Alicia Keys
“She’s a pretty cool girl in her own right, too.”

“I told her when I worked with her, ‘You influenced this song.’ I think she’s great.”

Britney Spears
“The rivalry was created by the media AND the fans. There is room for everybody. Britney is a very talented young lady. And the more people get to know us as artists, you’ll get to know how truly different we are.”

“Because we were on the Mickey Mouse Club together, we used to be best friends – and it’s so weird how our careers have taken us to these places where there’s this supposed rivalry. But I understand it because everyone’s always looking for something to talk about.”

“Britney’s a really cool girl. We were really close back when we were on the Mickey Mouse Club, and even watching her in interviews I find myself missing her lately. I’m really proud of her, how far she’s come and what she’s been able to accomplish. And to keep it together: It’s so crazy out on the road. I gotta give her credit for not just going berserk and letting everybody get to her. I just passed on my number to her through somebody. It’s good to have friends in the business who know what you’re going through.”

“It’s hurtful to her. One girl in my fan club even tried to insult her that she had them. It hurts my feelings to hear that stuff about us….” [about Britney being dogged by rumors of breast augmentation].

“It’s frustrating always being compared to Britney because we are two very different artists. We both dance and sing but people have not yet had enough time to realize that there is a huge difference between us. If she wants to go and do something, I’ll want to do the opposite.”

“Obviously, all the positive are very flattering, and being compared to Mariah, and I get a lot of Britney comparisons as well, and she’s extremely talented, but we are two different artists. And even when I’m doing radio interviews and stuff, they want to ask me very personal questions about her, and you have to be a little protective of yourself and what you say, because there are so many people wanting to get you to say things and pulling you in so many directions.”

“She’s really talented and I’m proud of her for getting out there and working her butt off. This is a tough business, so I give her much props. I did know her from the MMC (Mickey Mouse Club), but because of our schedules now we never really get to spend much time together. I would consider doing a duet with practically anybody. I thrive on creativity and seeing what other people have to offer. So you know, if she would be up to it, it’d probably be fun.”

“I have not been able to talk to Britney at length since we were best friends on the Mickey Mouse Club. I miss her a lot. I think she’s a really sweet girl who’s really talented. When we cross paths we definitely say ‘hey’. I miss the girl. Someone did my make-up for the July issue of Rolling Stone and the guy was going to see Britney in a week and I told him to give her my phone number, so I gave it. We’ll see if she calls. There’s no hard feelings or competition like everybody thinks there is.”

“I have seen websites where my fans are fighting with her fans about who is better. I thanked them for their support and said choosing sides is ridiculous. When Britney’s album came out, I was the first to buy it.”

“Britney and I are two very different artists in my opinion. She’s talented at what she does, but we’re different. I guess a lot of people want to compare us because we’re the same age out there in the same market, at the same time. She has a different style than I do.”

“Me and Britney came out around the same time and we were both from the Mickey Mouse Club. When people see a navel and blonde hair they lump you together. We are very different though; particularly on this record. I’m an individual, I don’t like to be categorized. I don’t see Britney very often but I respect her work and I hope she respects mine. We’ve known each other for years and there’s still a bond there but we don’t get to spend much time together. Whenever Britney’s song ‘Slave 4 U’ comes on, I’ll get on the table and dance. We approach our music very differently and vocally we’re different. She’s good at playing up at being the sweetheart but I can’t do that all the time.”

“My words were contorted in the press and I think maybe hers were too, so I wrote to her saying, ‘Look, I think the journalist was only poking for a response, there’s no need for this. We were thrown into this at the same time, we had a friendship once, so let’s not get caught up in the tabloids and have craziness forced upon us. From day one, people have been comparing us, so let’s not feed their game.’ I went on to tell her that I have great admiration for her work.”

“I’m about used to seeing her face everywhere now, but when Rolling Stone [with a Lolita-esque Britney on the cover] came out, I was like, ‘Oh, my God! This is little Brit-Brit?!’ ”

Donatella Versace
“This whole opportunity with Versace has been really fun. Donatella is an incredible woman! I found her to be very smart, generous and accommodating.”

Marshall Mathers / Eminem
“If he’s going to be immature, that’s his own thing. I’m not going to feed into it. Whatever. He did it… maybe to make sure he had a hit record – even if it was at the expense of using other people’s names, or dissing them. You know if that’s what you have to do to make a hit record, that’s pretty sad.”

“I don’t think I would feel a need to say a thing to him. He’s spoken his mind in his records and in interviews, and I’ve spoken mine. It just seems pointless to say anything to a guy who basically is retarded, for lack of a better word.”

