Let me tell you a story.
There were once these four sweet-looking, kinda daggy guys who played a bit of music together. They wrote a couple of tunes, which they cobbled together into an album in 1964 and then?
Within days, I Wanna Hold Your Hand and She Loves You
held the number one and two spots on the US Billboard Charts. The Beatles were the first artists to ever achieve this particular feat with their first album.
And after sharing that record only with a lucky few over the past 50 years, The Beatles’ achievement has been equaled once more by a blonde 23-year-old rapper from Mullumbimby, New South Wales.
By now, you’ve probably caught yourself singing along to her huge smash hit Fancy, but we suspect that like us – not many of you know a lot about Iggy Azalea.
Having bailed on Australia in her teens for the not-so-bright lights of Miami, Iggy Azalea’s fame has mostly existed only within the hip-hop scene and amongst the tail end of Gen Y. It’s only now that she’s flicking away international music records like burnt pieces of movie popcorn, that the rest of us are catching up.
Also, we Australians love a little parochialism and when one of our own is beating the yanks? Well, we’re going to step right up and claim her achievements for the nation. But before we all start chanting Aussie! Aussie! Aussie! in unison, let’s take a moment to get to know Iggy, shall we?
1. Who is Iggy Azalea?
She is a 23-year-old rapper who grew up in Mullumbimby, New South Wales. Born Amethyst Amelia Kelly, she left Australia at the age of 16 and moved to Miami, Florida. From there, she released a mixtape, titled ‘Ignorant Art’, and has just released her debut album, titled ‘The New Classic’.
Iggy also holds the title of the first ever non-American female rapper to appear in XXL magazine’s annual “Top 10 Freshman” cover issue in 2012. Not too shabby for a woman from a country town of 3,000 people.
2. Why should I care about her?
Because she is redefining the stereotypes of rappers. Iggy is smart, articulate, and has a kickass-feminist-warrior vibe going on.
She recently had to ban crowd surfing from her concerts after the horrible experience of being physically violated by her own fans.
Talking to New York radio station Hot 97, Iggy explained her reasons for the ban: “Buying my album for $12 doesn’t mean you can finger me…” she said.
“They think I’m real slutty (because of my lyrics) and (they say) ‘I know what she wants’, why would I want a stranger to ever finger me? It’s a violation.”
3. What does her name mean?
The rapper may think her Australian upbringing hasn’t influenced her career, but we beg to differ.
The name ‘Iggy’ was her childhood dog’s name (an AUSTRALIAN dog you guys), and ‘Azalea’ is, in fact, the street she grew up on.
Her birth name is Amethyst. Yep, a name you’d be forgiven for thinking was pop-star-esque-diva-enough but Iggy’s reasoning for the switch to ‘Iggy’ is refreshingly honest.