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On M.I.A.’s most recent album, she refers to herself as “the female Slick Rick.” She’s powerful, both musically and aesthetically, and has intrigued wide audiences with her confident individualism and uncommon artistry. Born to Sri Lankan parents and growing up in London, she pulls influence from her globally eclectic upbringing and spiritual background, and has proven herself not only as a creative, but also as an intellectual. To top it off, she’s received a BET Award, two MTV Video Music Awards, and is a Grammy nominee.

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