I was so excited when Lizzo’s new single “Rumors” was released on Aug. 13. It marked a “New Era Bitch,” as she called it on her Instagram teaser post. The single gave me everything I love about Lizzo while also featuring Cardi B. What more could you ask for?
It doesn’t matter what I think because as Lizzo said in an Aug. 15 Instagram Live:
“I’m not making music for white people, I’m not making music for anybody. I’m a Black woman making music. I make Black music, period. I’m not serving anyone but myself. Everyone is invited to a Lizzo show, to a Lizzo song, to this good energy. Everyone’s invited.”
The song is upbeat with perfectly mixed funk and pop sounds and, of course, Lizzo’s powerhouse vocals. The lyrics were thoughtful yet fun, calling out all her haters. Some of my favorite lines are “Give 'em somethin' to talk about/ Sick of rumors” and Cardi’s “Last time I got freaky, the FCC sued me,” which references complaints some had after her “WAP” performance on the Grammys, were only a small few of my favorite.
Because of its “forget-the-haters” message, it was very disappointing that Lizzo had to call out people’s racist and fatphobic comments days after its release. Lizzo spoke on TikTok and Instagram Live about people comparing her to the racist and fatphobic “Mammy” caricature.
“If you don’t like my music, cool. If you don’t like ‘Rumors,’ cool. But a lot of people don’t like me for the way I look,” she said on the livestream. “What I won't accept is you all doing this to Black women over and over and over again, especially us big Black girls. When we don't fit into the box that you want to put us in, you just unleash hatred onto us.”
That’s exactly what the message of her song is against, so if you listened to the song and then spewed hate and racism against her, you need to listen better.
Take time to watch the whole video.
Lizzo said in the livestream she worked overtime in the studio, rehearsals and writing music for this song. It’s clear she put so much of herself into this release and she thanked fans and anyone who listened to the song.
“There are so many people who love ‘Rumors,’” she said. “We worked hard and I know that this hard work has paid off.”
And yes it has. Fans have skyrocketed the song on the charts through streaming. It debuted as number one on the Hot R&B/Hip-hop charts and, as of Wednesday, it was at number four on the Billboard Top 100. Those are numbers that matter. Those are numbers that say “f--- you” to the haters as loud as the song itself does.
A new album is coming, though an official release date hasn’t been announced, and I cannot wait to hear what more she has to say as well as what new sounds she gives listeners.
Listen to Lizzo. Listen to her messages. Listen to her music.