Zayn Malik performed”It’s You” on the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. If you missed it, you can see the video here. The performance is just a little over a month ahead of the Mind of Mine album release on March 25. That date has special significance for Zayn because on that day last year, Zayn quit One Direction. It is an auspicious day, and no doubt filled with mixed emotions for Zayn. It was a rite of passage, and the day he took out a bet on himself. Now, it appears he has won that bet.
Zayn Malik performing “It’s You” was a huge surprise for most fans, who were expecting a performance of “Pillowtalk.” Malik should be proud of “Pillowtalk,” as well as his promising new song “It’s You.” His career as a solo artist is well on its way. “Pillowtalk” made it to the top of the charts as the No. 1 single the first week it came out. Jimmy Fallon announced that “Pillowtalk” was No. 1 in 68 different countries this week. People all over the world love Zayn, and reviews of his hit single are all glowing.
Zayn Malik experienced quite a case of nerves ahead of his performance on the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. A source told Hollywood Life that Zayn had some butterflies a few hours before the performance last night. It was his first live performance as a solo artist, and his first live performance of the song “Pillowtalk,” or so everyone believed. No one knew he was going to sing the new song, “It’s You.” Live performance is always a scary thing, so is singing a new song, but that is something musicians get accustomed to. Perhaps, it was the feeling of the results being his alone, with all his work being judged? Would the audience like it?
It is easy to imagine Zayn Malik pacing around in some stereotypical dressing room, jittery and full of butterflies, but we all know, when it is time to perform, he always delivers. It’s just harder for him to believe that than it is for his fans. After all, he is the one putting himself out there, hoping his music will please the viewers.
The night had some confusing elements. Snoop Dogg was supposed to appear, but got caught up in traffic and didn’t make it to the show in time. Zayn might have felt more at ease if Snoop had been there. The song switch was a total surprise, as fans were expecting “Pillowtalk.”
Instead, the late night audience heard a brand new Zayn Malik song for the first time. “It’s You,” is an amazing song, at least as beautiful as “Pillowtalk,” so it was a pleasant surprise.
Zayn Malik need not have been worried, though. His performance was flawless, and all the sound and lighting and effects seemed to be working as well. The lighting was soft, barely there at the beginning as Zayn stood before the audience, wearing a black trench coat over a black shirt. He was clutching the microphone softly, as if it were his lover’s face. His feet shuffled about one step as he settled into the song.
Zayn Malik’s voice began very softly and melodically as the first few bars of “It’s You” were heard for the first time ever, but it was steady and strong, just gentle. For the first few moments, his gaze was focused on the microphone, eyes almost closed at times. But when he looked up, he flashed a bit of panic, like a tiny fire in his soft brown eyes. This was about 15 seconds into the song, but there was nothing wrong, just those nerves he had admitted to earlier. Zayn Malik performed “It’s You” like a pro, in spite of any fears he may have felt.
The lighting chosen for the performance must have been confusing, with patterns of light streaming all over him that spelled out words. They moved when he moved, and they were bright in spots and dark in others. It would have made vision difficult on stage. Still, Zayn never faltered, not once.
Zayn Malik proved with the song “It’s You” that he can deal with a live solo performance, just as easily and comfortably as he always has with the group.
[Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images]