July 1st, 2011
01:06 PM ET
Celebrities aren't immune to the tough calls of parenthood, and for Jada Pinkett Smith, being a parent has meant giving up her dream of being a rock star.
"I had to make choices," Smith, who is mom to actor Jaden and singer Willow, tells the August issue of Redbook. "Believe me, I would still be on the road with my band, Wicked Wisdom, and making as many movies as I can a year, and doing all sorts of other things if I didn't have the responsibility of a family."
But, she goes on, "I have children with their own talents and dreams, and I know I have to be standing next to them for that journey."
That's not to say that it's been easy putting her music career on hold.
"It was excruciating, completely excruciating," says Smith. "When Jaden was auditioning for 'The Pursuit of Happyness,' my band had just gotten an offer to open for Guns N' Roses in Europe. For me, that was unbelievable. But the choice was: I could be a rock star, or I could be on the set with my son to make sure he was healthy and happy. We all know how that story ended!"
"Let me tell you what I fear most: Them growing up like I did, in a house with drugs in a war zone, where if I walked out my door I could be shot. Hollywood ain't nothing compared to that!" she says. "Growing up in the streets of Baltimore, or the streets of Philly where Will grew up — I'd rather have my kids here. It still makes me nervous that they're part of something that isn't totally real, but it's up to Will and me to teach them what's real and what's not."
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