See It First: SZA Performs With Kendrick Lamar and Mac Miller - Rolling Stone
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See It First: SZA Performs With Kendrick Lamar and Mac Miller

New Jersey-bred SZA was raised on a healthy music diet of Wu-Tang Clan and jazz, hence her stage name is fashioned after the Wu frontman RZA. Since being recruited to be the first lady of Kendrick Lamar’s Top Dawg Entertainment, the artist born Solana Rowe has generated a buzz with her EPs, See.SZA.Run, S, and Z, the latter released last April.

In May, TDE celebrated Z with a live event at the Red Bull Studios LA where SZA performed the entire set, bringing two special guests on stage with her, K. Dot and Mac Miller.

Like everyone in the house that night, Yahoo Music was mesmerized, watching SZA bring her songs to life through her carefree presence so welcoming that she invited the audience to make themselves at home and sit on the floor if they wanted. Yahoo Music is privileged to premiere two songs from the show, “Babylon” featuring Kendrick, and “U R” featuring Mac on guitar.

Before taking the stage, she spoke to Yahoo Music, explaining her disposition. “I want people to just feel connected like they know me and feel that I’m not very different,” she said.

SZA doesn’t buy into the superficial Hollywood exterior. “I just feel there’s this weird misconception that you have to be really shiny; that you have to be super shiny, and super everything all time.”

But being in the limelight and sharing her art with the public has been therapeutic, helping her overcome poor self-image. “I’m very pessimistic by nature,” she said. “I love adding things to create my self-loathing, but when people show you that they appreciate you, it kinda makes all of your own self-loathing null and void. It forces you into a space of positivity, good energy, and light. I think it’s healed me.”

Considering the joy her music brings to her fans, it’s only fair that they return the favor.

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