Ira Losco had the privilege of being chosen to collaborate with international superstar Jason Derulo for his World Cup anthem Colours, ironically a song with a message to unite people from across the world.

What she and her management did not expect is that some Maltese people would actually object to the fact that Losco was singing with a black man.

"We're talking of an international superstar and people are asking why I'm singing with a person of colour. It's ridiculous, it's really stupid. Why should I not collaborate with someone because they have a different religion, culture or skin?"

Losco, who recently released her double album called No Sinner, No Saint, believes Malta has a problem with racism. 

Why would you drive to a place, take your child with you, to hurl insults at a person who is fighting for his life?

As the migration issue once again dominates the news agenda, she expressed shock at the video footage of a mother urging her child to hurl insults at exhausted migrants arriving in Malta. 

Watch: 'Go back to your country' - Maltese mother eggs on child to tell exhausted migrants

"Why would you drive to a place, take your child with you, to hurl insults at a person who is fighting for his life? I understand our island is small, but I don't understand the lack of empathy," she said, though she pointed out she understood the problems migration could pose on a small island like Malta. 

Touching on other social issues, she expresses disappointment at the disrespect shown by the younger, so-called social media generation. 

"They wants stuff done now and they want it easy. It's about instant gratification. There's a general lack of empathy in my opinion," she says.

Ultimately, she says the longevity of those who want to thrive in the arts scene depends on what she terms as USP - their unique selling point.

The award-winning singer also speaks about the gender disparities in the industry and the way she had to ward off the sexual advances of men.

However, she says it is very positive that women's movements are coming to the fore and creating a seismic shift in society.  

Watch the full Times Talk interview with Ira Losco in the video above.

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