SZA’s debut album Ctrl was a labor of love. Initially set for release at the end of 2015, Ctrl experienced not one, but two setbacks before it finally dropped on June 9, 2017. Now, all the hard work has paid off because the RIAA revealed on Thursday that the album has officially gone platinum.
Fully aware that you only get one debut album, SZA admits that she was incredibly particular about which songs made the final cut. “I freestyle everything, all the way down,” she told The Guardian. “And I listen back and think, what’s shitty? And if something’s too shitty and I can’t put my finger on it, and I think, wow this sucks to me, then I get way frustrated, and usually scrap the song. I just kept fucking everything up. I just kept moving shit around. I was choosing from 150, 200 songs, so I’m just like, who knows what’s good any more?” SZA says the final product only came about when the record company took her hard drive.
Ctrl was nominated at this year’s Grammys for Best Urban Contemporary Album, and the 27-year-old singer received a Best New Artist nom of her own. Before the album was released, SZA grew incredibly frustrated with her situation with her label Top Dawg Entertainment that she briefly quit, telling TDE co-president Terrence "Punch" Henderson to release the project “if he ever feels like it” in a tweet that has since deleted. All that is now water under the bridge and Punch was one of the first people to congratulate SZA on her latest achievement.
And speaking of albums, SZA told MTV News in December that she made it her 2018 resolution to start working on her next album and “not drag it out.” We'll just have to see about that.