MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – She just took a DNA test, and it turns out Lizzo is TIME magazine’s 2019 entertainer of the year.
In an essay published Wednesday, the magazine described the Grammy-nominated artist’s catchy and positive songs as an elixir of self-acceptance in the age of social media.
“At a time when Instagrammers are shilling flat-tummy tea or pretending to eat a giant cheeseburger, Lizzo sells something more radical: the idea that you are already enough,” essayist Samantha Irby wrote.
The 31-year-old rapper, singer and flutist, born Melissa Jefferson, was based the Twin Cities for years, even recording with Prince at Paisley Park.
“The day before and the day after leaving Paisley Park, like, transformed me from just like a musician to an artist. I think I learned how to be an artist,” Lizzo said. “The difference is, you know, I have talent, I can sing, I can rap, I can play an instrument, I can write songs. But an artist creates art with those things.”
Her single “Truth Hurts,” the chorus of which features of a line about the Minnesota Vikings, was recorded back in 2017. This year, the song exploded onto the charts.
Minnesotans watched her go from the Lizzo whose tune “Good as Hell” played on HealthPartners commercials to the Lizzo who was nominated last month for eight Grammy nominations, more than any other artist.
What explains her meteoric rise? The culture has changed, she told TIME.
“There were a lot of things that weren’t popular but existed, like body positivity, which at first was a form of protest for fat bodies and black women and has now become a trendy, commercialized thing,” she said. “Now I’ve seen it reach the mainstream. Suddenly I’m mainstream! How could we have guessed something like this would happen when we’ve never seen anything like this before?”
When Lizzo was last in the Twin Cities, she played two sold-out shows at The Armory in Minneapolis. She recently made headlines for her court-side comments about Minnesota Timberwolves star Karl-Anthony Towns.