Finally free of a stifling contract, the soulful pop singer reclaims her powerful voice.
By the time that most artists release a first album, they have waited a lifetime to share their music with the world. For former teen pop star Joanna "JoJo" Levesque, it has taken nearly half her life to release her third, thanks to a battle with her previous label, Blackground Records, over a contract that prevented her from selling her own music.
Twelve years after her self-titled debut entered the Billboard 200's top five, JoJo is finally free. She reclaimed control of her career in early 2014, thanks to a loophole nullifying any agreement initially signed by a minor after a seven-year waiting period. "I called my mom and we cried," says JoJo, now 25, who immediately signed with Atlantic Records to record Mad Love, out Oct. 14. "I felt relief from the literal release. And then I had a bottle of champagne with my girlfriends!"