Learning To Rap
Iggy Azalea: “I was 14 when I started rapping. 2Pac made me want to rap. [Laughs.] Nah, he didn’t make me want to rap, but I was obsessed with it and used to get teased at school. I had this club with my best friend. She was my only friend because she used to get teased too. Eventually, she moved away, which is why ended up being alone again.
“In the club, we would write rude poems about all the other kids. To get in the club, you would have to write a rude poem and we would accept it or we wouldn’t. But we would write the secret poems like, ‘She’s a bitch. I hate her.’ [Laughs.] I kept writing poems privately.
“They were never raps but I was super-obsessed with rap. I would listen, press pause, write the lyrics in a book, and say them back. I would be like, ‘Oh, I killed it. I’m like really the best rapper. I know I can do this shit.’ But I would never tell anyone because I knew everyone would laugh at me and think I was an idiot.
“One day, in a town close to me, they had this thing called OZ Battle. It’s every year on Australia Day, they have big breakdance battles, emcee battles, and stuff. I saw the flyer and I was like, ‘I’m going to go in a rap battle.’
“I caught the bus out there to this rap battle and I lost. I sucked and I got booed. It was the worst. I don’t know why I liked it so much but I was like, ‘This is what I want to do.’ I kept rapping and I kept sucking and I kept getting booed. But I kept going around to festivals.
“I started going to Sydney, because grandma lives there, and went to competitions. I would meet people that liked the same stuff as me. I was like, ‘I want to be a rapper.’ That’s how I started it. From the start I thought I was a professional, even though I wasn’t.
“The first two months of me rapping, I went on the Internet to all the labels in Australia and was like, ‘I’m going to get the addresses and make a demo and send it. I will get a deal.’ I was like, ‘If I don’t get a deal in a year, I’m going to quit rapping. I know I can do this shit in a year.’ I never ended up sending them any demos.
“Now it’s eight years later and I’m still unsigned, but I never gave up because I loved it. I always took it serious and thought I would be the best but I didn’t start recording until about a year later at 15. Living in Australia, I started meeting people that had little set-ups in their houses. Then I went to Miami...”