This evening sees her honored with the Rule Breaker award at the Billboard Women Of The Year ceremony in New York City.
Ahead of the event, the 28-year-old sat down for a candid interview with industry publication to discuss her journey.
Waxing all sorts of honest, she shared her learned lessons from “that” Coachella performance and revealed how she was initially being honed to be the next Jennifer Hudson. She also relayed her take on Beyonce.
Peep excerpts below…
You were on your own for years before getting signed. Was that difficult?
The first [label] said, “She’s too green. I don’t know why she’s here. Maybe she could be Jennifer Hudson.” That was weird and painful. Nobody saw me the way I saw myself, but I was OK with that. I’m like, “This makes sense to me.”
What was it like playing the main stage at Coachella?
Terrifying! But it was a learning experience: You need to drink more water, you need to stop smoking Backwoods [blunts], you need to hit the treadmill for 30 minutes before every show. That was probably the first time my voice and my nerves slapped me at the same time, like, “B*tch, you need to move and learn something!”
You performed on the same stage as Beyoncé. Did you see her set?
I did. That sh*t looked televised, and I was there in person! I was crying by the time I saw her. She was the first person to ever take a real chance on me, letting me just write and waste her time for a month. [SZA co-wrote the 2014 Nicki Minaj – Beyoncé collaboration “Feeling Myself.”] I’ve said some weird sh*t around Beyoncé, and she never judged me.
As reported, SZA is hard at work on the follow-up to her Grammy nominated debut ‘CTRL.’