Zayn Makes Surprise Appearance on ‘Tonight Show’ to Tease ‘What I Am’ Single

Zayn has long been a man of few words. The former One Direction singer and solo star made a surprise appearance on The Tonight Show on Wednesday night (March 13), and in keeping with his let-the-music-do-the-talking demeanor, the 31-year-old’s mid-monologue walk-on was silent, but heady.


Carrying a coffee mug and a note card, Zayn casually sidled up to host Jimmy Fallon as the studio audience lost their collective minds. Wearing an all-black ensemble and sporting a short beard, the singer walked up behind Fallon’s desk and cued up his new ballad, “What I Am” on the host’s laptop before handing him the note.

He then shook Fallon’s hand, nodded, gave the audience a look and casually walked off amid the screams of delight. “Zayn! What’s Zayn doing here?” Fallon said in mock surprise as the singer — his knee-length leather duster flapping behind him — walked off without a word. “Jimmy, look to your right for my album,” Fallon said, reading the note from the vocalist who announced his fourth solo album, Room Under the Stairs, earlier in the day.

Fallon then held up the album’s moody cover, which features a silhouette of Zayn’s face superimposed with an image of a space below a set of stairs in a home, and announced that the single is out on Friday (March 15), with the LP following on May 17.

The follow-up to Zayn’s 2021 album Nobody Is Listening will come after the singer released the single “Love Like This” last year. In addition to the new LP, Zayn will co-star in the upcoming animated feature 10 Lives, for which he also wrote new music and performed a duet with Bridgerton star Simone Ashley; Zayn will also be the executive producer of the movie and oversee its musical creative direction.

Check out Zayn’s Tonight Show cameo below.

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