Los Angeles, CA – Could you imagine your 2003 without Beyoncé’s then biggest hit of her career? According to Sisterhood of Hip Hop star and Brooklyn MC Siya, that was almost a possibility.
“I had that muthafucking Beyoncé ‘Crazy In Love’ beat before Beyoncé had it. I spit a freestyle to it in a meeting, maybe at Sony or some shit,” Siya recalled during her recent #DXLive segment. “They fell in love with me. They were like, ‘Alright this is it. Can we put you in a dress? Can you rap about boys?”
Record labels testing out different beats for their artists is a common practice used to find the best fit for a potential radio smash. “Crazy in Love” proved to be a major key for both Bey and her future husband Jay Z, as it went on to become one of the biggest-selling singles of all time and officially launched her still thriving megastar career.
Having been in the industry since she was 12-years-old and being one of the first openly LGBT rappers, Siya has been faced with that stigma for the better part of two decades. “Coming into the industry [and] being that age a lot of people felt like ‘ok you’re young [so] we’re going to mold you the way we want you to look, what to say, and how to talk,” according to Siya. “I was never into that. I done dealt with every record label you can think of that has been like, ‘Yo we love you! Can you just put on a dress?’”
Crazy Successful: “Crazy in Love” won Best R&B Song and Best Rap/Sung Collaboration at the 46th Grammy Awards.
Siya also breaks down just how beats are passed around the industry from artist to artist. “Two tapes ago I had a track called ‘Dollar and a Dream’ and it ended up on French’s album [“We Go Where Ever We Want” with Ne-Yo & Raekwon].” The Brooklyn veteran keeps a positive outlook on the beat carousel, “I’m not even tripping. If I had it first or whoever had it first; It’s about putting content out for the fans.”
Siya’s latest album, SIYAvsSIYA debuted at #11 on the iTunes charts on the same day that J. Cole, Post Malone, Tech N9ne, and Ab-Soul all dropped albums. In an adjacent interview with HipHopDX, she recently broke down the reasoning for her five-track Valentine’s Day EP titled Commitment, which is due out on February 10.
“I feel like Valentine’s Day is such an overrated thing because it’s really about the gift of giving and really not about love,” Siya said. “I guess I’m trying to bring back some type of feeling that excites people again when it comes to love. There aren’t those type of records out there and if it is, it’s just not being done in the right way,” she explained.