SZA’s new album S.O.S. boasts a handful of big-name features, but it was supposed to have even more guest features — had they not ghosted her.
In an interview with Hot 97’s Nessa ahead of the release of her long-awaited sophomore LP, the Top Dawg Entertainment songstress revealed that she hit up other artists about appearing on the project, but they never sent their vocals.
“[Collaborations happen] in the DMs and begging people,” she said. “Sometimes people turn in their verses and sometimes they don’t. A lot of people just like, did not turn in their verses — but I’m grateful for who did.”
SZA admitted that she’s guilty of ignoring feature requests from many of the same artists she reached out to in the past so she “can’t be too mad,” but that doesn’t mean she isn’t still disappointed.
“A lot of these people, I didn’t turn in my verse, so I can’t be too mad,” she added. “But also, at the same token it’s like, ‘Damn, this sucks. I really needed you. I wish you showed up for me.’ But I’m sure they felt the same way for me.”
Despite the no-shows, S.O.S. still has its fair share of star power, with cameos coming from Travis Scott, Don Toliver and Phoebe Bridgers, as well as a posthumous appearance from Ol’ Dirty Bastard.
“I doubted that this was gonna be allowed to be on the album, but it surprisingly was,” SZA told Nessa of her unexpected collaboration with the late Wu-Tang Clan legend. “I talked to his estate. It really just came from a piece of documentary footage. He was freestyling in the background of the footage so I took the audio. It’s cool.”
SZA is especially grateful for being able to extend her creative partnership with Travis Scott, who previously appeared on “Love Galore,” the chart-topping, Grammy-nominated hit from her 2017 debut Ctrl.
“I love Travis and he always shows up for me, and I really appreciate that, that he’s a consistent friend in my life and really believes in me as an artist,” she said. “He’s my gang!”
“Same thing with Don [Toliver] — a genius,” she added of her upcoming collaboration with Travis’ Cactus Jack cohort. “There’s another song with Don that didn’t make this album, but it may be on it at a later time.”
After years of delays, doubts and discordance between SZA and her labels, S.O.S. is finally set to be released on Friday (December 9). The New Jersey native has shared three singles so far — “Good Days,” “I Hate U” and “Shirt” — and performed another song, “Blind,” on SNL earlier this month.
The album serves as the follow-up to the aforementioned Ctrl, which debuted at No. 3 on the Billboard 200 with 60,000 first-week sales while garnering widespread critical acclaim and cementing SZA as a bona fide star.
In June, she released a deluxe edition of the LP featuring seven bonus songs, including a collaboration with Tyler, The Creator, a cover of PARTYNEXTDOOR and Drake’s “Come and See Me” and a solo version of “Love Galore” containing a previously unheard verse.