Zayn Malik was born in Bradford, England, to Tricia (Brannan) and Yaser Malik, and is of Pakistani (father) and English-Irish (mother) descent. He had an early love for singing and performing, and at the age of 17 he competed in the television competition The X Factor. After judges Nicole Scherzinger and Simon Cowell grouped him with fellow competitors Harry Styles, Niall Horan, Liam Payne and Louis Tomlinson to form a new act, One Direction became one of the most popular finalists in their season of The X Factor.
Following the band's massive success, Malik left the group in 2015 to pursue a solo career. ZAYN signed with RCA Records and moved to Los Angeles, where he began working on his solo effort with James "Malay" Ho (Frank Ocean, Big Boi). His debut single, "Pillowtalk," was released in late January 2016 and debuted at #1 on the Billboard charts and his full-length debut album Mind of Mine was released on March 25, 2016.
ZAYN entered the fashion world in 2016 with his shoe collaboration with Giuseppe Zanotti and began working on his Versus Versace link (to be released May 2017). In August of 2016, Malik also signed on to executive produce the new television series BOYS with Law & Order creator Dick Wolf and Universal Pictures. The series is set to follow a boy band as they go through the waves of huge success similar to that of One Direction.
In late 2016, ZAYN re-entered the music world with the Taylor Swift assisted single, "I Don't Want To Live Forever" from the Fifty Shades Darker soundtrack. The song dominated debuted at #1 on the Digital Songs chart and #6 on the Billboard Hot 100. Malik followed the single up in March of 2017 with "Still Got Time" featuring PARTYNEXTDOOR which is the first official single off ZAYN's upcoming sophomore album.