10 things you should know about i-D i-Con and Lovebox headliner M.I.A.

Join i-D as we lose ourselves in the music at Lovebox this weekend. This year, everyone from A$AP Rocky to Banks to Rodigan will be blowing the leaves off those Victoria Park trees during the two-day dedication to all things music. We caught up with M...

by i-D Team
17 July 2014, 6:55pm

Film still Daniel Sannwald

On being an artist…
"You can't fake it, you have to live it. I live what I put out. As an artist, that's all you have."

She doesn't feel famous…
"I am very unfamous, though. I don't feel like that when I'm in Tesco's."

She's got a big mouth…
"I am not part of the mainstream. People are always telling me if only I'd shut up I'd be successful."

And she won't shut up…
"That would be to lose my experiences along the journey, which I fought for and didn't want to tell without being completely off-radar." Pop music, she says concisely, is about "bringing these experiences and validating them."

The music biz will kill you…
"You either go mad or you become a drug addict or you become spiritual. I've gone for all three of them. Well, I'm not a drug addict, but I've been branded all of that."

On retiring from music…
"People would say to me, OK, this means you're going to be broke forever, and you're just going to be a fucking loser crack-head and nobody's going to care about your shit."

On her fears…
"Your music's going to be forgotten, and you're going to get rewritten out of history like you're just out of this fucking loop."

On travelling around India…
"My whole catchphrase for that trip was, 'I've seen the American Dream, now I'm going to see the Indian Dream. When I was in Kerala I really noticed that as soon as you transfer an ideology, or even a symbol or a shape from the East to the West, it always transforms when it lands in the West and manifests in a negative way."

People still don't understand her...
"When I transferred my story to the West the only way that it could exist was by people being aggro about it."

She ignores the critics…
"There was a reason that I made Maya and as long as I stuck to it and I instinctively stuck to it, I was right."



Text Paul Flynn
Film stills Daniel Sannwald
Styling Julia Sarr-Jamois

julia sarr-jamois
Daniel Sannwald
Paul Flynn