You’re playing five nights at Irving Plaza, was that to commemorate your hometown?
Yeah, you know I have been living in Paris for the last two years, and I have been away from the U.S. I have been touring Europe, Russia, and South America, so I have really been away, and it’s time to get back up in the people’s face and spend time where I come from.
You gave me one of my favorite New York moments, you played the Hammerstein Ballroom during CMJ week for the Bartender’s Ball a few years ago.
I remember that, because everybody was so drunk.
You’ve collaborated with all the greats from Aerosmith to Mick Jagger, is it true that you worked with Michael Jackson also?
Yeah, we did a song, and it’ll come out whenever they decide to do whatever they decide to do. It was one of the greatest experiences of my life, musically. We had a great time, we had fun, we laughed and we worked hard. He was a beautiful man.
Do you think they will ever release the song?
Something will happen. I am sure, but at the right time, it’ll be at the right time and the right reasons. Yeah.
What did you take away from the experience?
I think we taught each other something and we exchanged ideas and vibes. At the end of the day we come from many of the same places musically and working with someone on that level that’s been a musician and a performer and has been so genius since the age of five is a real honor. When we come together in the studio, it’s just two guys working. All that Michael Jackson, Lenny Kravitz stuff goes out the window and it’s just two kids in there working. It’s great when somebody like that after so long, still has that perspective. There’s certain people who are just jaded and over it at that point. Then there are those who are still excited and still moved by a creative moment. He still has that and I still have that and people that I have known, like Steven Tyler for instance. I like to bring him up, because he is still such a music fan. I was just hanging out with Bob Dylan in Paris and he is still so into it, I mean that’s what’s beautiful.
You mentioned still being into it and you’re headlining the Voodoo Music Experience this year, so are there bands on that bill that you’re eager to catch?
I am looking forward to seeing Kings Of Leon, I have never seen them live, and of course, I don’t care how many years go by, a great KISS show is always fun. That’s great. Gene always comes to my shows, they all support and they are great guys. When I was growing up, I moved to Los Angeles and I was a huge KISS fan.
Your mom, Roxie Roker [Helen Willis, The Jeffersons], was a wonderful actress. Did she teach you about celebrity and how to handle it?
Thank you. Yeah, she taught me that it’s a fantasy. You have to be comfortable with who you are, that person who you wake up in the mirror everyday. She really gave me the real values and family. She wasn’t trying to be fabulous, she simply was fabulous by being so grounded. She was all about family, love and respect. She was happy to have her job, it didn’t define her and she was just very humble.
Do you see your daughter, Zoe, following in your footsteps?
She’s doing it, she’s got a band and she’s making movies. She’s very creative and she’s teaching me some things. I am very proud of her and you’ll be hearing about her band, they are playing all over the country. They are called Elevator Fight and they are really good.
Catch Lenny Kravitz on the following dates: Oct. 15 and 18 at the Fillmore at Irving Plaza in NYC and Oct. 23 at the Wellmont Theatre in Montclair, NJ. lennykravitz.com.