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JoJo readies long-awaited comeback with three singles

JoJo readies long-awaited comeback with three singles
JoJo released three singles on Thursday.The music teases her first album in nine years. (Atlantic Records)

JoJo is back.

The former teen pop-R&B sensation has returned with her first officially released music after a multiyear battle with a former label that placed her recording career in limbo.

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The 24-year-old singer, born Joanna Levesque, released not one but three singles Thursday to tease her long-awaited comeback album -- her first in nine years.

JoJo's release includes the Benny Blanco and Jason Evigan produced dance track "When Love Hurts," a stunning Harmony Samuels-helmed ballad titled "Say Love" and "Save My Soul," which the singer recorded in Stockholm with the Family.

All three tracks will be serviced to radio, beginning with "When Love Hurts," and the singer is planning on shooting the visuals in the coming weeks.

The new material officially puts to bed a tumultuous period of label purgatory for the young singer.

In 2004, the Massachusetts-bred singer seemed poised for teen-pop stardom.

Her sassy, R&B-kissed self-titled debut yielded singles such as "Baby It's You," "Not That Kinda Girl" and "Leave (Get Out)," which hit the top of the pop songs chart. At 13, she became the youngest solo act to land a No. 1 in the U.S.

But years after her stellar sophomore effort, 2006's "The High Road" -- it featured the massive smash "Too Little Too Late" -- a third album from the singer had yet to see release.

Most of the delay was the result of ongoing legal troubles with her longtime label, Blackground Music, that left her unable to issue new music commercially.

A few official singles surfaced, including the lush, alt-R&B stunner "Demonstrate" from Drake's producer Noah "40" Shebib (the album was shelved).

JoJo did sate fans by offering a set of mixtapes, collaborations and covers that helped her transition from the tween demographic and earn her a ton of hipster cred. There are also nearly 100 leaked tracks floating around on the Web from over the years.

In 2013 her battle with Blackground (once home to the late Aaliyah) went public after the singer filed a suit to be released from the label and its imprint Da Family Records.

In the suit, filed in New York State Supreme Court in July 2013 and obtained by the Los Angeles Times, the singer claimed that the labels had essentially held her hostage for the better part of seven years.

Among her complaints in the suit was that Blackground and Da Family failed to release her third album despite delivery and acceptance of recordings and that the labels neglected to pay producers and "other vendors" she collaborated with.

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More important, she argued that because her deal with the labels was signed when she was a minor, laws in both New York and California stipulated that she could not be bound to the contract after a period of seven years.

Early last year, The Times broke the news of the singer's deal with Atlantic Records.

The singer is streaming the new music on her official website.

For more music news follow me on Twitter: @gerrickkennedy

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