“I know this is going to come as a complete shock to you (Eminem), but I don’t get off on a total stranger opening his big yap and putting me into some fantasy sex life. My life is private, and so is Britney’s.”

“We got a good chance to talk or whatever. We talked about it and he said his piece, I did mine, and it ended ind a hug. So he’s you know, it was all right.”

“Maybe because we both speak our mind and that can clash sometimes, I don’t know.”

“You know, yeah, I do respect him as an artist. I think he’s super talented.”

“My step dad was so cute. He was all ready to kick Eminem’s ass.”

“And if you’re going to be that retarded to think that’s a dis, then, you know, I’m not apologizing for anything.”

“When you insult a girl like that – I’m not going to go ‘Ha ha. what a kidder!’ As women, we have to deal with enough crap like that. I’m going to retaliate. If you’ve got words to say to me, say them to my face. You can find my number through your people.”

“We spoke backstage. I stopped him and he said he has no more grief with me and it’s water under the bridge. I told him he got mad at me for something that was not even directed at him. We both talked about our backgrounds and why we react the way we do. I think we have quite a lot in common; we like to speak our minds. He ended up giving me a hug so we have buried the hatchet. I like to address issues and bullshit.”

“The whole thing that happened before was blown out of proportion, and we just got to talk about it, clear things up, and ended in a hug and that’s that.”

“The reason why he got so mad, and why he retaliated so harsh at me, was partly because he was trying to separate himself from the whole pop MTV thing and he saw me on this MTV show choosing my 10 top videos. I guess he got really angry because I chose ‘Stan’ as one of my favorite videos – I thought [Eminem] was a really cool rapper – but [then I realized] that song was about killing his wife. I heard that and was just like, that’s not cool. It’s a personal issue. Watching what my mom had to go through, I don’t take that stuff lightly. I wasn’t dissing him, but I said my piece – I told girls out there not to put up with a guy’s shit. I guess he heard that, because I heard him talk about it when he dissed me in an interview. How cliché cute; is that? Like you get mad at a girl for speaking her mind it’s so high school.”

“I took Eminem to one side and confronted him about all that stuff he spouted in his songs about me. He was like a puppy. We hugged and made up.”

Enrique Iglesias
“But I do have fun on the side. Enrique and I have actually maintained friendship since the Super Bowl [where they both performed] and he’s a sweetheart, sent me flowers when I was sick and everything over the past two weeks. He’s just…he’s a wonderful person, really down-to-earth and for as gorgeous as he is, you wouldn’t expect him to be. It’s really cool talking to someone like that.”

Etta James
“Etta James was my favorite. She seemed so raw. You could hear all her emotions. She would go low. She would hit those high notes. She hit them raw with a growl and an aggression. I wasn’t sung so sweet; and to me that’s great. Other songs from back in the day – not of course written by the women who sang them but by a bunch of men who deal out what these women should be singing – can be appalling. It’s just crazy what was acceptable. Prime example: Billie Holiday used to sing the song ‘Ain’t Nobody’s Business’. Two of the best lines are ‘I’d rather my man would hit me than for him to jump up and quit me/Ain’t nobody’s business if I do’ and ‘I swear I won’t call no copper/If I’m beat up by my papa.’ But Etta came out, and she gave it to you raw. She was much more real than most. It took guts to be Etta James. I hear she will still take a man from the audience and she’d put his head in her crotch. She just goes to that point where other women would be afraid to go. Society has to criticize women for being open with their sexuality. Etta should get all the props in the world for being able to be that open and that strong. Etta really inspires me. I had young girls who looked up to me when I put out my first record: but, of course, that was not an honest representation of what I felt. My album, Stripped, is raw, emotionally real, kind of like Etta has always been. To have people appreciate the raw, honest me is what matters to me most. And I will only make honest, real music from here on out. That’s what Etta has always done.”

“I wanted to have her old-school effect at the same time as hip-hop. I wanted to get a little of a Dr. Dre record or even Ol’ Dirty Bastard. Jill Scott influenced me a lot as well she’s more recent.”

Fiona Apple
“I love the realness of [her album] and how she just plunges into her emotions and exposes herself. I really, really believe strongly in doing more of that myself. Pop music lacks a lot of depth or soul or heart, and maybe I can change that, as time goes by.”

Fred Durst of Limp Bizkit
“Fred Durst got no nookie. That did not happen, OK?”

