She’s the scorching new edition to the Rap pack, rising to fame via the controversial yet well received number ‘PUY‘.
Now, one year after her explosive arrival on the scene, Iggy Azalea readies the release of her debut album ‘The New Classic’, set to launch later on this year.
So, ever eager to serve the content you love, That Grape Juice caught up with the MC days ago for an interview on music, fame, ‘Classic’ and… Azealia Banks.
Sam: You’ve received an ample amount of buzz since bursting on the scene. Why do you think that has been?
Iggy: I don’t think there are any Female rappers that sound like this sound, or are from where I’m from or [share] my story.
A lot of people like to just follow me on the music, but in this day and age people have an interest in the overall person, their overall package.
A lot of the fascination with me is “where the hell did she come from?”. That sort of thing helped me out.
Sam: You mentioned where you came from and a little about your back story. For those that aren’t in the know, what is your back story? Tell us a little about yourself.
Iggy: I’m Australian. I come from a really small town in Australia. I grew up on the beach. (Laughs) I was kind of a wild child.
I came to America when I was sixteen to try and be a Rapper and during that time I lived in like a million different cities, just learning from some of the best songwriters- just learning how to write.
Eventually I moved to LA and put out a song called Pu**y. I put out a video for it and I guess the rest is history.
Sam: Your debut album, The New Classic is set for release this year, what can fans expect from it thematically?
Iggy: I don’t know. I feel like I’m still experimenting, trying to figure out exactly how it’s going to sound.
Sam: While you’re still figuring out the sound for the album, who have you been in the studio with as of late?
Iggy: I’ve been in there with the Bingo Players and Diplo.
Sam: To clear through the clouds, what is your label situation?
Iggy: It’s Grand Hustle, just Grand Hustle. I have another company investing in me so I earn from my music. Like, I earn the rights to all my stuff, I have an independent person handling every cheque.
Sam: Is that how it’s going to be with your movement going forward? Grand Hustle with private investment?
Iggy: You know, I don’t know. For me labels do not provide a lot besides to bankroll your project now a days.
Most artists that you see that are successful have their own camp and do things internally.
A really good example of that is Lady GaGa –she has her own team. There’s will.i.am, who is a really good friend of mine, and he too has his own team and his own production and does everything internally.
That’s because people get fired and hired from labels. I just felt like if I can get a lot of money somewhere else and still own the rights to my music, why would I move to a major label?
There are reasons why, but for right now I don’t think it applies to me. I’m not Lady GaGa, I’m not Nicki Minaj, I’m not 50 cent, I’m not a big humungous superstar to the point where I’d need all the other outsources right now.
I just handle my sh*t, I have a team we are doing just fine.
Maybe in time I’ll choose a major and have major distribution. It’s a possibility but may not be needed.
Sam: In a perfect world what would an Iggy Azelea contract look like?
Iggy: (Laughs) Do whatever you want and use the money.
Sam: We’re loving you in business mode. Run us through the creative process when you’re making a track.
Iggy: I like to hear the beat, I’ll be in there when they make it, I make up in mind and decide how I’m going to Rap.
I do a bunch of mumbles, I get that going then I put words to it, I don’t know. It really depends on what I feel like.
If I’m is regular mood ill talk about stupid stuff and have fun wit it. If I’m completely and utterly depressed I usually talk about love and that usually works.
That’s it, it’s pretty easy. In between that is like 6 hours of p*ssing about with your friends.
Sam: You are renowned for your style, as you said you are at the infancy of your career or at least your mainstream career. As an observer, and also as an artist ,do you feel there is pressure on Female Rappers to sex it up to gain notoriety or to gain attention?
Iggy: No. I think there’s a lot of pressure on women in society it’s the same of you’re a rapper, your a singer, an actress or a girl that works in the coffee store to sex it up. I think, you grow up and they tell you that on the television and you owe it to the f*cking universe that you should look a certain way.
You’ll get a good man, then you’ll have a successfully job. I mean, just look at all the shows.
I was watching one called Single Ladies the other day, and I think its so funny because they wear in the day what they would wear to the club at night, and I think, why are you wearing that.
