The student news site of Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology


The student news site of Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology


The student news site of Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology


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Drake and SZA: just co-workers or more?

A timeline of Drake and SZA’s sly references to one another through their music
Drake and SZA pose together during SZA’s “CTRL” album tour in 2017.

From strangers to co-workers, lovers to enemies, the two popular artists, Drake and SZA, share a long, tense history. Even so, the two frequently collaborate with each other – the most recent example being SZA’s recent feature on Drake’s newest album release, “For All The Dogs.” The album tallied about 500 million song streams in its first week, featuring popular artists such as J. Cole and Yeat. 

Drake and SZA’s history dates back to 2008 when they had briefly been together. Rumors circulated about the two’s history until Drake confirmed a previous relationship in 21 Savage’s “Mr. Right Now,” where mentions that he “used to date SZA back in ‘08.” Although they had not confirmed they dated until 2020, the two artists released songs across multiple albums dissing each other with witty lyrics and messages.

An obvious connection between the two talented artists was in Drake’s “Controlla” and SZA’s “Normal Girl.” “Controlla,” a song from Drake’s 2016 album, includes the line, “You like it when I get aggressive.” Not long after, SZA sings the same lyric in “Normal Girl,” from her 2017 album “CTRL.” Moreover, the similarity between the song name “Controlla” and the album name “CTRL” is somewhat uncanny. 

The similarities don’t end there, although they are not as explicit. The two artists seem to engage in a back-and-forth conversation between their songs, as demonstrated between Drake’s “Come and See Me,” and SZA’s “2 AM.” “Come and See Me,” released in 2016, is a song about a man who calls a woman late at night. In “2 AM,” SZA’s single featured on her 2022 deluxe album of “CTRL,” shifts the perspective from the man to the woman and her thoughts about their ‘situationship.’ 

Furthermore, on SZA’s 2023 album, “SOS,” there is a track called “Seek and Destroy,” a song about SZA leaving a previous toxic relationship. In response, Drake shortly released “Search & Rescue,” a song where Drake mentions he is now ready to “settle-down” in a relationship. The two songs have names that follow the same format, and the songs both pertain to relationship issues. 

Intuitive fans have also made comparisons not just between the lyrics of the two artists, but also the samples used in their songs. The intro song to SZA’s latest album, SOS, apparently uses the same sample Drake used in the second half of his hit song “Champagne Poetry,” from “Certified Lover Boy,” released a year prior to “SOS.” 

Yet, the two seem to have put this all behind them by releasing a song together, titled “Slime You Out.” The artists sing about toxic exes together, despite likely being each other’s “toxic ex.” 

Fans of the two artists likely sensed tension between the two artists, with all these subliminal messages in songs produced by each artist. Yet, the unique singing styles of the two artists coupled together shaped the lead single of Drake’s album, “Slime You Out.” The two clearly work well together, as the song debuted at number one on the Billboard Hot 100. 

At the end of the day, we as fans cannot make conclusions about artists’ personal lives. From what we can tell, Drake and SZA are talented artists who do great when they collaborate, but maybe not so great when they are together

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