Drake and SZA Collaboration ‘Slime You Out’ Uses First Draft Vocals

The SZA verse we hear on “Slime You Out,” her first-ever collaboration with Drake from his eighth studio album For All the Dogs, isn’t the one she expected to land on the song. In a recent interview with the WSJ Magazine, the singer revealed that she had actually recorded two separate vocal cuts, but Drake went ahead and used the first one, causing her to feel a little uneasy at how accepting he was of her first try. It wasn’t Drake specifically that stirred up these feelings in her, but her friends and collaborators in general, as she explained: “If you accept my first draft, I won’t trust you.”

“Slime You Out” just happened to be one example of SZA’s recurring distrust. “I just handed in the first draft to Drake, and he’s putting it on his album,” she shared. “I’m scared because I handed in second vocals, and he didn’t use that. And now I’m like, ‘Are you trying to sabotage me?’ I know that’s not true. I literally know that’s not true, but that’s how bad I feel about my first draft. When things come from an effortless space, I almost can’t enjoy it.” Still, the song debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100, joining “Kill Bill” in her collection of chart-toppers.

Even though the second vocal recording was deemed unnecessary for whatever creative vision Drake was aiming to accomplish on the single, SZA got another chance to deliver a different performance on For All the Dogs. The singer also appeared on “Rich Baby Daddy” alongside Sexyy Red, dropping a brief but captivating verse and lending melodic ad-libs to the chorus. SZA hadn’t worked with Drake before now but did briefly date the rapper in 2009, which she recently told Rolling Stone “wasn’t hot and heavy or anything. It was like youth vibes. It was so childish.”

And if the pressure for her appearances on other artists’ songs runs high, the standards SZA sets for her own releases are astronomical. Shortly after the release of her highly-anticipated sophomore album SOS in December 2022, the singer revealed that she was panicked about actually sharing the album with people. It had been five years since her sticky debut album CTRL arrived — and to this day, the album hasn’t left the Billboard 200 albums chart. Needless to say, she was well aware of how high the stakes were.

“It happened probably just a few times, like maybe up until the last week, when I texted [my label] and was like, ‘We don’t have to put this out. We could just pull out and move it to January. We can just let this go,’” SZA told Rolling Stone in December. “And she’s like, ‘You can’t, you’re like, crowning… You can’t push the baby back in.’ I was like, ‘We can push the baby back in. We can!’”


Now that SOS has been out for nearly a full year, SZA is still hyper-critical of her work, but she’s also opened herself up to more scrutiny for the sake of seeing how far she can push her art.

“For all that shit we have coming up, like the [magazine] covers, performing at the Grammys, performing at the Country Music Awards, at the VMAs — things that I would normally say ‘Fuck no’ to because I’m terrified — I’m thinking that I’m going to say yes to because it might change my life,” SZA told Rolling Stone in her Grammy’s Preview Issue cover story. “It’s not even about what I want. That’s what’s scary. It’s about what could happen. You perform at the VMAs, you do excellent, you’re bigger. You perform at the Grammys, you do excellent, you’re bigger. You perform at the Grammys, you win Grammys, you’re extra big. You perform at the Country Music Awards and you’re Black and you do a good job — all of those things, what they mean together, is terrifying.”

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