Sound Check: Robin Thicke – Soldier of Love

A movie theater screen exaggerates every detail–a facial reaction to an unexpected explosion in the heat of war, tears streaming down the faces of the broken-hearted, a long-awaited kiss. While filming, actors may reenact any of these scenarios several times before the director captures their perfect take. If it’s not going according to plan or expectations, the director will likely yell “Cut!”, abruptly halting the scene to make corrections.

Real life though, with situations involving war or love, does not discontinue play on command. It keeps rolling.

Platinum-selling singer/songwriter Robin Thicke admits to proudly admiring the work his wife, actress Paula Patton, does on the big screen. It’s their real lives, the one they share without a script or cameras in their faces, that has inspired Thicke’s pen over five albums.

While touring Atlantapromoting his fifth studio release Love After War, Robin Thicke stopped rolling to discuss real love, real war, and the need for conflict with SoulTrain.com.

Soul Train: Robin, how many times have you been told you’d make a great James Bond?

Robin Thicke: [Laughs] A couple times, but not too many. But it’s nice to hear!

Soul Train: Do you agree?

Robin Thicke: Well… [Laughs] Who doesn’t want to be James Bond? I think anyone would, at least for a little while.

Soul Train: What is it about this character that makes people think of him when they see you?

Robin Thicke: Maybe it’s the manliness, but also the romance. James Bond is a romantic character. He always has a few women around and he romances them instead of just sleeping with them. He really knows what to say. Maybe that’s what I’m good at! [Laughs]

Soul Train: Maybe… Or could it be his etiquette?

Robin Thicke: Oh yeah, of course! It’s the class and sophistication. I’m not nearly as classy as James Bond, but I try sometimes. [Laughs]

Soul Train: I can definitely hear you singing the theme to a James Bond movie. A grand sounding number, maybe you and The Roots produced by Brian Eno.

Robin Thicke: That would be great! That would be hot! I love The Roots, and Eno is brilliant.

Soul Train: When was the last time a movie had you emotionally “shaken” and “stirred”?

Robin Thicke: Obviously I have to say my wife’s movie Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol! I was so happy for her! She’s my best friend and my life, so I was so excited to see her in such a big movie and doing all these action stunts. I was emotionally overwhelmed. And the movie is good! They did a great job.

Soul Train: Could you play a super soldier-type character, be the person responsible for world peace?

Robin Thicke: A guy who ensures peace across the whole planet?! [Laughs] Absolutely! I’d love to take credit for that! That’s a pretty cool thing to have done in your life; be someone who ended all wars.

Love After War (Deluxe Version) - Robin Thicke


Soul Train: Would you accept a role in a heart-wrenching war drama if the right producer and director presented you the right script, something emotionally intense like Saving Private Ryan or The Patriot?

Robin Thicke: I would definitely get into it depending on if the script is good.

Soul Train: Okay, what about a real life war? Could you have served asU.S. soldier? Do you think your heart could handle being away from your loved ones and not knowing when or if you’d see them again?

Robin Thicke: Ahhh man… That’s why we respect what our troops do so valuably. They sacrifice their lives and limbs so the rest of us to live peacefully. I couldn’t do it. I wouldn’t want to be away from my girl, my babies, my family. I wouldn’t want to worry my life was threatened on a daily basis. I couldn’t go through that. And I am happy to see our troops coming home.

Soul Train: Did you visit the troops overseas or do any shows for them?

Robin Thicke: No, but I’ve gotten to visit them at the Walter Reed Medical Center in DC. And we don’t know what’s in those hospitals, you know? I got to see it first hand and put names with faces, and the wives and families. The interesting thing was almost everybody I met had gotten injured on their third tour.

Soul Train: What??!

Robin Thicke: That is the craziest thing! Almost all of the patients I got to meet were all on their third tour when they got injured. I realized how terrible that is: you go over there once, you come home and you’re good. You back, you come home and you’re still good. Then that third time…it’s a roadside bomb and there’s your leg. It’s just amazing what these guys have to deal with.

Soul Train: That is seriously unfortunate, heartbreaking, too. Did any of them, or their loved ones, tell you it was your music that helped them deal with those situations?

Robin Thicke: Yes. They told me it was one of my songs that connected them before they went on tour. Now that’s their song. Or it’s their wedding song. It’s nice to be a part of anything that connects people together. To be part of any type of love or celebration, that’s the art of music. It brings people together who want to celebrate life.

Soul Train: How important do you feel conflict is to establishing a connection?

Robin Thicke: I think conflict is necessary because none of us are the same. We’re all ever-changing. We have to learn to resolve conflict through compassion and open-mindedness.

Soul Train: When you think about what people go through just in the name of love, does it make you want to write inspiring music or does it frighten you, making you want to rescue everyone?

Robin Thicke: I think it’s both. I’m afraid of life, and pain, and having my heart broken, not being able to provide for my family and losing the ones I love. I feel all those fears. But I also like to sing about the joy of life that possesses all the beauty that’s here.  It kinda depends on how I’m feeling that day; sometimes I feel like I need to lift myself up, sometimes I feel like I want to celebrate how great everything is.

Soul Train: Robin, is there anything about being a recording artist that would make you considered a hero?

Robin Thicke: No. There’s nothing. Real heroes are soldiers and leaders. Artists are not heroes, we’re just artists. We’re speaking about our lives and our feelings. We help connect people, but we don’t literally save them. They save themselves.

For more on Robin Thicke visit his official website www.RobinThicke.com.

–Mr. Joe Walker

Mr. Joe Walker, a senior contributor for SoulTrain.com, is an acclaimed entertainment and news journalist published thousands of times regionally, nationally, internationally, and online. He loves to create, loves that you read. Follow him on Twitter @mrjoewalker. Also visit ByMrJoeWalker.blogspot.com and TheUIMag.com.

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