Like anyone who knows what southern black people actually sound like —or are old enough to remember Charli Baltimore and Diamond from Crime Mob— I found Iggy Azalea grating to the nerves. She has a few catchy songs (and I do mean few), but for the most part, she is a drag queen who ad libs. There are many times where I wonder if I should call INS and have her deported back to Australia, hoping she might be forced learn how to rap in her native tongue.
Regardless of how I feel about her, though, I cannot pretend she is not successful. Yes, you can be aware of the factors that play into her success, but when it comes to certain accolades she receives – a Billboard Music Award, in a recent instance – some fights aren’t worth fighting. Some have chosen to fight on anyway, notably in the form of a petition that calls on the Aussie performer to be stripped of her Billboard Music Award for “Top Rap Song.”
The logic is based on “Fancy” being released before the eligibility time period for this year’s awards. By criteria listed on Billboard’s own site, the eligibility period was from March 10, 2014 through March 8, 2015. Iggy’s massive hit was released in February 2014. The petition, which has since garnered nearly 20,000 signatures, calls on Iggy to forfeit her award to Nicki Minaj for “Anaconda.”
It has since prompted an official response from Billboard:
Billboard Music Awards are based on key fan interactions with music, including album and digital singles sales, radio airplay, streaming, touring and social interactions on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Spotify and other popular online destinations for music. These measurements are tracked year-round by Billboard and its data partners, including Nielsen Music and Next Big Sound. “Fancy” went to No. 1 on the Hot 100 in June.
They are much more articulate than me, because my response would’ve been, “If y’all don’t go and get the hell on.” A lot of folks cannot stand the fact that Iggy Azalea gets any awards, much less ones in the rap category. I myself I have booed, hissed, and winced at this, but there’s something to keep in mind: many award shows are as calculated and choreographed as Iggy Azalea.
Is “Fancy” the best rap song? Hardly, and somewhere DJ Mustard is still pissed that his entire production style was jacked to create this track. But was it the best performing song of 2014? Go ahead and frown before you nod in agreement. I try not to diminish any form of protest, but I do advise people to know when to hold ‘em, and know when to fold ‘em.
This reminds me of another online petition launched in 2002 against “Soul Train” over Ashanti being announced as the recipient of the Lady of Soul entertainer of the year award at the Soul Train Lady of Soul Awards. That petition managed to collect some 20,000 responses, which also compelled the show producers to offer a public response. As it is now, the petition’s author felt someone was more worthy of such an accolade. Ashanti got the award anyway and now she ass-scoots across daytime TV stages.
Iggy will only be so lucky to stick around a decade later. Whether or not she does, though, is moot. She had one massive song and semantics aside, got what she had coming. For those who question her talent, longevity, signs of ignorance, or overall presence, fret not: She’ll get what she has coming.