It all comes full circle
The world first got to know Miley Cyrus as Disney Channel’s spunky Miley Stewart: Regular 12-year-old grade-schooler by day, pop superstar Hannah Montana by night.
As the children’s television series progressed into a certified hit, we witnessed Miley Cyrus “Breakout” and make a name for herself. We then watched her live it up during “The Time of Our Lives,” having herself a “Party in the U.S.A.” and providing an empowering anthem about “The Climb” that is life. In 2010, while on her path of self-discovery, she went out to prove she “Can’t Be Tamed.” And further going against the grain—making a media spectacle of herself in the process—she released “Bangerz” and the very peculiar “Miley Cyrus & Her Dead Petz” album.
Miley Cyrus, now with a little over a decade working in the industry, is at it again. “I think I’m just figuring out who I am at such a rapid pace that it’s hard for me to keep up with myself,” she tells Harper’s Bazaar. “People get told that it’s a bad thing to change. Like, people will say, ‘You’ve changed.’ And that’s supposed to be derogatory. But you are supposed to change all the time.”
This time, Miley is done with gimmicks and scandals and facades. She’s through licking sledgehammers and gyrating against a Beetlejuice look-alike onstage and she’s definitely finished with playing roles simply to appease other people.
via @MileyCyrus on Twitter
This new era of Miley by far highlights the most stripped down (however, not in the literal sense the Bangerz version of Miss Cyrus did it,) raw and honest version of the pop star: Her answer to a call to reevaluate the essentials and return to her roots.
“At one point, it was fun for me as a little girl to get dressed up as a pop star, because I wasn't one. It was fun for me to write about relationships in this innocent way, because I was young and innocent and discovering love and what that meant,” she tells NPR Music about her growth as an artist. “And so now, I write about it in a more evolved way, or a way that feels happy or more confident. But that's because as [I] grow up, I understand who I am in a different way. I'm happy to be who I am rather than running from it — but running from who you are is a total normal part of growing up, too, because you're just trying to figure out what parts of yourself you like and what parts of yourself you want to work on.”
The idea for her upcoming album “Younger Now” came about around the holidays: “I was dressed as a reindeer, and I had blinking earrings, and I had the antlers on, and my sweater was blinking and all that,” she recalls. “And my mom was like, ‘When did you become an eight-year-old?’ And I said, ‘I feel younger now.’ ... I feel less like I have anything to prove.”
Photo: Camilla Akrans. via Harper’s Bazaar
“I think when you are a teenager, young adult, you're trying so hard to be cool or to prove something or to be something away from who you've been as a kid,” she goes on to say. “And I guess as I've gotten older — what Younger Now says is, even though it's not who I am, I'm not afraid of who I used to be.”
Indeed, everything has come full circle for Miley Cyrus.
“Younger Now,” Miley Cyrus’ sixth studio album, comes out this Friday, September 29.