Zayn Malik on the rebound with Naughty Boy
As Zayn Malik teases a solo song less than a week after leaving One Direction, we see how it compares to previous band-to-solo efforts
The plot thickens: looks like someone didn't appreciate this track being released because it's been disappeared from Soundcloud. Perhaps Naughty Boy been a, er, naughty boy...
In a move that's only surprising in its rapidity, Zayn Malik (ex-One Direction, in case you'd forgotten) has teased his first solo effort.
Just five days after leaving the boyband, Malik has collaborated with producer/troller Naughty Boy, who announced the news on his Twitter feed following something of a flame war with 1D band member Louis Tomlinson on the social network. 'I Won't Mind', a simple vocal/acoustic guitar affair as it stands, is unlikely to set the charts alight (and where's the high note?).
Malik isn't the first to face the wrath of a million distraught fans by moving on so effortlessly, but where does he stand when it comes to the debut solo sounds of other band deserters? Here's a round-up of the most memorable in recent years.
5. Brian McFadden
Clearly expecting more from the boyband-to-solo pie, McFadden quit Irish balladeers Westlife in 2004. His first single, 'Real to Me' was a forgettable dig at the music industry, so, naturally, it charted joint-highest of this list, at number one in the UK charts.
4. Geri Halliwell
Launching her solo career in 1999 with a number two in the UK charts – 'Look At Me' – Geri came attention-seekingly screaming from the Spice Girls with a video that depicted her as Madonna, whore and everything in between. While not as catchy as her later songs 'Bag it Up' or even 'Scream if You Wanna go Faster', her first solo single could have been worse ('Mi Chico Latino', we're looking at you).
3. Robbie Williams
Before he reached the heady heights of wedding cliché 'Angels', after splitting from Take That (the first time round) Robbie Williams released a cover of George Michael's 'Freedom', sending a not-so-subtle message to the group. It reached number two in the UK charts, but will never hit 'She's the One' heights in our hearts.
2. Justin Timberlake
In 2002, Timberlake broke from the *NSYNC deathgrip and released the Pharrell Williams-written/produced 'Like I Love You'. Peaking at number 11 on the Billboard 100, the song throws back to funk and cemented Timberlake's Michael Jackson influences. The song went on to receive a Grammy nomination for Best Rap/Sung Collaboration, but lost out to the Nelly/Kelly Rowland collaboration 'Dilemma'.
Queen Bey went solo during a Destiny's Child 'hiatus' back in 2003 and her first song as a lead artist was dancefloor-filler 'Crazy in Love', featuring Jay-Z. Not only is it a timeless piece of pop that catapulted her to the number one spot in the US and UK, it also formally introduced us to one of our favourite musical couplings.