Remaking a song from the hottest artist in the industry is a dicey proposition. For most emerging artists, it’s a bad move, one that keeps them on the musical periphery. For Dreezy, her rendition of Nicki Minaj and Lil Herb’s “ChiRaq” catapulted her to national prominence because of her fiery delivery, ferocious lyricism and magnetic microphone presence.
“I’m a fan of Nikki Minaj and I like what she did on the original ‘Chiraq’ with Lil Herb,” Dreezy says of the 2014 cut. “But I got the best bars in Chicago so it was only right for me to remix it and represent. The day my version of ‘ChiRaq’ came out her boyfriend texted us saying ‘You won’t last a week.’”
Dreezy has more than outlasted that prediction. Today, she’s one of the game’s most promising artists, a lyricist equally adept at delivering mind-blowing punchlines, riveting street-based stories, introspective selections and odes to true love. Her talent is on full display on 2014’s acclaimed Schizo mixtape, as well as her just-released Call It What You Want EP.
Dreezy developed her writing prowess growing up in a number of locations throughout the South Side of Chicago. By the time she was in kindergarten, she started drawing. Soon thereafter, she kept diaries and began crafting her own tales.
In 2013, a friend introduced her to producer D. Brooks Exclusive, the beatsmith whose work with King Louie, Lil Herb and others had him perched as one of the Windy City’s hottest rising sonic architects. “Chicago is known for a hard drill sound and Brooks was the only producer really adding piano melodies and violins, more feeling to his music,” Dreezy says. “And when the sound changes, he knows how to embrace it and make it his own.”
Brooks produced Dreezy’s Schizo mixtape, which was released in February 2014. Her subsequent work on the “ChiRaq” remix led to her appearance on Common’s “Hustle Harder,” a cut from his acclaimed 2014 album, Nobody’s Smiling. The pioneering Chicago rapper appeared on Dreezy’s “No Good,” solidifying their bond.
“I know if I ever need to talk to someone, Common can give me some good, sound advice,” she says. “He has good intentions and doesn’t want anything from me.”
Common isn’t the only prominent artist checking for Dreezy. “A few females reached out when ‘ChiRaq’ took off: Rah Digga, Shawnna, Remy Ma, Tish Hyman and some others,” she says. “I’ve already done collabs with Tink, DeJ Loaf, and Chicago female MCs Sasha Go Hard and Katie Got Bandz. Sasha is like my sister. Our friendship started out from rapping but we’re like sisters now. Katie and I are really good friends, too. We support each other. There’s room for everybody. That’s how it’s supposed to be.”
As Dreezy makes her mark among music industry icons and new artists alike, she remains focused on being counted among the genre’s elite. “My goal is to be legendary,” Dreezy says. “Music is my purpose and I want to set the bar — especially for females — and break all the records that come with it.”