M.I.A. gets Winehouse's Coachella slot
In her first major appearance following her pregnant performance at the 2009 Grammy Awards, globe-trotting electronic artist M.I.A. has been booked for the second night of the Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival. M.I.A. will take the April 18 spot of Amy Winehouse, who dropped out earlier this month.
M.I.A. is a Coachella veteran, having played the fest in 2005 and again last year. Reports of retirement followed M.I.A. after her last major festival performance. In June of last year, she declared her appearance at Tennessee's Bonnaroo Festival as her "last gig ever." Yet M.I.A. hasn't called it quits, and instead has had a relatively active year.
She was nominated for an Oscar with "O ... Saya," her contribution to "Slumdog Millionaire," and released the soundtrack on her own label, the Interscope-affiliated N.E.E.T. Additionally, she produced the debut from East Coast rapper Rye Rye, who performed last night at the South by Southwest music conference in Austin, Texas. M.I.A. wasn't on hand, but her presence as felt, as her name was dropped before Rye Rye took the stage to perform 25 minutes of kinetic club songs.
In an interview with Pop & Hiss earlier this year, M.I.A. hinted that she was working on new material. "I’m just writing," M.I.A. said. "You have to be in the habit of writing as much as possible. I don’t have any sort of process. I have all the artwork done and everything, but I don’t have any thoughts as to how this album should sound. It’s weird. I just need to find where I am and what I’m thinking."
-- Todd Martens
Photo: Carlos Chavez / Los Angeles Times