M.I.A. Says Her New Video Is Being Held Due To Cultural Appropriation Concerns

Carl Williott | May 19, 2015 9:03 am

M.I.A. has had a few dust-ups with Interscope over the years, with the biggest being her threat to leak Matangi for free a couple years ago. And now she may be in the midst of another battle with her label. The musician says her latest video (for “Platforms” perhaps?) is being barred from release, presumably by her label, because of cultural appropriation concerns.

According to her tweets, she shot the video in the Ivory Coast, and it stars a famous local dancer doing a one-take performance, but she can’t release it “because it’s shot in Africa.”


With so few details and just one side of this story, it’s hard to know exactly what’s going on. But it’s puzzling to see M.I.A. get hit with cultural appropriation charges, since she has spent her entire career creating a thoroughly globalist collage of cultural sounds and visuals. Whether using gunshots over a Clash sample or making a political statement about women driving in Saudi Arabia, her presentation is constantly toying with the idea of how technology affects traditions and breaks down barriers. That’s hardly in the same league as, say, Iggy Azalea adopting a Southern rap drawl.

Check out M.I.A.’s tweets on the matter below.







Well, the good news is that if she’s beefing with her label, it must mean she’s ramping up for a new release.