Iggy Azalea joins X Factor Australia but rappers need not apply

Iggy Azalea makes her debut on the judging panel of X Factor Australia.
Iggy Azalea makes her debut on the judging panel of X Factor Australia.

Australian rap superstar Iggy Azalea is the latest recruit to join the X Factor Australia judging panel, which returns to our screen this week just days after it premieres in Australia.

We find out what the Fancy singer plans to bring to this year's series.

What type of artists are you hoping to unearth?

I'm not necessarily looking for that ballad voice although it would be nice. I think I just really want someone with an interesting story who is an interesting person. Charismatic, warm and friendly. Somebody that I would want to be friends with and everybody is drawn to. I want to really take the time to notice who is memorable and then also who's talented and can pull it off on stage. But I think sometimes these shows become so much about who can belt it out the most and not enough about personality. I really want to find that person who can still be in people's minds even when the cameras aren't rolling anymore.

Have you seen any rappers?

No, I'm not looking for a rapper. I never really feel like that works in this format. Rap is about song writing and this is about singing and covering other people's songs, so I don't know that this works in this format because you're singing someone else's lyrics and you also don't necessarily have a vocal ability, so what are you showcasing if they're not your lyrics? It kind of gets into murky water, lost in translation.

You're surrounded by men on the judging panel and
 also no doubt a lot of
 the time in the rap/ hip hop world - how 
hard is it to be a strong female in the music industry?

I think it's hard to be a female in the spotlight no matter what you do. Whether you're a musician
 or a public figure and you're female, I think it's tough. There are so many different opinions about what women should or shouldn't do. And you can kind of never really please everybody so it's hard because everyone is judged - even if you're a man - but women get the extra thing with sexuality, beyond whether you can sing the song.

How competitive are you?

I'm extremely competitive. Unhealthily competitive. I can't even play dominoes and have it be for fun, I'm really serious about everything. I think anybody who's pretty successful is really competitive. It's just my nature. I can't fake even a thumb wrestle, it has to be serious. Everything is serious! I really want to win X Factor. Like, bad. Or at least not have all my people kicked out straight away. That would be kind of annoying, if I had no one left early in the show. I hope that doesn't happen.

The X Factor is the big break these artists have been longing for - what do you consider to be your big break into the industry?

My big break was probably when I moved to 
LA from Atlanta. Some people who worked for Interscope records heard my music online, they were like 'why don't you come out to LA and we can help you find different people that might be able to make beats for you and you can come in and write' ... that was the thing that got the ball rolling. Once I made that move to LA, it helped me meet the people that I ended up making my first mix tape with. From that I got a record deal, so I guess that was it. Even though it doesn't seem like a dramatic big break, it was my break because I met the right people and ended up having a career because of that move in 2010.

TUNE IN:
When: Saturday, 7pm
Where: TV3
What: X Factor gets Fancy

- TimeOut

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