Lizzo makes waves in music industry

Story by Maya Hodison, Staff Writer

Best known for her hit “Truth Hurts,” which was deemed the #1 song of the summer by Billboard, Lizzo has made waves in the music industry within months. She has been in the rap game for around ten years but has recently sparked national interest.

Melissa Jefferson, known on stage as Lizzo, was born in Detroit and lived there until she and her family moved to Houston at nine years old. She attended the University of Houston where she was in the marching band and studied classical flute performance. Moving to Minneapolis in 2011 allowed her music to really begin to thrive.

Her 2019 MTV Video Music Awards performance was regard as iconic by viewers and critics alike. She performed a medley of her hits “Truth Hurts” and “Good as Hell,” showcasing her talents of singing, rapping, playing the flute, and hyping the crowd. To top off the excitement, the audience seemed to love the energy of her background dancers and the stage backdrop, which included a gigantic butt.

NPR Music hosts a live performance series called Tiny Desk concerts where artists share their music and stories behind their songs in a small, intimate setting. Lizzo was featured in July, and her performance received a record number of audience members for a Tiny Desk concert.

“We are in a time when the younger generations want to uplift each other and Lizzo just wants to be a part of that to make this place better. She is just herself, which I really admire,” junior Monique Diaz said. “Also, I love her music. It is very upbeat and anyone can listen and jam out to it.”

Lizzo’s image promotes inclusivity, confidence, and self-love. Being a plus sized woman, she constantly talks about her long journey of learning to love everything about herself. Through being proud of her body rather than being ashamed of it, she inspires her fans.

“Lizzo’s music is very powerful and sends a deeper message to empower women to really see their inner beauty, and to feel comfortable without a masculine figure in their life,” freshman Sydni Bolewski said.

Though some people have gained interest in this up-and-coming star, others do not see the difference between Lizzo and other main stream artists.

“I think she is overrated because she had one song that got famous and now everyone is talking about her, but for me, I like artists based on the quality of their music and what the words really mean,” sophomore Bri Bodine said. “I think her songs are just not really serious, so I don’t take her seriously. She’s mainstream, if I could describe her.”

Whether or not people actually enjoy listening to her music or not, Lizzo has gained support and admiration for using her platform to spread her message.

“With the controversy of women’s rights and equality, she stands out as she is not afraid to make sure that women are heard. I believe that is why people gravitate toward her,” Bolewski said. “She is trying to spread inner confidence in these women, so they feel like they are queens in their own way, which is something we just need to hear.”