Maroon 5 frontman Adam Levine is singing the praises of hip-hop and its influence on him in a new interview with Variety.
“Something unique to this band is that we have always looked to hip-hop, R&B, all rhythmic forms of music, from back when we were writing our first album to now. Rock music is nowhere, really,” Levine, 39, says. “I don’t know where it is. If it’s around, no one’s invited me to the party.”
The singer continues to herald the world of hip-hop, adding, “All of the innovation and the incredible things happening in music are in hip-hop. It’s better than everything else. Hip-hop is weird and avant-garde and flawed and real, and that’s why people love it.”
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For Levine, that means looking to the world of hip-hop and R&B for musical inspiration when it comes to Maroon 5’s own music, hoping to find some longevity.
“My goal is to make songs that don’t sound dated 10 years later,” he says. “My main criteria for a song is, can I live with it forever? And if I can’t, I just don’t have the heart to do it. It’s that simple.”
But even someone who has spent 16 years as the frontman of a band with several chart-topping tracks under his belt, doesn’t always know when he has a surefire hit on his hands.
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“I never know,” he says. “If you were to break it down scientifically, when I’ve had that feeling, more times than not, I’ve been right. So yes, I have a good track record. But I’ve also felt very passionately about some songs that didn’t go anywhere.” Levine cites 2007’s “Won’t Go Home Without You” as an example of a song that didn’t exactly play out with fans and radio as he had expected.
“It was one of our worst-performing songs,” he adds. “You just don’t know – it’s the temperature of the culture and what we’re currently dealing with outside of music too.”