Australian rapper Iggy Azalea garnered much attention in the hip hop industry after moving to the United States to pursue her music career. From her first song, she made an imprint.
Iggy Azalea released her first mixtape Ignorant Art in 2011, which featured 9 songs. The main track from the mixtape titled Pu$$y was first released as a YouTube video, leaked by Azalea herself, and went viral. Prior to this, she had released remixes of other songs, but this was her first original song.
Read further to learn of the origins of Azalea’s work, and how her style has progressed.
The release of Ignorant Art
The music videos for Azalea’s first songs Pu$$y and Two Times went viral on YouTube after their 2011 release.
Pu$$y was the first song Azalea leaked on YouTube. It was to be officially released a month later on her debut mixtape Ignorant Art.
The video predominantly features the rapper and her friends licking ice creams in a suggestive manner, shot around various streets in L.A.
Frustrated by waiting for her producers to release her music, Azalea preemptively posted the song to YouTube, where it garnered significant attention.
She recorded the track in Los Angeles, and in the intro she features an excerpt of a conversation from the 1992 film Boomerang.
It was produced by Chordz 3D and Fuego, members of the production team D.R.U.G.S.
Azalea said the song’s success was unexpected. In an interview with KarmaloopTV, she said, “I didn’t contrive to put out ‘Pu$$y’ and think that people would super hate it, or that it would open up these doors, because it’s so out of the box that I just didn’t think that it’d really go like that.”
She had originally uploaded a video of her remix of Gucci Mane’s song Gucci Two Times. The rapper said that the song was inspired by the Gucci Mane remix in an interview.
“The song ‘Pu$$y’ comes from the Gucci Mane Two Times remix that I did on my YouTube page and that was kind of just a joke we would say in the studio … and I was like ‘Someone should put that as a line on their song’, and no one would ever do it.”
Speaking of the song’s content, she said that it was not intended to be received the way it had been. “It’s actually saying “you’re all pussies” … I just did it [the video] because people obviously like vaginas, so I’ll do it there, but it’s so weird to me to see the part two actually be about ‘pussy’.”
Azalea even claimed that she “held back” because she did not think people would “be able to handle” the sexually liberated content she wanted to put out.
American hip hop magazine XXL listed Azalea on their 2012 Freshman List as an emerging artist for the release. The magazine is quoted saying she is “the first female MC to grace the cover on the strength of her track “Pu$$y” and breakthrough mixtape Ignorant Art”.
Although Ignorant Art was the first music that Azalea officially released, her debut studio album titled The New Classic came out three years later in 2014.
This hip hop album fared exceptionally well, reaching the top five in many global charts. From this came her single Fancy, which peaked at number 1 in several worldwide charts including the Billboard Top 100 in the United States, the Canadian Top 100, and the New Zealand Charts.
Azalea has spoken out about the perception people have of her as an overly sexual person due to her first single.
“When people tell me that I have to be sexy, that’s demeaning, not powerful. To a lot of people, a powerful, sexy woman is vulgar. When I first came out, people said, she only raps about her vagina. I’m not a vagina rapper!”