The singer’s management says she is still scheduled to perform.

M.I.A. was recently announced as a headliner for the UK’s first Afropunk Festival, a decision that drew criticism due to her dismissive comments about the Black Lives Matter movement earlier this year. Now she has responded to the backlash and alluded to dropping out of the festival in a series of tweets.

“Sorry I’m not doin Afropunk. I’ve been told to stay in my lane. Ha there is no lane for 65mil refugees who’s lanes are blown up!” she wrote, adding that if “pulling the show saves the cause and lives then that’s what I’ll do”.

Representatives for M.I.A. tell Pitchfork her appearance is still on.

M.I.A. originally drew criticism from Black Lives Matter supporters for saying it was simply “the problem you’re allowed to talk about [in America]” and suggesting artists who showed support were being hypocritical.

“It’s not a new thing to me – it’s what Lauryn Hill was saying in the 1990s, or Public Enemy in the 1980s. Is Beyoncé​ or Kendrick Lamar going to say Muslim Lives Matter? Or Syrian Lives Matter? Or this kid in Pakistan matters? That’s a more interesting question,” she told ES Magazine in April.

M.I.A.’s currently untitled album is due this year while Afropunk Festival is scheduled for September 24. Read her tweets on the issue below.



Share Tweet

Privacy Preference Center

Required Cookies & Technologies

Some of the technologies we use are necessary for critical functions like security and site integrity, account authentication, security and privacy preferences, internal site usage and maintenance data, and to make the site work correctly for browsing and transactions.

gdpr, woocommerce_cart_hash, woocommerce_items_in_cart, _wp_wocommerce_session, sucuri_cloudproxy_uuid_*

Site Customisation

Cookies and similar technologies are used to improve your experience, to do things like:

- remember your login, general, and regional preferences
- personalize content, search, recommendations, and offers

Without these technologies, things like personalised recommendations, your account preferences, or localisation may not work correctly.


Personalised Advertising

These technologies are used for things like:

- personalised ads
- to limit how many times you see an ad
- to understand usage via Google Analytics
- to understand how you got to our web properties
- to ensure that we understand the audience and can provide relevant ads

We do this with social media, marketing, and analytics partners (who may have their own information they’ve collected). Saying no will not stop you from seeing our ads, but it may make them less relevant or more repetitive.

_ga, _gid, gat,_gads,_fbp