M.I.A. and Zayn Malik
8.9.2016

M.I.A. Reveals Zayn Collaboration ‘Freedun’

M.I.A. has enlisted Zayn for what could very well be her final album. Their collaboration “Freedun” is now set to appear on the Sri Lankan artist’s upcoming fifth LP, AIM.

The news was revealed by M.I.A. during an interview with EW, where she said the innovative collaboration was done while she was in India through the wonders of technology. “We just basically did it while I was here, because I’ve been here for a week-and-a-half,” she said. “We’ve just been going back and forth on, you know, WhatsApp.”

This will be her first collaboration with the former One Direction singer, but she did consider writing material for his debut solo album, Mind of Mine. “We have the same publishers and they wanted me to demo some songs for Zayn,” she added. “Before I started writing properly my own stuff [for AIM], I was thinking maybe I’ll write for other people instead. I really wanted to write a song for Zayn….We had a couple people in common. And that’s how it came about. I didn’t really approach him for my own record until later on. First, I thought I wanted to try writing a song for him.”

“Freedun” could mark the end of M.I.A.’s musical career as AIM might be her last musical hurrah. “I want to do something else for a bit,” she explained. “I just feel like I need to spend more periods of time somewhere. When you get into music and you get into a cycle of a record, how life goes, is very fast. You don’t get to just live things out and get involved with communities. I want to spend some time in Greece, make a documentary [there]. Something useful for a bit.”

Last month, M.I.A. released “Go Off” and its explosive music video. On Friday, she is set to premiere her new single “Bird Song,” produced by Diplo and Blaqstarr.

AIM, the follow-up to 2013’s Matangi, is due Sept. 9.