I don’t know any girls that dress like that real life. It’s just really stupid.
There’s this under current thing that gets put in everyone’s mind to the point where they think that, and buy into it.
I’m not sexy or sexual because I don’t think I owe it to anyone or that’s the formula. I will do it to the extreme because it’s f*cking stupid. I control my sexuality and what I think is sexual, I’m not going to do it in a way that you set the limitations for.
Sam: Definitely. Who would you say are your biggest musical inspirations?
Iggy: I like David Bowie, I think he’s really cool. I like Pink Floyd, I really like Andre 3000. Who else? I like Tupac, I love Missy Elliot and Busta Rhymes.
I love Method Man and Redman, I think they’re technically great but they’re not afraid to say silly shit and say whatever they want. In Rap a lot of the time people are really afraid to say stupid stuff because there’s always a critic to question them.
Raps are supposed to be story telling. The Rappers I love are the ones who have fun with it what they do but who are also really good. You know, the ones who never had the standard videos. I mean, Busta Rhymes was just the f*cking coolest in videos like Break Your Neck– which I think was one of the best videos ever.
To be honest, I just like people who aren’t afraid to have fun and do what they think is cool.
Sam: With a lot of praise comes a lot of criticism. What is your response to people who attribute your buzz to color of your skin?
Iggy: If it was entirely based on skin color then you would have to ask yourself… Am I the first white girl ever to rap? The answer to that is no. If it was solely based on race we would have seen what’s happening now a long time ago.
Sam: I agree. What’s your take on the Female Rap game. Lets say now compared to 5 years ago. Do you think that it has regressed? Do you think it’s improving? What’s your take on it?
Iggy: I can’t give really give you a take looking back in retrospect because I was never a part of it.
I was 15 at home in my lounge listening to ladies night with Eve and Rah Digga you know (laughs).
From the outside looking in, you really don’t know how it is. I really wasn’t a part of it, so I cant say how it’s different now. I was just a fan then. In saying that I don’t think Female Rap ever left, and if it did it was only for about 2 years.
I mean, I know is I was listening to Eve songs in 2005 and then in 2008 I heard about Nicki, so it’s not like it came back from the dead- like it was gone for that long.
There wasn’t some epic journey to find the next Female Rappers. There have always been Female Rappers out there. I’d compare it to Rock. Where are all the solo Rock singers? They didn’t disappear. They’re out there, but I feel it’s a case of them not being on the radio as much as they used to be.
That doesn’t mean they’re dead. However, it does mean that when artist from that genre does really well everyone assumes there’s a ‘second coming’.
Sam: You mentioned that there are a lot of Female Rappers out. For me, as someone that runs the site, I definitely identify yourself and Azealia Banks as two of the of the girls everyone is really buzzed about at the moment.
She’s said a few things about you in the past, what’s your take on her?
Iggy: I think that she has a lot to say about everybody and everything.
She, for some reason, wants to share the way that she feels about different artists with the world, that’s fine.
I was talking to my friend will.i.am the other day and he said to me: “What you want to be is water. You don’t want to be fire, because it’s ugly and burns out quickly, it can only ever be fire- it can’t be anything else.
If you’re water you can be anything you want, you can be steam, you can be liquid you can be ic. You can’t destroy water because it’s fluid and just chills. You should be water, water lasts forever”.
There’s so many fiery people and it’s hilarious to me when people like that are respected. It’s almost like a shock rider when they say stuff, and there’s this idea that they should be loved because they say whatever it is they want to say.
Saying reckless sh*t, that’s really easy. It doesn’t take self control. It doesn’t involve any poise and I don’t really respect people like that. It’s much harder to keep your mouth shut and focus on your own thing.
That’s something that I respect and think more people should respect too far more than they already do. I don’t really take too much to what she says. She just says it to be shocking.
Sam: In a year’s time, what career achievements would you like to have under your belt?
Iggy: In a year’s time I would love to have my album out. I’d love for it to be a success and have it become something people have heard of and really anticipate. That’s my hope.
I hope I feel good about it by the time I put it out.
Whatever the result of it is.
Sam: It’s been great talking to you Iggy.