“To me he was always saying, ‘Christina, you’re so talented,’ feeding me all this stuff. But he couldn’t tell his fans that so he took the little man’s route. I’m not the kind of girl who’s gonna say, ‘Tee-hee,’ and laugh it off. Hell no, you didn’t get no nookie! Screw you! I heard what he said about Britney, and it was really vulgar. He made such an ass out of himself and looks like a scumbag to everyone… End of story.”

Gwen Stefani of No Doubt
“I love what Gwen Stefani does with herself and her image and making it a little different, but she’s still glamorous at the same time. She’s a glamorous rock chick, and that’s really attractive to me, that’s really cool – -experimenting with different hair colours, hair styles, not afraid to be daring and funky, just changing it up.”

“I’ve been a fan of Gwen Stefani from the beginning; her lyrics are very honest and she has a great natural style. Everything about her really works.”

Janet Jackson
“I think it needs to be put to bed (Janet’s Superbowl appearance). There are a lot more things in the world happening these days politically or otherwise. People must be bored to still be talking about a boob – we all have them. It’s just like, come on, people are bored at this point to be still talking about a boob. We all have them.”

Johnny Depp
“Johnny Depp is hot. I like him because he’s not the stereotypical pretty boy.”

Julie Andrews
“I’m also a big fan of Julie Andrews. The Sound of Music was the first thing that truly spoke to me. It moved me the way she sang. It’s corny to say, but whenever Maria escaped to the hills and sang to herself, it was freedom and my escape as well.”

Justin Timberlake
“He’s a cool friend who knows how to party. Nothing romantic there. Sorry to disappoint.”

“I can so clarify that we’re definitely not going out! Definitely not! Never was! I’m not into dating a guy from a boy band, it’s not my thing. We’re just friends and I see him around but there’s definitely nothing there. We might meet on occasions and kind of end up hanging out at the same bars, or clubs, but that’s it, nothing else.”

“We can be like brother and sister. We have a great chemistry. We’re always joking around and being silly.”

Kelly Osborne of The Osborne Family
“Kelly must have a crush on me because she’s always saying mean things about me.”

“I had actually met [Kelly Osborne’s] brother, who was the coolest. I was like ‘Yo, what’s your sister’s beef with me?’ and he just had so many complimentary things to say. He was like ‘I have no beef with you, you’re great!’ and blah blah blah blah. He was really, really cool. So when I met her the other day, I was actually disappointed.”

Linda Perry of 4 Non Blondes
“She taught me that imperfections are good and should be kept because it comes from the heart.”

“She taught me not to be scared of my voice. She’d say, ‘You have to stop worrying about that technical stuff, the riffing and ad-libbing. Just let go and sing – whatever comes out.’ She’s like, ‘I hear something in you. You’ve got this repressed, darker side.’ Ithink it’s stuff from my past – my father and stuff. One of the new songs is more rock, and Linda got me singing/screaming for the chorus, ‘I just want to get away!’ It’s about freedom. It’s finding strength in myself.”

Macy Gray
“I was getting ready to applaud for her and put on my I’m-happy-even-though-I’m-a-loser face.”

“I totally idolize Madonna for what she’s done as a female in the industry and her artistry in general.”

“Madonna is amazing! From year to year she changes herself so much and her image. She’s always surprising people and that’s also what I hope to do with my career.”

“I admire Madonna’s business sense, her ability to reinvent herself, her thirst for knowledge and her drive. When I came out with the song Dirrty, I realised that she’s faced a lot of the nasty things I’ve faced. She did what she wanted to do and expressed herself.”

“If I were to meet Madonna, I seriously don’t know what I would do. She’s just almost like a goddess to me. This is a woman who’s been in the business for so long and been able to stay in it and reinvent herself and make smart decisions. So if I met her, I think there would be such an amazing energy around her, too, that it would just strike me as amazing.”

Mariah Carey
“It’s a huge compliment when people compare me to Mariah, since I’ve idolized her since I was 11.”

“But of those women with amazing voices [Celine Dion and Mariah Carey] I can’t think of one who’s pushed boundaries artistically. Mariah plays it safe. I mean, she tries, I guess. But I can’t stand up there in a gown and play it safe with a power ballad. I just can’t.”

Ricky Martin
“One of the sexiest men alive.”

“We haven’t met, but I’ve seen her. I really like her. I like how different she is-how she combines all this ethnicity.”

Sharon Stone
“She is cool. It’s good to have older friends in the business, because they’ve seen it and they’ve done it. A lot of madness they’ve gone through, you can relate to. It’s cool being able to vent sometimes and have someone truly understand.”

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