Iggy Azalea Opens Up About Race in Hip Hop

"Murda Bizness" rapper denies that hip hop is too white.

Posted: 05/03/2013 12:27 PM EDT
Iggy Azalea

As an Australian female rapper Iggy Azalea knows a thing or two about being a minority in hip hop, which may point to why she disagrees with Scarface's claims that the music is being whitewashed.

Speaking with Hardknock TV, the Island Def Jam signee responded to questions about the OG's interview with the outlet, when he said that hip hop is run by white male executives, who "dictate what the Black community hears and listen to" and will eventually turn the genre white.

"You can have a million white men that are executives in the building, but that doesn't make a culture a color," Azalea pointed out. "That's because they can sell you whatever they want, but unless you buy it, it doesn't mean anything."

Having recently inked a new record deal, the 22-year-old denied that labels have as much power as some believe. "I think sometimes people get caught up in this thing of record labels dictate things and 'oh no it's white old guys that are putting this out.' Well, it's not white men creating the content and it's not old white men buying the content either. Yes they're the middle men of putting this out, but it's just a bank."

Rather than dividing races, Azalea sees hip hop as a melting pot of different backgrounds. "I think what shapes the culture is who's consuming it, and that's people of all different colors and that's a great thing," she explained. "I think this idea of 'rap should be Black' or 'rap should be this or that' is worrying to me because it's like segregation. Why would you want to segregate cultures and races and things like this?

"If we have something in music that is unifying, that other cultures are drawn to…then it should be a positive thing."

Azalea has had her share of personal racial controversy. After becoming the first woman to make it on XXL magazine's Freshman cover, fellow femcee Azealia Banks took issue with the achievement. Banks slammed the Aussie rhymer for calling herself a "runaway slave master" in an old rhyme, and questioned XXL's decision to 'endorse' a white woman who called herself a 'runaway slave master.'" 

She later apologized for the lyric.


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(Photo: Frank Hoensch/Redferns via Getty Images)

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