The Queen of R&B @MaryJBlige kicks off 2013 with a cover story and in depth interview with LA Confidential. Read some excerpts below and check out the interview here.

KS: I think a lot of Betty Shabazz’s empathetic—even wounded—dignity can be traced back to when she was the daughter of an unwed teenager herself back in Detroit. Can your empathy, your dignity, be traced back to your own wounded childhood?
MJB: I still have the child within me. She’s more around now than ever. She wasn’t around in the early days because I was pushing her back. I didn’t want anybody to hurt her.

KS: Somebody did hurt you. You were molested. I’ve written about my own molestation—though some people think those kinds of things should be kept to oneself.
MJB: Yes. That was very hard to deal with—my molestation—and sometimes I do go into that again. But I can’t do that so much anymore. That’s a prison.

KS: For so many of us your song “No More Drama” became a kind of key out of the prisons of our own pain—whether it was from abuse or molestation or drug addiction or alcoholism. You were preaching to us, Mary.
MJB: For me, it wasn’t preaching. For me, I was exorcizing demons. It’s extra hard for people like you and me because we want to be free and we speak about it.

KS: You’ve spoken openly about your addictions as well.
MJB: What I did was I chose to learn how to drink socially and it didn’t work. The test comes when you have to decide whether you’re drinking to be social or drinking to cover up something again. To cover up depression. To cover up guilt. Shame. Abandonment. All of that, man. Once I realized, “There you go again,” I had to stop. Whitney Houston’s death really affected me. Her death is another reason I stopped. I really do think I’m done. I looked at how that woman could not perform anymore.