Album: Single release only (2015)
Charted: 16 29
  • songfacts ®
  • Britney Spears and Iggy Azalea join forces on this electro-hop track to serve up a summer anthem for the ladies. The Australian rhymer told MTV News it was originally intended to be a solo song for the American pop princess, then for her. "You know it was such a journey, that song. I got asked and it was her song. Then she didn't think she would have her album done in time. I rewrote parts of it and it became my song, and I tried to make it all mine and keep it. Then she said, 'No, no, I am going to take it, my album is ready'," Azalea explained to MTV News, "And so I swung it back her way because she's Britney Spears, you have to do that. She gets whatever she wants."

    "In turn, it's kind of really evolved into something that I was just featured on originally, into really a true duet, where I'm on the chorus with her. We go back and forth," she continued. "She has her verses and I have my verse, but it's not just me kind of popping in it. It really is a duet. And I love that. I love a good pop duet where it's equally powerhouse, cool."
  • The song was produced by the Anglo-American trio The Invisible Men, which comprises Jason Pebworth, George Astasio and Jon Shave. The threesome previously co-produced and co-composed a large slice of Azalea's debut album The New Classic, including her US #1 single "Fancy."

    The producers used many of the same techniques on "Pretty Girls" that they used on "Fancy," including a similar electronic bass pattern and the echo effect at the end of an Azalea verse.
  • The four members of British girl group Little Mix co-wrote the song. Jade Thirlwall, Leigh-Anne Pinnock, Perrie Edwards and Jesy Nelson originally penned the tune for their third studio album, but decided the track wasn't right for them. "As we were writing the song, we realized that it sounded more like it should be for somebody else rather than us," the girls told UK radio station Capital FM. "We absolutely think that it's perfect for Britney. She's absolutely smashing it."
  • The song's video was co-directed by Iggy Azalea with Cameron Duddy ("Sail," "Uptown Funk"). In an interview with USA Today, the Australian rapper spoke about working with Britney Spears on the clip. "I didn't dance! She wanted me to. Since I was co-directing the video, the way I explained it was, it would be kind of obnoxious for me to direct a video and give myself a dance break as well," Azalea said.

    "I don't know if it necessarily fits my identity, but I think Britney's identity is really embedded in being a dancer, and that's something she really wanted to do as well," she added. "So there's a lot of dancing in the video, but I wouldn't say it's necessarily centered around that."

    Iggy Azalea went on to explain that she took inspiration from '80s model and actress Geena Davis. "She's just like the ultimate '80s pin-up hot, cool type of girl, so I told Britney to check her out, and she was like, 'Yes, I love Geena Davis!' So we based our characters on a lot of stuff like that, like Geena Davis and characters she played in a lot of her movies at that time period."

    A specific Geena Davis movie that influenced the clip is Earth Girls Are Easy, starring Davis as an earthling who has an alien encounter.
  • Another musical element that was lifted from "Fancy" is the military-style male "hey" backup vocals throughout the song. After "Fancy," those "hey"s started showing up in many popular songs, including "Don't Tell 'Em" by Jeremih, "Anaconda" by Nicki Minaj and "Animals" by Maroon 5.
  • This song was clearly constructed with marketing in mind, as the names of both artists are mentioned in the first 20 seconds, leaving no doubt as to the performers. Azalea works her name into most of her songs anyway, and Spears has also been known to announce her presence - a good example is her "It's Britney, bitch" declaration at the beginning of "Gimme More."
  • Britney Spears revealed on Extra why she wanted to work with Iggy Azalea. "I saw her song on TV and I was like a kid in a candy store," she explained. "I was like, 'I love Iggy, I love that video, I want to work with her,' and it was really weird, because a week after that her manager was like, 'She's a huge fan of yours.' I was like, 'Let's do something together,' so it worked out."
  • The pair first hooked up when Azalea randomly spotted Spears at a Toys "R" Us store. The Australian rapper explained to the Associated Press: "She lives right down the street from me. Since I've met her now we keep bumping into each other in the street."

    "I love Britney," she added. "She's super sweet and I just want to hang out with her all the time."
  • The earrings Spears wears in the video are identical to a pair Katy Perry wears in her video for "Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)." Spears didn't know this when she picked them out.
  • The song only achieved moderate success, reaching the Top 20 in the United Kingdom and Canada and the Top 30 in the United States, France and Australia. Azalea blamed Spears for the sluggish sales, saying it was difficult to send a song up the charts without additional promotional and television performances.
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