Saweetie at Her Core: Rapper, Competitor, and Leader

The rapper gave us the run-down on her new partnership with Champion and her upcoming album, Pretty Bitch Music.

Music and sports have endless parallels. Both require a competitive spirit, drive, raw talent, and love for the spotlight. You can’t be an artist or athlete without the determination to succeed and the grit required in the competitive industries.

“I love sports, I feel like it definitely prepared me for my career,” Saweetie says, sitting in front of a Champion poster set over Zoom, her brown hair and bangs styled perfectly along with her mint green stiletto nails. “It gives you that competitive edge and it prepares you for competitive greatness.”

It’s been a particularly busy Thursday for the rapper. While it feels like most of the country is in spring break mode at the beach, margarita in hand, Saweetie is spending her St. Patrick’s Day debriefing me on her new Champion “Get it Girl” Campaign, her role as their Culture Consultant to mentor collegiate female athletes, and, of course, her upcoming album, Pretty Bitch Music.

Courtesy of Leeor Wild
Courtesy of Leeor Wild

As a lifelong athlete, her relationship with sports started at a young age. She played football at the park and at school, and soon became a year-round athlete. An outside hitter on the volleyball court and a hundred-meter-dash track star, it wasn’t long before she won Female Athlete of the Year in high school in 2011. Although she was prepared for a life as a rapper because of her competitive attitude as a former athlete, she still learned major lessons when starting her musical career that she’ll bring to the table for the twelve athletes she’ll be mentoring in her “Champion Circle.”

“As an athlete, when you make a team, you have a huge franchise that’s preparing you to be a rookie, to an all-star,” she says. “As a musician, you kind of just fend for yourself and figure it out. So I wish that in the future, I hope to not only be a part of empowering women in sports, but women in the industry, you know, teaching them how to build the correct team around them because you are only as strong as your team.”

She stressed the importance of having the right people around you — and hopes to instill this same mindset, as well as the importance of practicing and emulating confidence, in the athletes.

“I always saw myself being the face of a sports apparel brand and the fact that it’s Champion, a brand that I grew up wearing, it feels like it came full circle,” she says. “It’s just an honor and a pleasure because as a former athlete, I know what it feels like to be putting in those countless hours in the gym, games, practice, you name it. So the fact that I’m behind the campaign that’s empowering young women in positions I was once in, it’s an honor to do that.”

Each athlete from the Champion Circle was handpicked from different sports including cheerleading, track, baseball, and volleyball, for the most diverse group possible. As part of the initial campaign, every girl was photographed in their own unique garments from the latest Champion collections to highlight their individual talents.

“Diversity is something that’s super important and the mentorship will kind of just serve as guiding these college athletes throughout their college career to ensure that they’re getting everything that they need, because you have to think, as young women balancing school and sports, it can be difficult.”

Courtesy of Hannah Lux Davis
Courtesy of Hannah Lux Davis

Balancing life with work with is something Saweetie herself is still working on. Known for “feel-good music,” her self-described genre — citing “Best Friend,” “My Type,” “Tap In,” and “Back to the Streets” as examples— she’s ready to divulge more dimensions of herself with Pretty Bitch Music.

“I think that it’s time to let my fans know about my childhood, the inner workings of me as a woman, as a human and just showing a different side of myself,” she said.

Saweetie is especially excited for one of her upcoming singles, “Pretty Girl Meditation.” Inspired by her recent discovery of meditation late last year, she admitted that she used to be resistant to it because she didn’t know much about it. Now, she couldn’t be more adamant that meditation is something we all need to practice.

“What I learned is meditation is actually a case study,” she says. “I’d like to teach my fans that they can meditate in their own way. And there’s no one specific way they have to meditate because meditation is important for clarity, for alignment, and we all need that in our busy work schedules.”

Apart from meditation, Saweetie is a total self-care stan. She enjoys taking baths, laying around the flowers in her house’s garden, getting her hair done, watching videos to learn about new topics, eating salads, you name it.

“I’ll just look good and just stay home because I like to look good for myself,” she said. “It’s all about just filling your cup back up, because when you’re constantly pouring out to work, to other people, giving your energy away, it can drain you. So it’s important for us to nourish ourselves as women because we’re innately caregivers and we need to care for ourselves.”

Courtesy of Hannah Lux Davis
Courtesy of Leeor Wild

Although we’ll be seeing a deeper side of the California-born rapper in her upcoming album — make no mistake, her songs will still have the same fierce voice we all know and love — as she explained when asked to describe the genre of her album.

“Saweetie,” she said of the genre. A fan of music styles across the board, Saweetie is superior at her cross-over genre mixing, pulling from rap, pop, and R&B and can’t wait to explore it deeper in Pretty Bitch Music.

As for collaborations, we’ll have to wait and see. So far, she’s released a few singles with artist features, such as “Best Friend” featuring Doja Cat and “Closer” featuring H.E.R., but she’s still determining who else she wants to work with. Regardless, she’s excited to co-produce, as she disclosed that the resulting songs really feel like “her personality on a record.”

“Honestly, collaborating is very sacred to me,” she says. “Until I’m done with my album, then I’ll see who can add more soul to the songs. I’m not that type of person where I collaborate with someone just ‘cause they’re hot. If I’m making art, I wanna collaborate with somebody who’s going to add more spirit to the song that I’m in love with.”

As for when we can expect Pretty Bitch Music, the songs could come any day now. “I’m just gonna be dropping songs here and there. So that’s a timeline right there, girl,” she said.

Saweetie and the many hats she wears — rapper, songwriter, producer, competitor, and mentor — are here to stay. The rapper is changing the game (pun intended) for young athletes and is a role model that kids involved in any industry can and should look up to. We can’t wait to see what Saweetie adds to her multi-hyphenated career next.

Check out the Champion campaign video featuring Saweetie below.

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