In a wide-ranging interview with Vogue, pop star Ariana Grande discusses her relationships with comedian Pete Davidson and the late musician Mac Miller, as well as the difficulties involved in recording her "Thank U, Next" album.
After virtually never publicly discussing her whirlwind romance and brief engagement with "Saturday Night Live" comic Davidson, Grande says that after breaking up with Miller in spring of last year, she relocated from Los Angeles to New York City to start fresh. "I met Pete, and it was an amazing distraction," she recalls. "It was frivolous and fun and insane and highly unrealistic, and I loved him, and I didn't know him. I'm like an infant when it comes to real life and this old soul, been-around-the-block-a-million-times artist. I still don't trust myself with the life stuff."
Of the drug overdose that killed Miller, a close friend both before and after their romance, the 26-year-old Grande reveals, "You have no idea how many times I warned him that that would happen and fought that fight, for how many years of our friendship, of our relationship." She adds, "By no means was what we had perfect, but … he was the best person ever, and he didn't deserve the demons he had. I was the glue for such a long time, and I found myself becoming … less and less sticky. The pieces just started to float away."
Grande also opens up about the compressed, two-week recording of her hit album "Thank U, Next" in October, almost immediately after Miller's death the month before. "I don't remember those months of my life because I was (a) so drunk and (b) so sad," she says. "I don't really remember how [the album] started or how it finished, or how all of a sudden there were 10 songs on the board. I think that this is the first album and also the first year of my life where I'm realizing that I can no longer put off spending time with myself, just as me. … So 'Thank U, Next' was this moment of self-realization."
During the interview she also becomes tearful discussing the 2017 Manchester bombing, which killed 22 people and injured at least 119. "It's not my trauma. It's those families'," she says, adding, "I'm proud that we were able to raise a lot of money [with an all-star benefit concert she organized a few weeks after the attack] with the intention of giving people a feeling of love or unity, but at the end of the day, it didn't bring anyone back."
After the bombing, "For a long time I didn't want to talk to anyone about anything, because I didn't want to think about anything. I kind of just wanted to bury myself in work and not focus on the real stuff, because I couldn't believe it was real. I loved going back into the studio with Pharrell because he just has this magical outlook on everything. He truly believes that the light is coming. And I'm like, Bruh, is it, though?"