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Malibu Babie: From Co-Producing For Nicki Minaj & Megan Thee Stallion To Releasing Her Own SIngle “IBTC”

October 13, 2022

Read the full interview on SheenMagazine.com!

Malibu Babie is having one of the best years of her career, having worked with two of hip-hop’s biggest female artists: co-producing Nicki Minaj’s “Super Freaky Girl” along with Megan Thee Stallion’s “Her.” Both records continue to chart and break history, and the fact she gets to work with both superstars is nothing short of a blessing.

But while her talents as a producer and songwriter do not go unnoticed, Malibu Babie is here to step into the limelight as her own recording artist. Following on the heels of her previous release, “GOODTIME,” the California-born, Olympia raised native returns with her newest single titled “IBTC,” which stands for “Itty Bitty Titty Committee.” This is a female empowerment anthem for women all around the world to help them with their insecurities, letting them know they’re not alone and to always prioritize self-love.

Malibu Babie has been enthralled by music since she was 4 years old, partly thanks to her uncle being an amazing pianist. She fondly recalls photos of herself as a toddler reaching up to the piano… but it wasn’t until college when things became serious. Living one block away from Music Row in Nashville, Tennessee, it was through internships where she realized producing and writing could be a career. From then on, the rest was history.

Sheen spoke with Malibu Babie to discuss her name, her background in music, how she landed placements with Nicki Minaj and Megan Thee Stallion, what inspired her new single, beauty go-to’s, and more!

How did you get your name? 

Growing up, I often was compared to Malibu Barbie. I was a dancer and we did a routine to “Barbie Girl” by Aqua when I was 10. We were all different Barbies, so people always called me that. When I was in LA doing all these production sessions, I became known as the Beat Barbie in the studio.

 

We needed to come up with a producer name and my artist project. I wanted to do something that played around Barbie, but didn’t want to say the name Barbie because obviously Nicki is known as Barbie. Also Mattel would definitely sue me. So I wanted to do Malibu Babie, but  spell it so it looked like Barbie. So people would get that affiliation, but also not quite Barbie because I’m doing things a little bit differently. [laughs]

 

Was it hard coming up as a female producer? I feel like that wasn’t a thing back then.

It for sure wasn’t a thing, and it’s starting to become a thing now. We have awesome people now like Nova Wav & WonderGurl, that’s so amazing. It definitely was a little challenging to be taken seriously. You definitely had to come into the sessions and really be on top of your game to prove that you could run in that circle.

 

Was there a turning point when you realized you could do music for a living?

I was taking this elective class at Vanderbilt where I went to school. I was going to go to law school, I was the first person in my family to graduate college. It was a lot of pressure to do something scholastic. I remember taking this class, the teacher was this professional songwriter. You had to write and perform a song, so I did that. She pulled me aside afterwards and said “you have a gift, you have to do this. This would be a disservice to you, you’re so joyful when you do this. This is your purpose.”

 

She helped me get those first Internships and jobs, where I was absorbing it. Once I saw other people really do this and succeed, before I graduated, my gut was: this is what I’m supposed to do. It’s great you have this degree, you’ll always have that. You made your family proud, but now it’s time to go do what you want to do.

 

That’s beautiful, and you still have your degree. 

I still have my degree. I’m super grateful because honestly if I wouldn’t have gone to that school, if I hadn’t been on that dance team, if I hadn’t taken that written elective class, there’s no way I would’ve ended up where I am. It all worked out the way that God and the universe wanted it to.

 

Definitely want to talk about co-producing Nicki Minaj’s “Super Freaky Girl.” How did that happen and what did that mean for you? That’s huge!

It literally means everything! We went into the studio that day with a couple of my good friends and close collaborators. Had the idea that it’d be sick to flip an old iconic song, but make it 2022, fresh, bad bitch energy. We happened to have all those files on hand. The original files from “Super Freak,” which those files are very hard to find.

 

How did you have those? 

