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MIA — Paper Planes

"I wanted to kill the most amazing person on the world... then I realised suicide was a crime."
Full name: Mathangi Arulpragasam
DOB: July 18, 1975
Place of birth: Hounslow, London, England
Occupation: Singer-songwriter

MIA facts

  • MIA moved to Sri Lanka at 6 months, and then back to London at 11.

  • MIA has a child called Ikhyd Edgar Arular Bronfman, who was getting ready to pop out while his mum was singing at the 2009 Grammy Awards.

  • Her two albums are called Arular and Kala, which are named after her dad and mum respectively.

  • Her family had to go in to hiding during the Sri Lankan Civil War. Heavy.

Why we love MIA

MIA was born in Hounslow to Sri Lankan parents, but moved back to Sri Lanka when she was six months old. Her family are of Tamil descent and her dad was a political activist. Her music combines traditional Sri Lankan sounds and rhythms, combines them with uber-modern electronic noises and is 100% brilliant. MIA rose to international prominence with her track Paper Planes, which was on her second album Kala, and has appeared in films like Slumdog Millionaire. She is one of the best examples ever of a female artist keeping it real, and she once said: “I wanted to kill the most amazing person on the world... then I realised suicide was a crime.” She also has a clothing line called Okley Run, once modelled for Marc Jacobs and has her own record label called N.E.E.T. She’s also real pretty, and has some serious ‘tude. Basically, we love her.

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