Celine Dion on her new album, competition, and the Vegas strip

Quebec pop diva Celine Dion's first English-language disc in six years, 'Loved Me Back To Life',...

Quebec pop diva Celine Dion's first English-language disc in six years, 'Loved Me Back To Life', arrives Tuesday during a fall female artist new music bonanza. Ben Pelosse/QMI Agency

Jane Stevenson, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 12:01 PM ET

PALM BEACH, Fla. -- Quebec pop diva Celine Dion's first English-language disc in six years, 'Loved Me Back To Life', arrives Tuesday during a fall female artist new music bonanza.

Dion's album - which includes a cover of Janis Ian's 'At Seventeen' and a duet with Stevie Wonder on his song 'Overjoyed' -- will compete with the likes of new releases from Miley Cyrus, Katy Perry, Kelly Clarkson, Avril Lavigne, Lady Gaga, Britney Spears, Cher and more.

"I didn't know that - to be honest with you," says Dion.

"I haven't recorded (in English) for six years, did they stop for six years too? I think Lady Gaga's releasing every year. I think it's normal 'cause it's toward the end of the year, you have more albums. But last year, the year before, three, four, five, six before that I wasn't there.

"So now I have an album coming out amongst so many others as well because they're in show business and they're very active and I'm not at all. So now I'm having an album. I need to have new songs. Because My Heart Will Go On (on on)!"

But the 45-year-old insists she doesn't consider herself competing with others.

"I don't think it's a competition at all," says Dion, whose last album was 2012's French-language Sans attendre.

"I've been in show business for 30 years and let me tell you my friend, there's no such thing about trying to compete with the rest of the world. You'll never win.

"You're in competition with yourself. I am constantly ... I don't want to expect anything from any projects because I don't want to be disappointed but I love what I do and it matters. And I hope it's got a long life and I want to please the people who want to hear me or want to come and see the shows. It's teamwork, the fans and the artist. I don't sing for myself. I pick my songs because they need to come from within but it's to offer (them up) and hopefully it will be (loved). We love to please."

Dion plays nine tour dates in Antwerp and Paris in November and December before resuming her latest run at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas on Dec. 30 until March 19.

She says there are no plans to launch a world tour in support of 'Loved Me Back To Life.'

"Can you imagine? She's going to die!" she jokes.

Instead, "we're going to start, when we're back (at Caesars) to incorporate the new songs from the new album," says Dion.

We caught up with the married mother of three, nestled on a couch in a beachfront penthouse hotel suite near her Jupiter Island home, which she recently put on the market for $72.5 million.

'Loved Me Back to Life', which includes songs written by Sia (the title track) and Ne-Yo (who also sings on Incredible), has been described as "edgy" -- for you anyway.

New words, new sounds, new approach! No reverb in the sound. It's dry, very much present. It's fresh and it's fun ... I love it.

Did you purposely want a new sound?

I didn't want a new sound. We started the project and songs came to me and it brought a new sound because all those youngsters are writing for the oldies. And it was wonderful to feel that new sound. I could feel comfortable because you don't want necessarily to do, 'Oh, well, this is what's out there so let's do what's out there.' Well, what's out there? I can't compete with what's out there. Rihanna's Rihanna. Britney's Britney. You know what I'm saying? I've never done what's out there to be out there. So let me still do my thing but is there a way I can freshen up? And they brought it to me and I was ecstatic.

You worked with several new producers for you this time, including British producer Eg White whose known for his work with British pop singers like Adele, Duffy and Joss Stone.

Can you imagine? Sunny side up! He uses his own microphone. And his own pantyhose. You always have a net in front of the microphone to get the p's not so (popping) so this diffuses the p's a little bit. But instead of using the modern thing (there's) this old sock, this old pantyhose and I'm like, 'Ohhhh.' I wonder how many people have spit in that one?

Was Water and a Flame, after one of the songs on the record, going to be the original album title?

It was considered but it's wrong to consider a title before you're done with the whole album. And then we received more songs and then finally we thought that this title (was right), using the word love because I've used that for my whole life. At the same time, because I haven't recorded for so long I feel like I'm coming back to life. So it all makes sense to me.

Did you understand why Australian artist Daniel Merriweather got so upset with you for not mentioning his name as Water and a Flame's co-author (with Eg White) during your appearance on Katie Couric back in July?

To be honest with you, sometimes there are three or four people writing songs, and especially at the beginning of a project like this, you're learning your words, and you don't even know the song by heart. So you're like getting familiar with the names and it came from where and I didn't mean that (omittance) at all. I'm sorry if I offended him.

Do you see a time when you might perform in Canada?

Who knows if I can do a few shows in Toronto, or in the area, for the next little break coming ... I always feel like it's my loss for me not being able to travel in countries, or in my own home, my own country. We try to go as much as possible. I miss it all the time.

Does it feel like you've been in the music business for three decades?

Not at all. Sometimes the good thing about it, when I feel it and I know about it, it's so good that thing because it's like 'Whatever happens.' I don't need to do it and I don't feel like I need to prove myself. I'm just having a good time.

 

Dion wasn't comftorable in her own skin as a teen

Did Celine Dion herself "learn the truth At Seventeen?"

In a video presentation shown to journalists, she speaks poignantly about not being comfortable in her own skin as a teenager so she could relate to the lyrics of Janis Ian's 1975 coming-of-age classic, At Seventeen, which she covers on her new album, 'Loved Me Back To Life.'

"It was just awkward for me the way I was looking and the way that children treated each other and all that," says Dion.

"I was just happy in my house (in Quebec) and didn't want to leave ... Thank God at 45, we don't feel like when we're 15 ... I love being 45. I love being more mature and feel confident and have the maturity and the knowledge and I can say no. I'm very comfortable to say no. 'That's for me, that's not for me.' I hope success for my album, if not, it's not a mistake.

As for bullying by kids as it exists today, Dion thinks it's a whole new ballgame.

"I feel like the kids today they go through much worse than that and so I feel for them. I would definitely not talk to those girls.

"But let the people around those people who suffer, that maybe you're not even aware, if you see a subtle change around those people, that they used to talk and be comfortable and suddenly they stop talking and they're not forward as much, there's something going on. It's worth it to be talked to or to be heard. The siblings and the parents and the friends, to be aware."

 

Dion happy to share the Vegas strip with Britney Spears

Celine Dion, who has been performing on and off at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace since 2003 in a theatre built for her, welcomes the arrival of pop star Britney Spears on The Strip at nearby Planet Hollywood where she'll begin a two-year run Dec. 27.

"It's keeping Vegas alive and I'm for definitely having a lot of wonderful show business people to come and explore artistically," says Dion.

"Because honestly I think it's going to be a new approach and a new way to give the artist to do what they love and be stable. You can't tour all the time. It's very hard. It's hard. And when you're a mom and you have kids, you can't do this all the time. So Britney can be on stage and do her thing, and spend the whole day with her children. I think it's good for her."

Spears, 31, is a divorced mother of two. Dion, herself a married mother of three, can relate to the juggling act

"I'm a very well-balanced person and my kids are my priority. And I can still do my records and my show business and be on stage four nights a week. I think it's an amazing opportunity (for her)."


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