In My Own Words: Tiny Speaks On How Music Could Save Her And T.I.’s Relationship

What the f*** you gon’ do? Stay? Maybe.

Tiny gets honest and goes deep on why she released the song, “What the F*** You Gon’ Do,” how she feels about her husband’s song “Stay“—and why both songs could save her marriage—maybe.

Years ago, I gave up singing. Completely. I just focused on being a wife and a mother.

Let me clarify that. I never stopped singing. I just didn’t share it. I’ve recorded a lot of music and just listened to it in the car or in my basement—never sharing it with anyone.

So because of that, a lot of people are hearing my new song and seeing this video and they’re like—oh that’s right, she sings! I get it, especially with young people who might not know Xscape or who know T.I. and his music and see me as just his wife.

But I’m not just his wife. I’m a singer. I have been for a long time. And it’s a very big part of who I am. I missed being in the studio at first. But with the OMG Girlz, I got a chance to write and produce, and that was how I stayed connected to music.

My new song is a statement. Some people might say, why put your business in a song? It’s because this is my life and my truth and this is how I choose to express it. Isn’t that what we do as entertainers? We go through stuff and we write about it. This is no different.

I wrote this song a year ago. I never planned to put it out. It was therapy for me. At the time, I was really going through a lot. Stuff that the public didn’t know and still doesn’t know. And over the past year, as things have unfolded publicly, people expected me to speak on it. And then I realized, I did speak on all of this, a year ago, in this song. So it made sense to release it.

I’ve had people say, why not just talk to your husband about all this instead of talking to him through a song. Please believe, I’m doing that too! You’re not in our house. You’re not in our conversations. You’re not in our bed at night. This song is not all there is to this relationship.

I know it’s hard to believe, but we did not plan for these songs to come out at the same time. T.I. did not hear my song until the whole world did. He knew nothing about it. I had heard his song and I loved it. But I did not know he was going to release it. So the day I dropped my song, I’m asking to see how it’s doing on iTunes and someone said, it’s doing great—but did you hear T.I.’s new song? And I’m like, what new song?! And it turns out to be “Stay”.

At first I was disappointed. I didn’t want my song to be overshadowed by his. But then I realized, this is the way it was supposed to happen. This is God saying our songs should be released at the same time. It was meant to be.

T.I.’s song—yeah. I love it. I can’t deny it. I listen to it on repeat. I love that he expressed himself that well. I’ve watched him in the studio and his work ethic is effortless. So to hear him put that energy into something like this… it made me happy. And since we’ve been going through…whatever…to hear that meant a lot to me.

Will our music affect our real-life relationship? I really don’t know. I mean if it does, I hope it’s in a good way. Hopefully, it works out in our favor in the end. All I know is that I’m working on it. We’re working on it.”—As told to Aliya S. King

Aliya S. King’s is the author of two novels and three non-fiction books, including the New York Times Bestseller, Keep The Faith, with recording artist Faith Evans. She had written for VIBE since 1998. Find her at and @aliyasking.