“I just had chills going through my body,” NCAA National Champion and Roc Nation artist Flau’Jae Johnson said of the moment Louisiana State University won as her song “Big 4” blasted throughout the American Airlines Center with confetti dancing in the air while The Tigers celebrated a historic win.
When the LSU women’s basketball team devastated No. 2 Iowa in the National Championship 102-85 in April, it marked the first time the women’s basketball team ever won a national championship.
Are you gonna rap or be a athlete if I’m still doing both why you asking meee ??!!4⃣4⃣4⃣4⃣ pic.twitter.com/YuU57AA4mi
— Flaujae 4⃣ (@Flaujae) April 3, 2023
“The fact that I’m being recognized for my music as well as my basketball at the highest level, that was a breathtaking moment for me. Both of my lives crossed over how I wanted it to. It was an amazing feeling,” the young guard told Uproxx over the phone. “It felt like a movie.”
The song and moment magically aligned perfectly. “August of last year I recorded that,” she told me about the making of “Big 4.”
“We was in weight training with my team and we always played music on the aux, and my teammate LaDazhia [Williams] played this song and I couldn’t get it out of my head. I was like, “I’mma use this and I’mma rap on it.’ It just came out the way it came. I kept hearing the beat in my head and I didn’t know what it was. Once I figured out what it was, I asked LaDazhia, I’m like, what song is that? I remixed and then I made it my song.”
The 19-year-old Savannah, Georgia student-rapper-athlete credits consistency for her ability to tap into both talents successfully like a real-life Hannah Montana. “I’m a basketball player doing something that’s never been done before,” she told me.
Daughter of Jason “Camoflauge” Johnson, known for his song “Cut Friends” who passed away before she was born in 2003, Flau’jae is merely carrying the torch. Her drive and passion for basketball and music are unmatched.
“I’ve been playing basketball ever since I could walk. So, I’ve been hooping for a long time,” she said of her beginnings. “At a young age I just loved music. At six or seven, I started freestyling in the car and rapping for my mom. I always had an ear for music. Even when I didn’t really know what I was saying.”
On the court, she wears the number 4, which she revealed holds sentimental meaning. “[James] Murdock, who was a huge basketball player in Savannah, got killed and he used to hang around my father. He’s real known in Savannah and he’s hardest player to wear four,” she explained. “So, I was always four and I wear four for Murdock. Rest in peace to him.”
With so much going on in the city of Savannah, Flau’jae’s focus is something like Obi-Wan Kenobi’s — it cannot be broken.
Her basketball and rap interests are fueled by the same thing: “To want to be great,” the rising talent shared. “Wanting to be good at my craft, wanting to excel, wanting to be the best version of myself. That’s the best part. That’s what fuels everything I do. Just wanting to be the best.”
Being a college student-athlete as a freshman at a school like Louisiana State University on the women’s basketball team comes with all kinds of pressure. Pressure from not only the school but from LSU fans across the globe expecting their favorite team to show up with nothing less than a win. I had to ask her the secret to maintaining a smooth state of flow between basketball practices and going to the studio.
“Just being consistent,” she answered. “When I feel like I’m pushing on everything and I’m doing it the right way and I got a schedule lined up, that’s the best way for me to be successful in both areas. Being consistent in that makes everything on track. Me being able to create music when I’m feeling the best way is when I’m being consistent with basketball, music, working out, going to the studio. And, I’m actually doing my big one.”
Flau’jae’s “Big 4” isn’t the only song that’s catching a lot of attention, she also recently remixed Hot 100 hit “Put It On Da Floor” by fellow The Rap Game alum Latto into her own freestyle titled “Clickbait.”
“She told me that she really liked the remix that I did,” she revealed. “She wanted me to get in the video. Hopefully we can make that happen. Latto shows big love.”
Meanwhile, the video for Latto’s official “Put It On Da Floor Again” remix with Cardi B happens to feature a cameo from her teammate Angel Reese thanks to Cardi’s line “I been ballin’ so damn hard, could’ve went to LSU.” She and Reese also made a special appearance in NLE Choppa’s heartwarming music video for “Champions.”
On top of that, Flau’jae’s business-savvy partnership with Roc Nation is evidence that her formula is working.
“I own everything. I own my masters. I got creative control. That’s what I wanted. A deal where I could be in control and be able to write the narrative of how I wanted to, for my story. They understood the vision of me. A lot of people didn’t understand the vision of me being a rapper and an artist and being in college. Roc Nation understood it. They really seen what I could be in the future. I appreciate them.”
Ahead of Flau’jae’s second year as an LSU basketball player, she plans to unleash a collection of songs for an official EP.
“I got my project Basketball World dropping this summer, ‘Big 4 Anthem,’ my song with 2Rare going to drop after that. The music I got out right now, we got ‘Clickbait’ going stupid right now. I’m super excited, man. Stay tapped in.”