It’s happening, people! Yep, after months of anicipation, Zayn Malik just announced that his brand new single, “Better,” is dropping on September 25, 2020, and we can’t wait! He shared the exciting news on September 23, 2020, alongside a preview for the upcoming music video for the song, and everyone is super excited about it.

But wait, does the former One Direction member have any more new music in the works? Is he gearing up to release his third studio album? Should we prepare ourselves for #Z3? We decided to investigate once and for all, here’s what you need to know about his upcoming album…

Why Did Fans Think Malik Was Releasing New Music?

Before he announced that “Better” was on the way, rumors started to spread that the singer was about to release new music when he changed his Spotify header image. It now features a brand new pic of Malik that shows him sitting in the woods surrounded by leaves and greenery. He also updated his Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and Twitter photo. Naturally, since the 27-year-old is normally pretty quiet on social media, the sudden change quickly sent fans into a frenzy.

“ZAYN IS COMING,” one fan tweeted at the time, with another adding, “IF ZAYN CHANGED HIS SPOTIFY PICTURE THEN IT’S ABSOLUTELY MUSIC RELATED OH GOD WHAT IF HE IS GONNA RELEASE A SINGLE?”

A third fan wrote, “IG, Twitter, Spotify and YouTube? I’M NOT OK! Zayn, why are you giving us heart attacks like this?” Relatable.

He’s Been Spotted In The Studio Recently

To add fuel to the fire, the “Pillowtalk” artist posted a photo of himself in the studio to Instagram on September 10, 2020. He captioned it, “Got some stuff to show ya soon!”

So should we expect a new album from him in the near future? Until he makes an official announcement, it’s all just speculation for now, but we really hope he shares some more details soon!

Malik Is About To Become A Dad

His new music is not the only exciting thing in Malik’s life these days. For those who don’t know, the musician is about to become a dad! He and his girlfriend, Gigi Hadid, confirmed that they were expecting their first baby together back in April, and we couldn’t be more excited for them!

“Obviously, we wish we could’ve announced it on our own terms, but we’re very excited and happy and grateful for everyone’s well wishes and support,” the model told The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at the time.

When Is The Baby Due?

A few days later, Hadid’s mom, Yolanda Hadid, revealed that the baby is due in September.

“Still shocked our little secret got leaked to the press. Of course we are so excited,” she told RTL Boulevard. “I’m excited to become Oma in September especially after I lost my mom so recently. But this is the beauty of life, one soul leaves us and a new one comes in. We feel very blessed.”

E! News also reported on August 25, 2020, that the couple had moved back into their New York City apartment (after spending most of the pregnancy on a farm in Pennsylvania) to prepare for the birth. An insider told them that the couple “selected the furnishings for the nursery, paged through their collection of parenting books and peppered Yolanda with any and every question that has come to mind.”

Plus, on August 31, 2020, the 25-year-old gave us another clue about when the baby was due. She shared a snap of her growing baby bump and she captioned it “33 weeks.” Pregnancies usually last 37 weeks to 40 weeks, so that means the baby is coming any day now!

Zayn Malik and Gigi Hadid

But She Definitely Hasn’t Given Birth Just Yet

The blonde beauty’s sister, Bella Hadid, left fans wondering if she had given birth already on September 15, 2020, when she posted a snap of her and Gigi to Instagram.

“June 11, 2020… Two buns in the oven except mine is from my burger and Gigi’s is from @zayn,” Bella wrote, alongside a picture that showed her and Gigi cradling their stomaches together. But when she added, “I love you both so freaking much — can’t stop crying,” many people started to wonder if she was “crying” because Gigi had given birth.

Plus, Hadid’s dad, Mohammed Hadid, shared a picture of a poem he wrote called “Grandpa’s Heart” — fueling the speculation even more.

“Hello little grandchild, it is me. My heart as happy as can be,” it read. “I wish for you the sun and moon. I wish for you a happy time.”

But Hadid’s mom cleared up the rumors on September 19, 2020. She confirmed that the baby wasn’t born just yet, when she wrote on Instagram, “Waiting patiently for her angel to be born…”

Here’s A Brief Recap Of Malik’s Career

Zayn Malik

As fans know, Malik first rose to fame in 2010, when he auditioned on the show The X Factor. At the time, he was put into the band One Direction alongside Harry Styles, Niall Horan, Liam Payne and Louis Tomlinson. They ended up coming in third place on the singing competition series, and their career instantly took off. They went on to release four epic albums together, break numerous records, embark on tons of world tours, win loads of awards and so much more! But in March 2015, the pop star shocked the entire world when he announced that he was leaving the band.

“My life with One Direction has been more than I could ever have imagined. But, after five years, I feel like it is now the right time for me to leave the band,” he wrote on Facebook. “I’d like to apologize to the fans if I’ve let anyone down, but I have to do what feels right in my heart. I am leaving because I want to be a normal 22-year-old who is able to relax and have some private time out of the spotlight.”

But things didn’t end there for him. Malik dropped his first solo album, Mind of Mine, in March 2016. It debuted at number one in a number of countries, including the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, and United States, where he became the first British male solo artist to debut at number one with his first album. His second LP, Icarus Falls, came out on December 14, 2018, and it was seriously full of bops.

Why Did He Leave One Direction?

One Direction

Months after Malik announced his departure from the band, he opened up about his decision to Fader Magazine.

“I think the boys kind of knew in terms of the music, that wasn’t my cup of tea. They knew that, they were aware of that, always,” he explained. “They would try to facilitate certain things for me so I could sing R&B ad-libs here or there and that was nice but obviously I think they always knew. When I was leaving the band, they obviously didn’t want me to leave, but they couldn’t talk me out of it at that point. I had already made up my mind so I just left.”

The singer also claimed that he “never wanted to be in the band” during a 2016 interview.

“I think I always kind of wanted to go. From like the first year really, I never really wanted to be there in the band,” he admitted. “I just gave it a go because it was there at the time and then when I realized the direction we were going in with the music, I instantly realized it wasn’t for me because I realized I couldn’t put any input in. I couldn’t give my opinion on this or that because it didn’t fit the grain of what we were as a band or what we represented. So that’s when it became frustrating for me, that’s when I had to be like, ‘I’ve got to start thinking about myself.’”

Is Malik Still Close With His Former Band Members?

When asked about his relationship with the rest of the guys in November 2017, Malik admitted that he was no longer on speaking terms with them.

“Our relationships have definitely changed since we were in a band together, but I think that’s just life. Everybody grows up. Two of the guys have got kids now. But no, I don’t talk to any of them, really,” he revealed to Billboard.

He also admitted in a November 2018 interview, “We went from theaters, to arenas, to stadiums — there was never any sort of bridge between. Just boom, boom, boom. I guess that kind of progression to any mind — but especially when you’re 17, 18 — it kind of affects you a little bit. People take it different ways — especially when there are five different personalities. The relationships had broken apart. I ain’t spoke to any of them for a long time, to be honest with you. That’s just the way it is. There’s things that happen and things that were said after I left… Snide things. Small things that I would never have expected.”