Grand Hustle’s Iggy Azalea discusses her love for both mentor T.I. and close pal Nas and what key lessons she has taken from them in the new issue of Complex.
An excerpt from Iggy’s cover feature shows the Australian emcee bigging up Nasty Nas for helping her realize hip-hop is bigger than stricly rap bars.
“Nas encourages me to take risks. He’s made me be less afraid and even more unapologetic. Even with “Bounce,” I was like, “It’s a pop record. I don’t know.” He was like, “Just fucking do it. It’s something different. It’s one song, what’s the big deal?” I couldn’t believe Nas was telling me to do a hip-pop record. The thing that I learned from both of them is to be unaffected by everything.” (Complex)
The 23-year-old also dishes on how much T.I. has had her back through rough times.
“There were a lot of sad days in that studio, and T.I. would be like, “Look, shawty…” and give me a spiel about how he went to prison and if something’s not going to send you to prison or kill you, you shouldn’t worry about it. Career-wise, I used to compete with certain other people I had issues with. He sat me down and said, “You run your own race, like you’re a horse and you have blinders on. Don’t look at who’s on either side of you or who’s coming up.” That’s helped me a lot because even last year a lot of people would have chalked me up and said I was a wrap. I sometimes feel like I’m the turtle and other people are the hare. They win their race and finish or burn out and I just slowly run my own race. It works out in the end.” (Complex)
Earlier this summer, Iggy denied being romantically linked to Nas.
“I heard I was dating Nas, I heard I was dating T.I., I ‘was’ dating T.I. and I was dating Kanye West as well,” Iggy sarcastically said in an interview. “And I posted a photo shopped picture of Drake so I was dating him too. The funny thing is I don’t use any of their production or features. I’m good. … No, I’m not dating Nas. That picture is from when we were on tour together and we were at an afterparty where we both got paid to be at and took a picture together. He is a good friend to me — he’s a really smart guy and he’s taken a lot of risks in his career that people think are insane. I had a lot to talk about with him because I take a lot of risks as well.” (“The Breakfast Club”)
In January, Azalea talked about not always taking T.I.’s advice in regard to her music.
“Well he’s actually not anymore,” Iggy said when asked if Tip is executive producing the LP. “He was going to be, but originally when I was making The New Classic, all the records that I had on Glory were supposed to be for The New Classic, and he executive produced what ended up being Glory. But as I was making it, I felt like, ‘This isn’t The New Classic; this is something else. It’s not the right sound.’ Not that it sounded bad, but it wasn’t what The New Classic is in my head and he executive produced that and it went good, it was an experience, but after, he said and I said it’s better if I just make my own music away because sometimes being around him, it influences the music I make to be a bit too much of a different sound…[it’s] not because I don’t love, because I love him.” (16 Bars TV)