Exclusive: Iggy Azalea Talks Interscope Deal, Jimmy Iovine & More
Exclusive: Iggy Azalea Talks Interscope Deal, Jimmy Iovine & More

'You're the next Tupac!' Interscope's Jimmy Iovine tells Iggy Azalea

"I'm super happy about it," Iggy Azalea tells Billboard.com's The Juice of her newly signed deal with Interscope. The rising female rapper announced her deal today (Jan. 27), via Twitter. "Get used to me + jimmy smashing shit, cause thats the plan," Iggy tweeted. "Interscope, if you were wondering."

The femme rapper caught the eyes and ears of several record labels when her mixtape, "Ignorant Art," hit the net. "It took me a long time [to decide] because I went around to every label. I was like, 'Okay I want to meet your A&R, president, vice president, and marketing [team]. Who would do my marketing?' I wanted to know who'd be working on my project and I wanted to meet them."

"It's a family and it's a long-term commitment," Iggy tells The Juice. "People aren't just asking you to sign for one album. They're asking you to sign for like three or four, sometimes five. That's like a marriage."

Iggy researched every potential label before and after taking meetings. She considered how each one would handle her vision and image. "I think they [labels] have things that they specialize in. Def Jam, I love. I was super close to signing with them. I think they're just the best team. I think they're really passionate about what they do and you can just tell that they're so hungry over there. But then you look at who they've got signed to their label and it kind of makes you be like, 'I don't know. Am I going to be the guinea pig here for this?' I don't know."

Still, she had doubts about signing on the dotted line, questioning the move from indie to major label status. "I started thinking, 'Oh God, am I going to sign to a label? Maybe I won't. And if I don't, what's my plan b?' It was starting to freak me out a little bit," Iggy said. "I've based a lot on what I thought was going to be [on] me signing to a major. And now I was getting into it, I didn't know if that would be the best for this moment in time because I didn't, [still don't] want to short sell myself or find something I'm not happy with."

Jimmy Iovine, chairman of Interscope/Geffen/A&M Records, caught word of Iggy's doubts and assured her that this was indeed the right move for her, "I think once Jimmy saw that I was starting to pull away and be like, 'No, I'll just do my own thing,' he was like, 'What do you want lady?' And I was like, 'Alright, let's cut the bullshit.'"

Interscope holds a hefty artist roster, including music heavyweights Lady Gaga, 50 Cent, LMFAO and more.

Iovine has high hopes for the rapper who's currently working on her debut album, "The New Classic," due June 2012. He even compared Iggy to one of her own idols, 2Pac. "He's crazy. He's like, 'You're the next Tupac!' I'm like you're absolutely insane. But I love it!"

Check back in next week for our full interview with Iggy Azalea.

Additonal reporting by Lauren Savage.

Questions? Comments? Let us know: @billboard

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