When you are a busy, globe-trotting music star like Norah Jones, you do not have time to indulge in romantic luxuries like Valentine’s Day.

In a telephone interview last week, the nine-time Grammy-winning American singer, pianist and songwriter tells Life! that she spent Valentine’s Day on the road with her band and touring crew.

Norah Jones talks about finding love on the road
— PHOTO: FRANK W. OCKENFELS

“We got in to Sydney late, about 7pm, so by the time a few of us went to eat dinner, everything was crowded so we had a pretty gross dinner but it was really fun,” she says with a laugh.

“They were playing a Valentine’s mix from the 1990s. There was Boyz II Men and it was kind of fun.”

The 33-year-old’s current world tour will take her back to Singapore, and she is set to perform at The Star Theatre on Wednesday.

It will be her first full concert here in 10 years. The daughter of Indian sitar maestro Ravi Shankar, who died aged 92 recently, and American concert promoter Sue Jones, last performed here at the Raffles City Convention Centre in 2003.

“Yeah, I remember being there. I don’t remember very much, I think I was very jet-lagged, I didn’t have any time off. So I’m excited to be there again.”

And while that gig saw her perform mostly tunes from her critically acclaimed and commercially successful pop/jazz debut album, Come Away With Me (2002), the setlist in her current tour features songs from her latest and fifth album, Little Broken Hearts, released last year.

“The shows have been super fun, it’s been a nice mix of old and new songs. It’s always fun to have variety with so many songs to choose from,” she says.

“The more albums I have, the more fun that list gets.”

Little Broken Hearts, a collaboration with acclaimed electronic/soul producer and composer Danger Mouse, cements her status as an artist whose music appeals to fans and critics.

Music pundits have praised the adventurous nature of the album, which marries folk, country, pop and rock, and it reached the top five in 15 music charts around the world.

More than just a singer, the best-selling artist, who has sold 50 million copies, has also had several high profile roles on the silver screen, including a turn as a soul-searching waitress in Hong Kong auteur Wong Kar-Wai’s romance flick My Blueberry Nights (2007).

She is also set to perform at the upcoming Oscars today, singing a tune from the soundtrack of Ted, a comedy that she had a cameo in.

The song, Everybody Needs A Best Friend, co-written with the movie’s director Seth MacFarlane, is in the running for the Best Original Song trophy.

Jones, who is not married but in a relationship, is tight-lipped about her personal life.

She and her half-sister, sitar player Anoushka Shankar, accepted their late father’s Lifetime Achievement Award at the 55th Grammy Awards early this month.

Jones was raised by her mother in the United States, while Anoushka, 31, grew up with their father in Britain and India.

And while she declined to comment on her half-sister’s recent claims about having been abused as a child by a family friend, Jones opened up a little more about playing her first gigs in India, her father’s homeland, next month.

“It’s very bittersweet. I’m playing there because he really wanted me to.

“I thought it would be nice for him to see me play there, but at least he knew I was and he was really excited. So it will be sad, for sure, but also really special.”

This article was first published in The Straits Times newspaper on February 25, 2013. For similar stories, go to sph.straitstimes.com/premium/singapore. You will not be able to access the Premium section of The Straits Times website unless you are already a subscriber.