SZA is one of the most popular artists in the world, and some portions of her fanbase are particularly internet savvy. This combination has made the R&B star a target for hackers to illegally obtain and leak her music, either to paying customers or for internet clout. In a new Variety profile, she revealed how leaks hinder her creative process.
“When people leak my songs, they ruin them,” SZA told the magazine. “Then it’s not mine anymore; it’s actually yours. It’s something unfinished that you decided was ready to be shared."
Leaks of her music, sometimes done to force SZA to officially release new songs, have the opposite effect on the artist. "It’s like, ‘Fuck you. Now I’m not releasing it.’ Play your leak, but you’re not gonna bully me into dropping music. I’m now embarrassed by this less-than-correct version that you put out. You’ve sent me into a weird space creatively when you could have just waited for me, but you’re selfish.”
While it's unlikely that SZA's thoughts will stop anyone from actually leaking the music, they may give new context to anyone who listens to the stolen songs. Read the full profile here.