As Iggy Azalea has become hip-hop’s biggest rising star, there has been increasing scrutiny in regard to her appeal. Being a leggy, attractive white woman in a genre dominated by black men has obviously generated much attention and fueled criticism, but Iggy’s mentor and Hustle Gang head, T.I., explained to Big Boy on Power 106 that her look is exactly why he sought to get her signed and guide her career.
“I knew that with the proper planning and execution the sky was the limit for her,” Tip said of the Australian starlet. “She has a killer instinct, kind of like a ‘if you like me or not I’m going to make it, so you can see it now or kick yourself in the a– later’. That’s called star s—, that’s superstar s—. People like me in the business, I guess the gatekeepers or the leaders of the new school, those who accept the responsibility of sighting talent and when we see it it’s our job to recognize it and to package it appropriately and that’s just what we took the time to do correctly.
“She had already put out a couple of records that was doing things on the Internet with views through the roof,” he continued. “She got a look. I sat with her and Travis Scott the same day and this was when I came home the second time, the last time, I’m really trying to rebuild Grand Hustle as a record label and as a entity in the industry. So I’m seeking new talent, surfing the whip, ‘Yo, this is a white chick, OK, get her on the phone man, lets see when we can sit down.”
In 2012, Azalea became affiliated with T.I.’s Grand Hustle Records and she released her hit single, “Fancy,” and her her debut album, The New Classic on Grand Hustle and Island Records.