Big Freedia Marvels At How Her & Beyoncé’s ‘Break My Soul’ Took On ‘The Life That It Did’ (Exclusive)

After commanding you to ‘release the wiggle’ on Beyoncé’s ‘Break My Soul,’  Big Freedia reflects on the song’s vibrancy, blazing her own path as the queen of Bounce and her first pair of Dr. Martens.

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Dr. Martens famously boast that they have “bouncing soles.” So, it makes perfect sense that the beloved iconoclastic shoe brand would team with Big Freedia, the New Orleans superstar dubbed the “Queen of Bounce.” Freedia took part in the Dr. Martens Presents free concert series, rocking Brooklyn Made in November, the latest of concerts pairing Dr. Martens with trailblazing artists. “I think just that,” Freedia tells HollywoodLife when discussing the most “Docs” thing about her. “I created my own lane in hip-hop,” she says.

“When the mainstream wasn’t trying to hear Big Freedia and other queer artists here in New Orleans, we started our own brand,” she tells HL. It was called Sissy Bounce back then, but now it’s just Bounce.” Similarly, Freedia points to Dr. Martens’ “punk rock spirit” as being the most “Big Freedia” aspect. After all, like punk, Freedia has built a legacy and an empire without the help of major labels, independently wealthy parents, or anything like that.

Big Freedia at Brooklyn Made (Courtesy of Dr. Martens)

Diamonds like Big Freedia rarely stay hidden in the rough for long. First catching the ear of the mainstream in the early 2010s, Freedia landed her own Fuse TV series, Big Freedia: Queen of Bounce. In 2016, Beyoncé’s “Formation” sampled some of Freedia’s speech. The two queens would team up during Bey’s Formation tour, and Freedia’s voice commanded you “release the wiggle” on Bey’s latest hit single, “Break My Soul.”

“Beyonce is a wide household name, so of course, being on her record meant millions more fans know who Big Freedia is!” Freedia tells HL when asked if “Break My Soul” has brought in a new wave of fans. Freedia says that those new fans should also check out “Just Be Free,” “3rd Ward Bounce,” and “BDE” to get a better idea of who she is as an artist beyond “Break My Soul.”

(Courtesy of Dr. Martens)

When asked about the song racking up four nominations at the 65th Grammy Awards, Freedia says she was “completely shocked” by the news. “I had heard the song before it came out, and of course, it’s Beyonce, but I had no idea it would take on the life that it did!”

That life might result in a lot of gold, and if Big Freedia is on hand for the Grammys (on Feb. 5 at the arena), she will need a good outfit – and a decent pair of shoes. This is where Dr. Martens comes in. “I remember my first pair – I think I bought in the late 90s,” she tells HL. “But my favorite are the current ones I wear on stage all the time. They are mid-calf, black. They have yellow laces, and Big Freedia patches all up and down. They are fire!”

What would a Dr. Martens x Big Freedia shoe look like? “Mine would be unisex (of course), black leather mid-calf with a gold tongue, Swaroski crystals, and graffiti,” she tells HL. “I think the sole would have the Big Freedia logo so you can see it when you are releasing your wiggle!”

(Courtesy of Dr. Martens)

Freedia is releasing more than just a wiggle in 2023. “I have a new album coming out,” she tells HL, “a new season of my reality TV show, Big Freedia Means Business, on Fuse TV, and I am opening a hotel in New Orleans.”

Plus, if 2023 sees her hypothetical Dr. Martens come to life, it might mean she goes from being the “Queen of Bounce” to the “Queen of Bouncing Soles.” “Thanks for the idea,” she tells HL about this new potential title or changing the shoe’s iconic brand name for this partnership. “I’ll get my publicist on that ASAP.”

For more info about upcoming Dr. Martens Presents shows, including performances by The Linda Lindas, Blushing, Shamir, and more, click here.

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