Alicia Keys is among the musicians and celebrities performing during the iHeart Living Room Concert for America, airing live on FOX on Sunday, March 29, at 9/8c.
In addition to being a multi-talented recording artist, Alicia Keys is also the wife of hip-hop artist Swizz Beatz and mother to two sons, Egypt and Genesis. In Keys’ new autobiography, More Myself, she gets candid about her professional and personal life, including the time when she found out she was pregnant with her second child and was faced with the choice about whether or not to keep the unplanned pregnancy.
A Song Keys & Her Husband Wrote Influenced Her Decision to Continue the Pregnancy
In an excerpt from Keys’ autobiography, shared exclusively with People, Keys revealed that when she found out she was pregnant, she said, “I wasn’t ready for this, which is what I told the doctor.” She continued, saying she told her doctor, “‘This is the worst time ever. I’m working on my next album. My husband just got into Harvard Business School. And I’ve been drinking—a lot.’ I left her office feeling so torn.” For Keys, she worried that taking a year off to have a baby would put off the release of the music she was making at the time, which, she said, “felt more important and urgent than just about everything.”
She then recalled the moment that helped her make her decision, writing, “While I was struggling over my choice, I went into the studio one evening and began listening to ‘More Than We Know,’ a song Swizz and I had written. The lyrics are about how we’re capable of so much more than we can ever imagine. My eyes filled with tears. How could I take away the potential for this beautiful child, this light that could touch others in ways I couldn’t dream of. For me, the song was a powerful message that I should go on with the pregnancy.”
In the chorus of “More Than We Know,” the lyrics read, “Cause baby we can do, ooh / More than we know / And baby, baby ooh, ooh! / There’s more than we know.” Another powerful moment in the song sings, “Do you trust in me baby? / When I tell you we can do it / Let me show you we can do it.”
It’s clear that Keys has a loving relationship with both of her sons, whom she shares photos of regularly on her social media. For Genesis’ birthday on December 27, 2019, she wrote, “Keep flying beautiful Genesis!! There’s only open sky above you! We adore you! You are so Powerful! And incredible! Wise and intelligent! I’m so blessed to be yours.”
Keys’ Mother Considered Abortion Before Choosing to Have Her
Keys’ autobiography features her mom Teresa Augello’s own story about considering an abortion before ultimately choosing to keep her pregnancy; Augello gave birth to Keys on January 25, 1981. After hearing her mom’s story and acknowledging their shared experience, Keys remarked to People, “It wasn’t until writing this that I realized, ‘Oh s—, she chose me,’ even through all the difficulties. How would she ever know what I was brought here to do? In a way we are parallel, but I didn’t even know that.”
Keys’ father, Craig Cook, left Augello when Keys was two years old, and many years passed where Keys and her dad did not have a relationship. That part of her life is explored in the autobiography, too. The book’s summary on Amazon explains, “As one of the most celebrated musicians in the world, Alicia Keys has enraptured the globe with her heartfelt lyrics, extraordinary vocal range, and soul-stirring piano compositions. Yet away from the spotlight, Alicia has grappled with private heartache―over the challenging and complex relationship with her father, the people-pleasing nature that characterized her early career, the loss of privacy surrounding her romantic relationships, and the oppressive expectations of female perfection.”