The Heart Attack singer and former Disney star talks about fame, being the subject of an intervention and – possibly – having a crush on Barney the Dinosaur
Good evening Demi. Your new album is far better than your last. Did you realise this while you were recording it?
Well, thank you. When I finished the last album I thought it was great for a while, but I got sick of the songs a lot faster than with my others so I figured maybe it wasn’t my best. When I went to record this one, I knew I had to have songs that excited me. As well as just better songs. If I want to be a pop artist, I have to make catchy songs (1).
You recently said fame adds 10 years. Now you’re 20, so what’s it like being 30?
Well I feel 40, never mind 30! It feels pretty good though.
Do you like getting older?
I feel like getting older is a privilege, and I’m thankful to have every single day. If I were to be able to live until I’m actually 30 that would be a huge blessing in itself.
How does it feel to be the subject of an intervention? (2)
That wasn’t the only time it had ever happened, I was just really good at manipulating the people around me, telling them I was fine. And then I’d get help in a different way. The first few ones were a little surprising, but the final one was … expected. And I had no other choice.
Was it a relief?
Yeah. There’s a secret relief where you just feel like: “OK, time for somebody else to be taking the reins of my life for me.”
If you have a daughter, and if when she’s 15 she says “I want to be famous”, what will you say?
When people say “I want to be famous – I want to be a star”, you have to ask: “What are your intentions? If you just want to be famous, make a sex tape.” So what I’d say is, if you’re doing it because you want to be a respected actress or musician, follow your dream. If you just want paparazzi following you, rethink what’s going on in your little head. It’s crazy how people confuse the two nowadays.
Do you feel a bit jealous that Daft Punk could send out other people to do all their public appearances?
I’m completely jealous of that – mainly because they could go to a restaurant on a date without people coming up to them and making them feel weird.
That’s assuming they don’t wear their helmets on dates
That is assuming that, yes.
If you were in a restaurant and your date wore a robot helmet, what would you do?
I would probably leave.
He’s a very private celebrity, but do you have any good gossip about Barney? (3)
Well. Barney the Dinosaur is a dinosaur that is real. I don’t know if you’re trying to get any gossip about that. But if Barney was fake – and I’m not confirming or denying that, and I’m not suggesting that I may have had to sign a confidentiality agreement saying I’d never say he wasn’t real – I would imagine him to be very attractive. Because he’d have to be a muscular guy to carry that suit. And he’d happen to also have a really good-looking face. And he may or may not have been my crush when I was growing up working on that show. That’s if Barney was fake.
So this hypothetical Barney was really hot?
I’m just saying that if Barney wasn’t real that might have been the scenario, but I’m not confirming or denying that.
Who’s easier to work with out of Barney and your fellow US X Factor judge Simon Cowell?
Can you confirm or deny that Simon Cowell is real?
I think he is – I haven’t seen a really good-looking muscular guy inside … [slightly hysterical nervous titter] his, um, suit.
I might start a Kickstarter to fund a new Camp Rock film (4) . How much will you pledge?
Honestly, I probably wouldn’t put in any money. In fact I definitely wouldn’t. As much as I love Disney Channel and what they’ve done for me, it’s a chapter that’s closed. And I’m very glad that it is.
One old Disney bigwig said you had a voice like you’d “swallowed Pat Benatar”. Which current pop artist would you most like to eat?
Someone said that? [Laughs] Well, I grew up listening to them so if I could swallow Kelly Clarkson and Christina Aguilera that would be great.
You’ve put the two best songs from your last album on the end of your new album. Isn’t that cheating?
Is it cheating? Or is it smart? That’s the real question, my friend.
If I instructed you now to form a girlband with two other female artists, who would you choose as the Kellys and Michelles to your Beyoncé?
It would never happen but I’d form a group featuring me, Miley, Selena and Taylor (5) . That would be pretty epic.
Finally, will you still sing Heart Attack when you’re at an age when the risk of heart disease is more acute?
Hopefully I’ll stop singing it a long time before then, but yes – I won’t be singing that song in a nursing home any time soon.
(1) The catchiest song on Lovato’s new album is mid-tempo belter Without the Love.