Ashanti Drafts Pharrell, Dupri For New Disc

As its title suggests, Ashanti's new "The Declaration" is in many ways about womanhood and empowerment, which led the Long Island, N.Y., native to work with new producers.

As its title suggests, Ashanti's new "The Declaration" is in many ways about womanhood and empowerment, which led the Long Island, N.Y., native to work with new producers. The set is due June 3 via The Inc./Universal Motown.

"It's been a long time coming for change, and the timing was just right," she tells Billboard.com.

First single "The Way That I Love You," is No. 18 on Billboard's Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart this week. Robin Thicke, Jermaine Dupri, LT Hutton, Babyface, and Pharrell Williams are among the album's producers.

Ashanti says "The Declaration" "touches on those low points in life that determine whether you're strong enough to go on. It reminds women that they can't let things get the best of them."

The album is expected to feature "Mother," inspired by Ashanti's close bond with her own mother, and "Click," which she says is "a relationship record done from a female point of view. It's about when you're trying to get in contact with someone you're seeing but he's not answering, and by the time he calls you feel like, 'I don't want to talk to you now.'"

Ashanti is also working on a teen-skewed lifestyle book titled "Ashanti Style" via Jump at the Sun/Hyperion, but no release date has been announced yet.