Amid the online pouting, posing and preening, and in an age when media-trained celebrities are reluctant to stick their heads above the parapet with an opinion, thank goodness there remain “dissenting voices” (her words) to redress the balance. Loudly.
“There are some people who are very successful because they never come out with a political opinion or anything too edgy cos they wanna be liked by everybody,” she says. “That’s not how I was raised to be. We don’t always agree in our family but we talk. We debate.”
She lowers her voice and breaks into an impression of her father Jim, whose nickname is Mr Cause on account of his activism.
“Dissent is the cornerstone of democracy, daughter,” she growls. “And sometimes you have to stand on a hill by yourself!”
She unleashes an earthy cackle.
“See, this is the s**t that’s been in my head since I was two, so I can’t be any other way!”
When Kim Kardashian famously plastered a completely starkers bathroom selfie all over social media last year, it prompted Pink to respond on International Women’s Day with a “shout-out” to women to use their brains, their strength and their talent and to “keep on resisting the urge to cave”.
She didn’t namecheck Kim, but was it a dig?
“I don’t wish anybody ill and I respect everybody’s hustle,” she says today, sitting in a Los Angeles hotel room not far from her home in Venice. “I’ve never pretended to be perfect and I’ve never said I haven’t taken my clothes off in photographs myself.
“But naked selfies in a bathroom don’t boost your self-esteem and I just think there needs to be some voices who are dissenting because right now that’s the majority. The majority want to take their clothes off, take pictures in the bathroom and post it on Instagram or Snapchat or whatever.
“It’s not empowering. You’re not being good at anything. Nobody respects that. They might envy it, they might be jealous of it, they might wanna f**k you. But they don’t respect you.
“There’s nothing wrong with being sexy or in charge of your own body. But let’s all ask ourselves what are we really doing it for because if that’s feminism…? Pfft. Well, it’s not what it used to be.”
She rolls her eyes and says she knows she’ll be accused by some of being self-righteous. Or a hypocrite.
“People can throw rocks at me but I will be one of the voices. I may even get drowned out because there aren’t enough of us. But I’ll tell you: F**k. That. You don’t have to do that to be successful. There are other options.”
After a five-year hiatus from releasing new music, during which she gave birth to her second child, wrote her new album, and turned in a few live performances,it’s good to see that Alecia Beth Moore, 38, has lost none of her chutzpah. She’s a sheer joy to interview;full of wit, warmth and intelligence, and with brilliant, effortless comic timing.
The pop world has missed her but Pink is very definitely back – new album Beautiful Trauma boasts some of her strongest vocals to date. The first single What About Us, a soaring synth-heavy dance track that peaked at No.3 in the UK this summer, has been labelled a political protest song, railing against the ascendancy of Donald Trump. She says the timing of the release was “like kismet”.
Trump might be a figure of fun to some, but Pink’s not laughing.
“This country [America] is in a really s**tty spot right now with separation and segregation and racist s**t going on.
There’s nothing funny about promoting hatred. He’s a bully.
“I don’t actually think he’s that powerful. I really don’t. I think he’s inspiring more powerful people to do awful things… but himself? I think he’s just kind of an idiot.
“If you look at his businesses, he’s bankrupted so many of them. I know a lot of really successful business people and they’ve never done that. Maybe once. But not like four or five times.”
So what happened? How did he end up as president of the United States?
“The spectrum of human potential is amazing. Human beings can be absolutely amazing and human beings can be absolutely vile. I can be f**king amazing and I can be so awful I hate myself.
“What he did was bring out the worst in all of us.
He made people think it was OK to be that. I think that’s what’s happened, and the butterfly effect means that the world is in a shambles.
“But there are more good people than bad. And that’s why this album is called Beautiful Trauma, because life is traumatic, but there are a lot of beautiful people doing beautiful things and you can’t hold us down.
“And rock bottom is a great place to start to change. I try to think that because otherwise it’s really scary.”
In the past 17 years, Pink has sold over 40 million albums and 70 million singles (including Don’t Let Me Get Me, Just Like A Pill and Just Give Me A Reason), winning three Grammys, a Brit and a shedload of MTV awards.
Her fiery 16-year relationship with former motocross racer Carey Hart, 42, has become almost as legendary as her music, not least because she’s documented their many trials in her lyrics, perhaps most famously with 2008 break-up anthem So What. They married in 2006 and went on to have daughter Willow, six, and son Jameson, 10 months.
“Carey and I just scratch our heads sometimes. We’ve been together for 16 years off and on – mostly on – and sometimes you look at someone and you think: ‘I could never live without you. You get me in a way that no one else could.’
“And then literally five minutes later it’s like: ‘I’ve never liked you. There’s nothing I like about you. I don’t ever want to talk to you ever again.’ Ha ha!
