If you’re waiting for a new Britney Spears album, it sounds like you’re going to be waiting for a very long time — maybe forever. On Wednesday, hours after “Page Six” reported that Spears had brought on Charli XCX and Julia Michaels to work on a new album, Spears took to Instagram to deny the rumor.
“Just so we’re clear most of the news is trash!!! They keep saying I’m turning to random people to do a new album … I will never return to the music industry!!!” Spears wrote alongside a Guido Reni painting of Salome carrying John the Baptist’s head on a tray. She explained that she writes songs for fun or for other people, adding: “I’m a ghostwriter and I honestly enjoy it that way!!!”
The last time Spears performed live was October 2018. Three months later, she announced that she was going on an “indefinite work hiatus” to care for her sick father. In 2021, she wrote on Instagram that not doing music was her “way of saying fuck you” to her family, who benefited financially from her performances during the 13-year conservatorship that controlled nearly every aspect of her life. In her recent memoir, The Woman in Me, Spears wrote that her desire to entertain had waned over the years and that she was “struggling” with the idea of performing again after years of being forced to work.
Spears’s last album, Glory, was released in 2016. After her conservatorship ended she released two tracks: “Hold Me Closer” with Elton John in 2022 and “Mind Your Business” with Will.I.Am in 2023. Maybe Spears will have a change of heart, but for now, her fans can join Rihanna’s in the never-ending limbo of hoping for new music.