*For many singers, the key to staying around in the music business lies in delivering quality music for die hard fans mixed with the required radio singles for mass appeal.

For Sade, longevity is summed up in living in the moment after a long break between albums. To hear her tell it, the downtime is more of a positive in getting into the right frame of mind to deliver a stellar piece of work.

“Whatever I’m doing, I’m in that moment and I’m doing it. The rest of the world’s lost,” Sade recently shared with the Los Angeles. Times. “If I’m cooking some food or making soup, I want it to be lovely. If not, what’s the point of doing it?”

That mind state has served the singer well. Over the years, Sade has amassed a string of classic albums as well as a cult following and universal respect and admiration among artists young and old. Sade’s latest release “Soldier of Love,” was greeted with open arms as it hit No. 1 after a nine-year wait since her last offering, 2000’s “Lover’s Rock.”

Overall, gaps between albums can be, Sade believes, one of the secrets behind her band remaining intact.

“Without them we probably would have been d-i-v-o-r-c-e-d a long time ago,” the vocalist joked. “Actually, the gaps make making a record such a special privilege.”

That privilege also extends beyond the wax as Sade embraces the opportunity to bring her music to fans in a live setting. The half-Nigerian, half- English entertainer and fellow Sade group members Stuart Matthewman, Andrew Hale, and Paul Denman will embark on its first tour in 10 years in 2011. The outing will kick off its European leg in the spring before continuing in the U.S. in June.  

And while the best time to tour would’ve come when “Soldier of Love” was still hot, the Sade admits she “just wasn’t ready to do that” despite conceding that “that would have been the more sensible thing to do promotion-wise.”

“…. Sometimes I think you have to go with what you think is right as opposed to being a promotional tool for the album,” Sade said in regards to hitting the road more than a year after the release of “Soldier of Love,” which arrived in stores in February.

Going with what’s right may amount to a win for Sade, but it comes as a loss for anyone wanting to personally work with the singer. Recent victims of Sade’s no collaboration stance include rappers Drake and Jay-Z, whom the 51-year-old songbird politely turned down. The rhymesayers join a host of prominent MC’s who campaigned to personally work with Sade.

As intriguing as it would be to have your favorite rapper and Sade to mesh styles, the singer has her reasons for keeping the idea of collaborating outside her group as just that — an idea.

“I’m too scared,” she told the Times. “They’ll find me out. It’s like ‘The Wizard of Oz.’ They’ll find out there’s nothing there. As for collaborations, I’m collaborating with the band and do what we do. I see myself as a member of this band who does these songs that we write.”

Those looking to have a Sade vocal on their track should not feel too bummed. Obtaining a sample of the singer’s work has been the next best thing, as evidenced by songs from Krazie Bone (“Hard Time Hustlin'”), M.O.P. (“Slade”),  Snoop Dogg (“B**** Please”), Paul Wall (“Dripped Out”), MF Doom (“Doomsday”) and Angie Stone (“Everyday”- Mike City remix).

“When it comes to sample clearances, I’m probably the cheapest chick in the west,” said Sade, who revealed  her  love of sampling and the fact that she is not on Facebook or Twitter, despite her band having an official Facebook page.