The Real Meaning Behind Iggy Azalea's Dance Like Nobody's Watching

Iggy Azalea just dropped her "Dance Like Nobody's Watching" collab with Tinashe, which is the first single off the 30-year-old rapper's upcoming third album End of an Era. The Aug. 20, 2020 release is also Azalea's first since announcing that she became a mother to a baby boy, Onyx, back in June. This is the two singers' second song together, after releasing "All Hands On Deck" in 2014, which peaked at No. 5 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart

"Dance Like Nobody's Watching," which the Aussie rapper boasted about on Instagram, shares a positive and empowering message with lyrics like, "I'm all that, bag a chips and the hot sauce." It's sure to get fans dancing like nobody's watching. However, the singers' journey to this song was anything but positive after years of struggle with their record labels hindered their ability to release new music, despite planned tours and promises to fans.

Besides just being an empowering anthem, there seems to be a lot more meaning behind "Dance Like Nobody's Watching." Let's dance in.

Iggy Azalea is bouncing back after years of musical turmoil

You couldn't turn on the radio without hearing Iggy Azalea after the release of her 2014 debut, The New Classic. The "Fancy" singer had a promising career after several songs from the album charted worldwide, so it was surprising when Billboard sources claimed poor ticket sales led to the postponement and then cancellation of her first arena tour. Azalea told Seventeen there was a "creative change of heart."

Fans were again confused when the "Black Widow" songstress never released her sophomore album Digital Distortion, despite dropping four singles (which failed to chart). The project was eventually cut into an EP called Survive the Summer, which had less-than-favorable success. During this time, Azalea moved from Def Jam Records to Island Records, according to Forbes. Reports of a strained relationship with T.I., who served as an advisor on Azalea's first album, led to more speculation about the future of Azalea's bumpy music career.

Then in 2018, Azalea confirmed she was an independent artist and partnered with Empire to oversee the release of new music, according to Variety. "I am my own boss," she told Cosmopolitan. The following year, Azalea finally gave fans a full album with In My Defense, which peaked at No. 50 on the Billboard 200. Amid the unimpressive charting, the rapper tweeted she felt "defeated." "Dance Like Nobody's Watching," then, is Azalea's chance for the epic comeback fans have been hungry for. Furthermore, it's also a promising opportunity for Tinashe.

Tinashe 'always wanted to do more collabs' with female artists

"Dance Like Nobody's Watching" could very well be Tinashe's biggest collab since releasing her independent album Songs For You in December 2019. Like Azalea, Tinashe went through musical hardships to get to where she is today. After her debut album Aquarius premiered at No. 17 on the Billboard 200 Chart, the "2 On" singer had a rocky relationship with RCA, who had a different vision for her music. In 2019, Tinashe ended her partnership with RCA and became an independent artist once again. "I just needed to free myself from everything. I felt like my career was coasting," Tinashe told Billboard in November 2019.

The "No Drama" singer gushed to fans that she loves her newfound freedom and confidence on Twitter in August 2020. She said, "I always wanted to do more collabs, esp female collabs... (I loveeee working with other Creatives it's so fun)." We'll be patiently waiting to see who she pairs up with next. But for now, "Dance Like Nobody's Watching" is clearly an important song for both women involved, so what does it mean for those listening?

'Dance Like Nobody's Watching' is an upbeat, empowering bop

The song "Dance Like Nobody's Watching" sends a message of self-love and confidence, which is something both Iggy Azalea and Tinashe likely gained through the struggles leading up to this release. In fact, on the day of the song's release on Aug. 20, 2020, Tinashe tweeted how she has grown. "I used to be EXTREMELY self conscious about playing my unreleased music for people, and I'm so glad I've worked on that," she wrote, followed by another that simply read, "Personal growth>>>>>>>."

With lyrics like "No, I don't do it for the boys / No I don't do it for the girls / No I don't do it for the 'gram / I'ma do it, do it for me," and "I'm sexy, no stress 'cause I'm okay," listeners will be reminded to stay confident and to live life for themselves — rather than for anyone else. A lot of things have not gone as planned in 2020, but hopefully this will remind fans of their own worth.