Top 5 Things You Didn't Know About SZA



Top 5 Things You Didn't Know About SZA

VOICE OVER: Lisa Yang WRITTEN BY: Michael Wynands
Script written by Michael Wynands

Sza is going places. She's undoubtably the breakout singer of 2017 and her fame is only rising for here on out. We're taking a look at the Top 5 Facts about Sza you may not have known! We love Sza for her talent but also she doesn't take her style too seriously. She love to dress comfortably instead of trendy. Did you know that she was raised in the Muslim faith? The singer, whose birth name is Solána Imani Rowe, was raised in an orthodox Muslim household by her Muslim father and Christian mother (although she also often attended church with her Mom).

Top 5 Facts About SZA

Time to learn how to pronounce her name, because you’re going to keep hearing it. Welcome to, and today we’ll be counting down the Top 5 Facts About SZA.

For this list, we’re looking at some fascinating details about the life and career of this immensely-talented American R&B singer.

#5: She Was Raised in the Muslim Faith

The singer, whose birth name is Solána Imani Rowe, was raised in an orthodox Muslim household by her Muslim father and Christian mother (although she also often attended church with her Mom). Though she is still a practicing Muslim, and her personal relationship with Islam has evolved over the years (she no longer wears a hijab, for instance), her conservative upbringing was hugely important in shaping her attitudes, tastes and personality. And, in case you were wondering, the stage name she gave herself, SZA, stands for "Sovereign Zig-Zag Allah" or "Savior Zig-Zag Allah".

#4: Her Style is Comfort-Focused, Not Trendy

SZA has gotten a fair amount of attention for her fashion sense - which has been described as everything from “‘90s throwback” to, uh, “man repeller”. As SZA explained in an interview with Coveteur, her style isn’t about trendsetting, but rather, about wearing what she’s comfortable in. Being raised in that conservative household, she wore a lot of modest clothing, and though she can certainly rock a skin-tight number, that style of her youth is clearly still her preference. When she’s looking for inspiration, she turns to film, particularly the wardrobes and color tones of Wes Anderson movies.

#3: She Dislikes Her Own Album

2017’s “Ctrl” has received near-universal critical acclaim, but the singer herself can’t be counted among its fans. The album was years in the making, and at a certain point, the powers-that-be at her label, Top Dawg Entertainment, intervened and essentially forced her to release it. As she explained in an interview with The Guardian: “They just took my hard drive from me.” In all fairness to Top Dawg, she also acknowledged that she “just kept f***ing everything up” and “kept moving shit around”. Regardless, she claims that the version of Ctrl we got was not the one she would have released.

#2: Most of Her Songs Begin as Freestyles

In the same interview with The Guardian, SZA gave fans some insight into her process. Apparently, the vast majority of her songs begin off-the-cuff. Even when in the booth, she says she just tries stuff out, then goes back and evaluates it. Perhaps this is how she wound up working on, by her own estimate, somewhere around 150 or 200 songs! In terms of why she approaches songwriting in this spontaneous way, she said in another interview that she “tried to write songs the traditional way, to write it down, but everything sounded really sh*tty . . when I freestyled, that’s when my truth came out.” There’s no arguing with the results.

#1: CTRL is Actually About Lack of Control

Regardless of whether she liked the finished product or not, SZA certainly put a lot of herself into “Ctrl”. The record covers a wide range of themes like love, betrayal, sexuality and self-consciousness, often explored through deeply personal reflections on past relationships. She did go on record (pun intended) about the most unifying theme of the album: the concept of, or rather the illusion of “control”. As she put it: “CTRL is about loss and the realization that nobody has control. I don’t have control, you don’t, Trump doesn’t have control—it doesn’t work that way. Everything is a free, spinning, and connected piece of world.” Wise words from the young star.