I still don’t know. My friend literally had all of them in his folder on his computer, we had to do it. We got together, made the instrumental. Had some rough ideas for what it could be. Nicki heard it and within a day had written the verses and recorded it. It happened lighting fast. I was in shock when I got the call. Wait what? I’ve manifested this, I’ve dreamed this. Every session I go into, I speak out loud: “this would be perfect for Meg, This would be perfect for Nicki.” All my friends knew that so for it to happen, wow.

 

How did it feel to see it go #1?

It’s surreal. Getting the Billboard #1 is one of those elusive, lifetime goals where you feel very blessed to achieve one. For my first of two major placements and to hit that marker out of the gate has been so surreal. It still doesn’t feel real to me. It’s amazing, I’m so grateful. There’s not a lot of female producers who have this. I got to be part of something historic, which was such an honor.

 

You mentioned Meg, how did you end up doing “Her”? I’m excited for you.

Thank you! I love the song, exactly the type of music I hope would get placed. We went in, did 3 to 4 song ideas that day. “Her” was the last one of the day. It was a wild card beat that we made. This was early spring: prior to Beyoncé dropping her album, prior to Drake dipping his toes into house.

We made it thinking it’d be super cool to have Meg do her thing on a track like this, because she hasn’t really done anything in this style. We originally had written a different song over it. Meg heard the track and said “I know what to do with this.” Same thing, she recorded it within a week. She was on her tour bus when she wrote it, got it sent back. Oh my god, she made it into something so iconic.

https://open.spotify.com/embed/track/4HAonty9m9FAvorRkSAiof?utm_source=generator

You released your own single, “Itty Titty Bitty Committee.”

Well, being a member of the “ITBC.” [laughs] I do so many hip hop and pop sessions, all of that body positivity and embracing the curves. I thought it’d be sick if there’s a song for the girls who don’t have the curves. When I was young, I was so self-conscious of it. I grew up within the dance industry where body image is a doozy, to say the least. I really wanted to make a fire, hot girl anthem for 15-year-old me who needed that song. Also have it be fun and swag, not sad girl pop. Something I’d make in the studio for another artist, have that same bad bitch energy.

 

Do you feel like it’s hard to put yourself as a recording artist, after songwriter? 

It’s always whatever breaks you first is what people know you as. Honestly Kanye’s story — not comparing myself to Kanye at all, but I do find some similarity in how he was such a well-known producer. In that documentary, he goes into the labels and they label him as only a producer. I definitely feel that fear almost of only being pigeonholed into “well you’re an amazing producer, just do that.”

 

When in reality, I got signed my first publishing deal because I was doing the artist thing initially. I had these other skills too. What’s cool and how I approach it is at the end of the day, I want my legacy to be known as an all around creative force. I want to be like Missy Elliot, she produced and did her own thing.Anything Pharrell does you know it’s Pharrell and it’s iconic. Anything Kayne does, if it’s a beat or him rapping, it’s Kanye. You can feel the essence in the music. I’m aiming to go on one of those trajectories. It’s a little bit difficult because people see you excelling in one area first. They’re like “that’s working, just do that.” Well, my dreams are actually one thousand times bigger than that.

 

What are your beauty go to’s?

Gotta have a vitamin C serum, obsessed. I’m obsessed with any products by Olay. When it comes to makeup, I’m a lipstick girl. I’m always rocking Urban Decay lipliner, a gloss. Lashes, obsessed with Lilly lashes. Honestly, gotta stay bleaching this. [points to hair] Every 6 weeks, we’re in the salon keeping it fresh.

 

What are you most excited for next? 

I’m very excited to keep working with artists like Meg and Nicki, who I honestly idolize. Help continue putting music out into the worlds that inspire people to feel good about themselves and to have fun. I’m most excited about my project dropping. We have a lot in the works for 2023, I’m excited to really unveil that, start collaborating with some of the people I’ve produced for on the artist side as well. Honestly, just continuing the music takeover.

 

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