Nicole ScherzingerNicole Scherzinger has fulfilled many a fantasy as the sexy lead singer of the Pussycat Dolls. But for her solo debut, Her Name is Nicole, this old-fashioned girl is making us wait for the goods.

On patience:
“I could never jeopardize who I am and what I stand for as a person, as a woman, as an artist and as a solo artist coming out now for the sake of [a release date]. Time or reason doesn’t matter when it comes to something this big, when it comes to your lifelong dream. I think I would definitely be a lot more frustrated if the album was out and I wasn’t happy with it.”

On going solo:
“It’s just one continuous journey. I started out just making music that showed the other sides of me. I am still exploring that. I don’t think I have found any definite number of songs that says, ‘This is it; this says who I am as a solo artist coming out.’ I haven’t found that yet. I am continuously being challenged and inspired. It’s safe because it’s not out yet, but it’s also scary because you really want to challenge yourself as an artist, to take risks. You want to do things that you’re not used to doing. I got to work with a lot of people that I wouldn’t have expected to work with. I was in the studio the other night, and I was like, ‘I didn’t even know I could do this. This is great!’”

On media portrayal:
“I don’t think they show my story. I don’t think they show who I am. Sometimes, when I read my stories, I am not interested So why are other people going to be interested? I know that here is more stuff in here. There are more stories and more interesting things to talk about than what lies on the surface. When I read stories about myself, it just seems so one-dimensional, kind of shallow, I think.”

On setbacks:
“Sometimes, you’re walking and you don’t know where the path is going to lead, but you keep going past those obstacles [because] you know that there is a promised land after all that hard work. And if you’re true to yourself, are willing to fall sometimes and are willing to open yourself up, then in the end it will all be worth it.”

On gossip blogs and paparazzi:

“I do what I do, and they do what they do. I try to keep my mind clear of that because to me it’s not real. It’s not why I am here. I could be open to that and let it taint me, but it’s up to me to be like, ‘That’s over there, and I am going to be over here doing my thing,’ and that’s my music and working on myself.”

PHOTOGRAPHY BY NINO MUNOZ

Check out the full Nicole Scherzinger photo gallery here!