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Elle Varner went from mixtape queen to selling out S.O.B’s in New York City, and touring with Miguel and Trey Songz. She snagged a Soul Train award, a Grammy nomination and a shout out from the First Lady Michelle Obama, and she still doesn’t believe it’s all happening to her. 

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The big haired, big voiced songstress is the cover girl for the December issue of Vibe Vixen, sporting a colorful pout and a high bun. 

Coming down from the success of her debut album, Perfectly Imperfect, Elle chatted with the magazine about everything from how she is adjusting to fame, to the progress on her sophomore album. 

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Check out some excerpts from her interview below.

Fans cry at your presence these days. How does that feel?

It’s nuts [laughs]. I feel, honestly, that you have to constantly remind yourself that you are just like everyone else because everyone is treating you like you’re not. People are making you their savior, their role model, their idol. People actually love you, and it’s crazy. They’re like, ‘Don’t change’ [laughs] but you have to in a way. There’s no way not to. But you still want to keep the part of you that is pure.

Have you begun working on the sophomore album?

I think I really have to wrap my head around what has happened in the past year and a half and figure out what I want to say, because I basically told my whole life story up until the point of my [first] album. And as soon as that album was done, my life took a whole different turn. Now I’m just still getting used to it. It’s about more than sounds—what do I want to say?

How do you see yourself changing?

Being a little bit more serious. That’s something I’m starting to embrace a little bit more. When I am serious, I get so much accomplished. There’s so much room for me to grow as an artist. Maybe some of my sounds are R&B, maybe some of my songs are folk, maybe they’re just songs and there is no name for what it is. I embrace it because I think there is a new wave of R&B that, in a way, is not even R&B; there’s just nothing else to really call it. But you have artists like Frank Ocean, Miguel, myself—it’s not mainstream R&B.

Head over to Vibe Vixen for more. 

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