My God, did Sampha deserve the Mercury Prize Award

Claudia Knight /
Sep 15, 2017 / Music

Emerging from the distant waters of MySpace almost a decade ago, the soothing yet undeniably tormented vocals of one man have pulled on and repaired the world’s heartstrings.

From collaborating with SBTRKT and Solange to duetting with Jessie Ware, Sampha has well and truly made a name for himself not only as a musician, but as a producer and all-round storyteller.

Last night saw the Mercury Prize in London, an event where the biggest and brightest of our musical stars get to shine. Up against fellow musical giants, Ed Sheeran and Stormzy, Sampha was awarded the 2017 Hyundai Mercury Prize Award and, my god, does he deserve it.

If you haven’t listened to Process, Sampha’s debut album, then I’d recommend doing so in the company of a box of tissues and good friends. Its rare to come across a musician who so effortlessly captures heartbreak in all of its forms, not just that induced by a now absent lover. Take ‘No One Knows Me Like The Piano’, for example. The song is so sadly beautiful and transmits the pain of losing a parent so transparently that you physically feel his pain. I dare you to listen to it without welling up.

Sampha is going from strength to strength and has only just left his first mark in the music industry. Not only is he an individual unafraid to speak about the brutal reality of life and death, he is also trailblazing the way for other young, unapologetically emotional people to have faith in their ability to create.

Words by Claudia Knight

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