A ‘Fantasea’ Come True – The Rise of Azealia Banks

[Image from spin.com]

What do Kanye West, Lady Gaga, and Scissor Sisters have in common? Two words: Azealia Banks.

After gaining attention on the internet for a remix of Lana del Rey’s ‘Blue Jeans’ (and later, M.I.A’s ‘Bad Girls’), up-and-coming rapper Azealia Banks has been blowing up in 2012. Taking cues from artists like M.I.A and Santigold, Banks, who is no stranger to the rap game, has been on her “black girl sh*t” since 2009, when she performed under the moniker ‘Miss Bank$’.   After parting ways with XL Recordings later on that year, she dropped the moniker and took to YouTube to promote her tracks.

In 2011, she released the single ‘212’, which sampled the song ‘Float My Boat’ by Lazy Jay, on her official website as a free download. The song was a critical success, and was used again to promote her EP ‘1991’, which released earlier this year. ‘1991’ was followed by ‘Fantasea’, which released over the summer for free via Banks’ Twitter. The mixtape, called “a first album of sorts” by Banks, boasts collaborations with producers Diplo (M.I.A, Das Racist) and AraabMuzik (Jim Jones, Busta Rhymes).

Since then, Banks has been on a roll. From working with the Scissor Sisters on their song, “Shady Love”, to having her music featured in a Mugler fashion show, to rumors of being featured in both G.O.O.D Music’s and Lady Gaga’s upcoming albums, 2012 has been an amazing year for the Harlem rapper. Even though Banks is has gained a lot of exposure in the past year, she has decided to push back her debut to next year. At the GQ Men of the Year Awards, she said, “I feel like if I was to drop my album before it would have been a little bit blindly. No one would have known who I was.” (x)

Azealia Banks is currently on tour in Europe. Her debut album, “Broke with Expensive Taste”, is set to come out some time in 2013.

Follow Azealia on Twitter, and visit her at her official website.

Listen to: ‘212’ ft. Lazy Jay, ‘Barbie Sh*t’, and ‘Jumanji’

Watch the video for her current single, ‘Van Vogue’:

Listen to the Foster the People remix of Lana del Rey’s ‘Blue Jeans’ ft. Azealia Banks:

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