The singer returns to Seattle after playing Bumbershoot. She performs Friday, Feb. 17, at The Showbox.

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It’s only been a few months since JoJo last performed in Seattle, but the singer is looking forward to returning to the city this week.

“Seattle is one of my favorite cities in America. Beautiful and unique. I had a great time at Bumbershoot, but that was a festival gig. I’m excited to be bringing my Mad Love tour to the city and put on a full show,” said JoJo, who performs Friday, Feb. 17, at The Showbox.

Joann “JoJo” Levesque started her singing career at 6 years old, and, by age 8, she was performing Aretha Franklin songs on TV shows like “America’s Most Talented Kids” and “Destination Stardom.” At age 12, she signed a seven-album record deal with the now-defunct Blackground records.

Concert preview


8:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 17, The Showbox, 1426 First Ave., Seattle; $22-$25 (206-628-3151 or

Her 2004 self-titled debut album went platinum, and its lead single “Get Out (Leave)” made JoJo the youngest solo artist to have a No. 1 single in the U.S. The song’s cultish popularity helped her maintain visibility during years of a legal battle with Blackground.

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While she wrestled for autonomy from the label, she focused on her family and acted in two feature films, “Aquamarine” and “R.V.,” starring Robin Williams. She also starred in the Lifetime film “True Confessions of a Hollywood Starlet” in 2008. By 2009, Blackground released her from her contract.

Now 26, JoJo finally has a third full-length album. “Mad Love” captures the soulful depth the singer is known for, while under­scoring how she’s matured, personally and musically.

“My new album symbolizes resilience, growth, and a young woman figuring herself out. I’m proud of the way my fans have embraced these songs and stories,” JoJo said in a recent telephone interview.

The album showcases JoJo’s impressive range and control, and how age has curbed her tendency to oversing. Where 13-year-old JoJo may have overdone the vocal flourishes, mid-20s JoJo is restrained, adding in only the choicest runs that bolster the artistry of each song.

JoJo is also exploring EDM, adding processed voice, sweeps and eclectic beats that frame her voice in a modern context.

Notably, too, she brings Stanaj, a singer who has collaborated with Drake, with her on tour.

“ … His voice is just undeniable,” JoJo said, “I’m excited to introduce my fans to his music and I know he’s going to bring so much excellence to the stage every night.”