isn't just about abusing substances like drugs, it's an album that tells of my affliction. Something that a brother, a mother, or friend has gone through at one point.
TC: What is the main theme of the album?
CD: I'm not sure if you have listened to the album, but when listeners play the CD, they'll see it's mostly a love story, although not every song on the album is about love. The song "Slick (Addiction)" is an example of this.
TC: I actually did get the opportunity to listen to album in its entirety, and I must admit that you give a pretty solid offering. It's actually, in my opinion, a very strong CD.
CD : Well thank you, I appreciate that.
TC: I noticed that you wrote, or co-wrote most of the songs for the album, how many songs did you originally record?
CD : This was one of those albums that sort of shaped itself. I just recorded and recorded. There were even a few songs that were recorded for prior albums, but just might not have been right at that time.
TC: I know this can be a difficult question, but can you tell me what is your favorite song on the album and why?
CD: (With some hesitation) I think it'll have to be "I'm Okay." For those who don't know, there were some things that happened in my life and certain situations I had to go through. This song is a chance for me to say what I wasn't able to say back then to my mother, my friends, my family and fans. After coming out of those situations, I feel like I can now say, "I'm Okay."
TC: That's definitely one of several songs on the album that I took a liking to.
CD: Wow really? Tell me the others?
TC: I'd have to say "Tell Your Man" the song that features your labelmate, Joe Thomas. In my opinion, the two of your voices compliment each really well on the track. Next, I'd have to say "Do My Bad Alone." The lyrics as a whole just made me actually do some self-reflecting about certain relationships and friendships that I have. And finally, it'd have to the last interlude on the album where you are reciting some spoken word. I'm a poet and a big fan of poetry, and the words you were speaking, came from the heart and I could feel the raw emotion. You really opened yourself to those who didn't know who Chico is, or what you had to go through. I personally had a better understanding by the end of that brief interlude.
CB : Yeah that interlude was me in a nutshell.
TC: Now, one of your biggest fans here in Atlanta who goes by the name of Marquitta Gillespie-Green, wanted to know if you'd be doing any touring to promote the album?
CD: Well I did come through ATL a few weeks back and did a set with Joe, but I'll definitely be doing some more touring in the future. The next time I hit the stage I'll be doing a full set, but everyone can follow me on Twitter to stay updated with the latest.
TC: I'll make sure to relay that message.
TC: Out of all your albums, where does this one stand? For example, is it the best of your CDs, is it one showing the most growth, or does it just represent you in entirety?
CD: I think this one represents me getting my legs. Yeah, I now got my legs. I'm more in tune with my own and I know what I want to say. I know who I am. I know where I been. From all the misery and hardship I've come through I'm now able to stand above it. This is me as a man. I wanted to do like Sade, and take my time and put out a quality album that represents me.
TC: With most record labels being financially driven, how hard is it for you to remain true to your craft and not do what is commercially appealing?
CD: It's definitely a struggle, but being under Kedar (Kedar Massenburg, founder and head of the Kedar Entertainment label) I definitely feel that I can be true. My work doesn't have to be rushed. There are times when we don't always see eye-to-eye but we are able to sit down, discuss it, put our positions on the table and work through it. We respect one another.
TC: What do you hope to accomplish with this album?
CD: I think tell a story. Entertain. All of that. I hope to encourage and motivate. If a song don't make love to me, then it doesn't make sense to me.
TC: If you could change anything about the album, even something small, what would it be?
CD: [Hesitating] I think ... uh, taken better pictures. I feel that the whole album in regards to the music is of good quality so I wouldn't change anything about it.
TC: With piracy at an all time high and the declining in record sales, why do you feel that consumers should go out and purchase your album?
CD: I think they should purchase the album because the whole album tells a story. Majority of people will purchase a CD to only find that the only good song on it is just one hit single. This CD tells a life story, it's a soundtrack to my life. It's me expressing different emotions and going through different situations.
TC: Who would you like to collaborate with in the future?
CD: Alicia Keys.
TC: That'd definitely make a interesting collaboration.
TC: What is your all time favorite song that you've recorded?
CD: "Love Still Good" [from his 1997 album Long Time No See].
TC: What song by another artist would you like to re-record?
CD: Stevie Wonder. Yeah, "As" by Stevie Wonder.
TC: You have five kids correct? Are there any blossoming singers?
CD: Yeah, they're showing interest already. They all are singing, acting, dancing and playing. They are real passionate children.