The M.I.A. Giveaway
There is a serious lack of talented femcees in hip hop, so thank goddess for M.I.A., who has always provided thoughtful lyrics featuring political, social, philosophical and cultural references that defy typical pop princess prose. It appears her life experiences had a major influence on her art. Born in London, at six months old she moved to her parents’ native Sri Lanka, followed by Madras, India. Eventually she returned to London, when she was 11 after her school was destroyed in a government raid. Both parents were artistic activists, her father-an engineer, writer and activist, her mother- a seamstress.
Her career began in visual arts, filmmaking and design before breaking out in 2004 with her singles, “Sunshowers” and “Galang” in the UK and Canada. Most Yanks more than likely caught on when “Paper Planes” hit the airwaves non-stop during the height of Slumdog Millionaire‘s and Pineapple Express’ success in 2008, both of which featured the track. This led to her being the first person of Asian descent to be nominated for an Oscar and a Grammy in the same year.
Her musical influences are as varied as her sound, ranging from Dancehall to early Hip hop like Public Enemy, to Punk, Britpop and Electroclash. After breaking out to reach international success, she created her own label N.E.E.T. Recordings, focused on new underground music. Artists on N.E.E.T. include Rye Rye, Blaqstarr, and Sleigh Bells. Her 2010 album /\/\ /\ Y /\ (Maya) was her highest chart-topping album globally. It received mixed critical reviews for being so political and graphic in nature. She kept making waves when she joined Madonna in the Super Bowl XLVI Halftime show, and instead of singing the lyric “shit” in the song, she flicked off the camera. The NFL then sued her and demanded an apology for not being wholesome enough. Her response, “They’re basically [saying] it’s OK for me to promote being sexually exploited as a female, than to display empowerment, female empowerment, through being punk rock. That’s what it boils down to, and I’m being sued for it.”
In 2012, she signed with Jay Z’s Roc Nation and published an autobiography. The next year she released her fourth album Matangi and then proceeded to leave Roc Nation. She also headlined at this year’s Ultra Festival. Check out her recent holographic duet with Janelle Monae below. The two performed in different cities, but joined each other on stage via 3D holograms!
If you want to see her in action for yourself, she’s coming to Stage AE April 28th at 7pm. Tickets start at $29.50 in advance, but TWO of our lucky readers will win a pair of tickets to the show! Just follow the rafflecopter instructions below and keep an eye on your inboxes to see if you won. You’ll only have 24 hours to claim your prize. Good Luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway