01/17/2011 at 01:00 AM EST
Catch the 53rd Annual GRAMMY AWARDS Sunday, Feb. 13, 8/7c on CBS
The British singer, 52, who is up for two Grammys, chats about her 10-year break, music she loves and staying ageless
WHAT SHE'S BEEN UP TO THE PAST DECADE
I've changed my life quite a lot. I've left the city and gone back to my country roots. I've had many ups and downs since my last album [in 2000]-I suppose a colorful life gives me stories to tell in my songs.
FAVORITE CURRENT ARTISTS
I loved "Revelry" by the Kings of Leon, and Jay-Z and Alicia Keys' "Empire State of Mind" is a modern classic. I listen to the same music 14-year-olds do, like Rihanna
, Lil' Wayne and Tinie Tempah, because that's what goes on in my house. I'm excited by Janelle Monae-I'm sure she'll go far.
I always dream one day my life will have some kind of order, but my life's like a runaway train. I just about stay on the tracks, but you can never be sure which station I'll stop at.
WHAT HER KIDS THINK OF HER MUSIC
When my daughter [Ila, 14; her dad is Bob Morgan, a Jamaican producer] was a baby and I sang to her, she often cried, so my expectations have never been that high. Now she is older and quite discerning, so I'm very grateful that she loves what I do. My stepson [Jack, 19, son of her current boyfriend, Ian Watts, a former Royal Marine] too. I can't pretend it wouldn't hurt if they didn't. They both have a broad spectrum with their musical likes, and they are both really passionate about music.
HER TAKE ON ROMANCE
I have a strange view on it. I would be more likely romanced by a man who carries my grandma's handbag than one who brings me champagne and flowers.
I don't exercise, but I keep moving. My ambition has always been to be superfit, but unfortunately I don't like any formal exercise because it hurts! I do dance, though, especially in the kitchen.
A SURPRISING SADE FACT
I have a dog named Chicken!