“There are rough times and there is always that fantasy, that parallel universe, the what if, what could? Are we even right for each other after all this time?
“But at the end of the day… we’re never done with each other. Even when we thought we were done, we weren’t. And thank god because we went on to have our two babies. So we just keep fighting the good fight and I keep writing songs about it.”
The blazing rows that used to characterise the relationship have subsided now. They attend regular couples therapy for “maintenance” and have a rule that they don’t fight nasty in front of the kids.
“We’re a lot better than we used to be, but when we’re really mad at each other it’s really ugly. My parents, they hated each other. It was WW3 in our house, it was eff you, get the eff out, and Carey and I swore we’d never do that.
“But if we have a truth that we need to talk about, yeah we’ll disagree in front of Willow. Conflict resolution is really important to teach kids. We’re human, we’re not always going to agree. I don’t even agree with myself half the time! And Willow needs to see that.
“So we disagree and we communicate but we don’t fight. And what it comes down to is that I’m right and he’s wrong. Ha!”
Ask her how she’s coping with the sleeplessness since Jameson came along last December and she crosses her eyes in mock delirium.
“It’s the most amazing, overwhelming, beautiful, terrifying blessing in the world. And yet sometimes I can’t believe how sad I feel. Ha ha ha!
“It’s all down to sleep deprivation. There’s a reason they use that as a torture device. I haven’t quite figured [parenthood] out yet.”
Not figured it out? Anyone who watched Pink’s now famous “We don’t change” speech at the VMAs in August, as she accepted the prestigious Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award, might argue with that. She used the opportunity to deliver a poignant message to Willow, who had recently confided out of the blue: “Mama, I’m the ugliest girl I know.”
In the speech Pink told Willow: “Baby girl, we don’t change. We take the gravel in the shell and we make a pearl and we help other people to change so that they see more kinds of beauty.”
The clip went viral. And no one is more surprised than Pink herself, although her overwhelming feeling is one of sadness that it made such an impact.
“In some ways I think that’s beautiful because girls and boys need to hear that they’re OK just the way they are, but it’s also really sad that it resonated with so many people. Just how many people are feeling that way and raising kids who are feeling that way? It makes my heart hurt.”
She says Willow has been distinctly unimpressed by the attention it brought – Pink and Carey are currently grappling with making sure she’s as unaffected by their fame as possible.
“How to bring her up in this circus we live in and make sure she has a healthy outlook on how society views celebrity women and celebrity in general is going to be a lifelong conversation.
“I tell her being famous is just silly. It really doesn’t matter. The only thing it’s good for is dinner reservations – that part’s awesome, by the way – but other than that it’s dumb.”
There are other perks, though. Being able to call on Eminem to work with you on your album, for example. Pink managed to coax the enigmatic rapper out of wherever he’s been hiding and convince him to feature on Revenge, the second track on Beautiful Trauma.
“I just love him,” says Pink. “He’s a lyrical genius. I’m a feminist and I fight for gay rights and women’s rights, whereas he says the most f**ked up things. But he makes me think that sometimes can’t we just take the p**s and take some of the heaviness out of this stuff? This song is just fun.”
The latest collaboration (they previously worked together on Won’t Back Down in 2010) came about after Pink sent him a drunken email “basically professing my undying love for him”.
She says: “I wrote the song with Max Martin and Shellback, and we were drinking a lot of wine. It started as a joke. I said I wanted a rap Grammy! I wanna rap Grammy!
“And then I went home and I was kinda thinking about it and thought: I want Eminem on this song. So I emailed him: ‘Dude, you know I love you, I’ve loved you since I asked you for your autograph in 2001 at the MTV Awards and I know Rihanna’s way hotter than me but I’m funnier! And I wanna rap with you, I wanna rap Grammy and I want you to be on this song with me.’
“And he just wrote back: ‘OK.’ And then four days later, there it was.”
But then, Pink’s probably not the sort of woman many people say no to. She has always had drive and ambition, although she says she’s had to work harder than some of her contemporaries to be accepted by the mainstream.
“People who don’t like me say: ‘Ah, she’s snarling and bitching about boys and it’s that whole loud Pink thing and I can only listen to her when I’m on a treadmill.’
“I’m very polarising. I have a lot of opinions. I’m one of those females who you’re either gonna agree with or never want to listen to again. And I’m cool with that because it’s authentic.”
However, she has mellowed ever so slightly. Motherhood has done that.
“I didn’t used to be very thoughtful about things. And I think it’s a product of age and being a mom that I consider more now, which makes things more nerve-wracking.”
She pauses for the punchline. “Because, believe me, it’s a lot easier to just blow s**t up and keep moving.”