Iggy Azalea Says Road to Rap Stardom Was 'A Ridiculous Dream'
photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images
Some of Iggy Azalea's high school classmates in Australia might be surprised that her rapping has led her to the top of the U.S. charts. Iggy's songs "Fancy" with Charli XCX and "Problem" with Ariana Grande are currently No. 1 and No. 2 in this country, respectively. (The only other act to score the top two chart spots with their first hits? The Beatles.) Not bad for a girl who dropped out of high school to compete in a field where many doubted she could find success.
When the star born Amethyst Amelia Kelly told her friends she was quitting school at age 16 to become a rapper, many scoffed, and told her that she would be back. "People definitely didn't support it," Iggy told Yahoo Music last July. "So me wanting to be a rapper in Australia, the most ridiculous dream you could dream wasn't exactly received well. But once I got to America, it got a lot more easy."
When Iggy moved to the U.S., she first lived in Miami before moving to Houston and Atlanta. She recorded mixtapes, found work with Wilhelmina Models, and linked up with Atlanta-based hip-hop superstar T.I. Iggy found more acceptance in the States, and felt welcomed and embraced for her interest in learning more about hip-hop culture. "Once I got here, the ball kinda rolled," she said.
Meeting T.I. was a major turning point in Iggy's career. Teamed with T.I.'s Grand Hustle Records, she released the EP Glory, and later that year was featured on XXL magazine's heralded "Freshman" cover with other hotly tipped up-and-comers, Macklemore, Future, and French Montana.
"T.I., he gives me a lot of advice, but it's more personal advice," Iggy explained. "Career moves and musically what I'm doing, he doesn't step on my toes too much. I'll usually call him and [say], 'Hey, Tip, I'm doing this. What the hey?' And he'll say, 'That's great. Now when you do it. Don't forget…' That's when the advice comes."