In a novel interview setting, New Jersey native SZA aka Solána Imani Rowe and Genius editor Rob Markman visited Brooklyn horse stable Gallop NYC, where they did a bit of horseback riding and got into the process behind SZA’s new album CTRL, among other topics.
On why she chose the name CTRL for the album, SZA explained, “I have no control, there is no such thing as control. I’m chasing control. I’m craving control. I’m losing control. It’s a culmination of all these things, of this word, of this concept, that’s just run my life for so long, that’s just been very obsessive. I think even with this album getting lost and not knowing that I took wild long to make it, is me being lost, trying to gain control over my mind. And how can I hone in on this? How does this make me a better writer? Can I become a better writer? Like, no, don’t put out an album until you’re a better writer. And the truth is, sometimes you just have to let go.”
SZA also discussed giving the single “Consideration” to Rihanna, the first single on her Anti album, released in January 2016. “That song was on my album, I wrote the whole song, I just gave it to her later on. I love her, I loved that she loved it, I worked hard as shit on that song,” said SZA.
She added that as she loves Rihanna, it wasn’t easy to give up the song, “I love Rihanna. I wasn’t prepared to give that. It was more so a lesson in letting go. A lot more people heard my words and my voice than they ever would, whether they know it’s my song or doesn’t matter. It’s my thoughts, my energy in the world, and I’m thankful for that,” she explained.
The video includes pop ups, one of which tells us SZA was a gymnast for 13 years and danced in the American Dance Theater and the American Ballet (a little explanation as to how she pops those splits with ease!)
Check out the interview below plus some images shot by Juan Veloz.