J.Lo’s in love — and she’s not gonna hide it! After announcing her upcoming album This Is Me… Now, Jennifer Lopez spoke to Zane Lowe on Apple Music 1 about the record, revealing that the LP was inspired by her rekindling with the “love of my life,” Ben Affleck.
“We captured me at this moment in time when I was reunited with the love of my life and we decided we were going to be together forever. The whole message of the album then is this love exists,” she told Lowe. “This is a real love. Now I think what the message of the album is very much if you were wondering if you have, like me at times, lost hope, almost given up, don’t. Because true love does exist and some things do last forever and that’s real.”
“I want to put that message out into the world and that does take a lot of vulnerability. But I couldn’t stop myself and some parts of it scare me,” she added. “And I think parts of it scare Ben, too. He’s like, ‘Oh, do you really want to say all this stuff?’ And I’m like, ‘I don’t know how else to do it, baby.’”
The new LP is a bookend to her 2002 album This Is Me… Then, which featured several songs inspired by her relationship with Affleck at the time. (There’s even the song “Dear Ben,” which will now have a sequel on the new album. “It’s all right there on the record,” she said.)
During the Apple Music interview, Lopez admitted how much their split two decades ago really affected her — and why she refused to perform the songs that were directly about the actor.
“I wouldn’t even perform these records. It was so painful after we broke up,” she said. “Once we called off that wedding 20 years ago, it was the biggest heartbreak of my life, and I honestly felt like I was going to die.”
“It sent me on a spiral for the next 18 years where I just couldn’t get it right. Couldn’t get it right. But now, 20 years later, it does have a happy ending,” she added. “It has the most would-never-happen-in-Hollywood ending. ‘That would never happen. We’re not going to write that because nobody would believe it’ ending.”
Now, she and Affleck are able to reflect on the beginning of their love story with the record. About This Is Me… Then, Lopez says Affleck “loves that album. He loves that music. He knows all of the words,” she said. “He also was with me while I was creating it… He’s my biggest fan, which is awesome.”
On Black Friday, J.Lo announced the record on the anniversary of her 2002 album This Is Me… Then, recreating its cover and showing the art for her new record.
According to a press release, the project is set to feature new music from Lopez that “chronicles the emotional, spiritual and psychological journey that she has taken over the past two decades.”
While a release date has not been confirmed, This is Me… Now is expected to arrive next year.