In an unexpected pairing, Ingrid Michaelson has teamed with former One Direction member ZAYN — aka Zayn Malik — for a new duet called “To Begin Again.”
Ingrid initially wrote the song in November after Joe Biden won the presidential election. In a statement, she said, “There was so much joy in my neighborhood. Pots and pans being banged out of windows. Horns and whistles. Clapping. Singing! The collective sigh of relief resonated with me in such a way that I had to get it out musically.”
After writing the song, Ingrid decided it should be a duet. That’s where ZAYN came in.
Ingrid tells Apple Music’s Zane Lowe, “ZAYN’s management had reached out to mine and said, ‘[He] is a big fan of Ingrid‘s and wants to work on something with her.’ This was in January of 2020, and And I was like, ‘ZAYN? Why does ZAYN want to work with me?…But, okay. Cool."”
So Ingrid decided to make the song a duet, she thought of ZAYN, because, she says he has a “beautiful high voice when he wants to. So, we reached out to him, and they immediately were like, “Yeah. He loves it. He wants to do it.”
ZAYN then emailed his part to her. “I’ve never spoken to him. We haven’t communicated,” Ingrid admits.
“The fact that he chose to sing on my song is like extremely amazing,” she adds. “And the fact that he chose to do that now, especially knowing what I know about him, which is he is very elusive.”
Of course, this isn’t ZAYN’s first duet with a female singer/songwriter: He and Taylor Swift teamed for the Grammy-nominated 2017 duet “I Don’t Wanna Live Forever,” which hit number two on the chart.
By Andrea Dresdale
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