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FLO Effortlessly Honor Old-School R&B With the Help of Missy Elliott on ‘Fly Girl’

The girls of FLO are bringing back the beauty of early aughts R&B. On Thursday, the British trio — Renée Downer, Stella Quaresma, and Jorja Douglas — released their old-school R&B-infused single “Fly Girl,” featuring an iconic verse from Missy Elliott herself.

“‘Fly Girl’ is all about confidence, good vibes and feeling your best. It’s a lively, feel-good song that still incorporates clever lyrics and fire vocals, if we do say so ourselves,” the group said in a statement. “It’s quite literally a perfect fusion of old-school meets modern-day R&B, with a nod to and feature from the original fly girl Missy Elliott herself.”

The song’s intro features a mini reference to Elliott’s “Work It,” while FLO samples the iconic song’s lyrics in the chorus: “If you’re a fly girl, get your nails done/Get a pedicure, get your hair did,” the group sings. “See, you’re tellin’ me I’m pretty, but it’s obvious.”

In her verse, Elliott revisits some of her original “Work It” lyrics as she asks, “Don’t I still look like Halle Berry in the face?” FLO celebrated their star-studded collaboration with Elliott on Twitter, saying that working with Elliott was “a dream come true” for the three of them. “Much love & May your careers continue to flourish through the roof & you all stay together through thick & thin!” Elliott wrote back.

This is FLO’s second release of 2023 after joining Stormzy for a remix of “Hide & Seek.” Last year, they dropped their debut EP The Lead, which featured breakthrough single “Cardboard Box” and single “Immature.” They’re set to head on a North American tour next month.


“As a band, we’re incredibly hard-working and hold ourselves to the highest standard. We never want to do something without giving our all,” Renée told Rolling Stone U.K. over the summer.

Elliott has a long history of collaborating with girl groups. She tapped TLC for Under Construction‘s “Can You Hear Me,” worked on SWV’s “Can We,” and joined the Pussycat Dolls for “Whatchu Think About That.” Most recently, Elliott hopped on Fifth Harmony’s “Not That Kinda Girl” in 2016 and Little Mix’s “How Ya Doin’?” in 2013.

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