British singer Michael Kiwanuka has released a cracking new
single, giving fans a taste of what’s to come when his new album drops in
You Ain’t The Problem is the first track off the
self-titled album KIWANUKA, due out 25 October.
The song features the Londoner’s trademark soulful vocals but has a bigger, bolder and more triumphant sound than some of his previous work.
Speaking on Radio 1 the two-time Mercury Music award nominee
described it as “a defiant song about not beating yourself up too much”.
“It’s so easy [with social media] to compare and see things that
look like everyone else is better than you. I got tired of that thinking and
beating myself up.
“As soon as you start looking after yourself you realise
that life isn’t so bad. We should cherish who we are and be proud of who we are
whatever we’re doing in life.”
Kiwanuka, whose parents were born in Uganda, grew up in
Muswell Hill and started his career as a guitarist. He gradually developed the
confidence to go solo and quickly gained a reputation for his raw, powerful
The singer cites Radiohead’s album OK Computer and “the
emotion of Thom Yorke’s voice” as major inspirations along with Kurt Cobain and
The Verve’s Richard Ashcroft.
Check him out here on Tell Me A Tale.
Kiwanuka got one of his first big breaks in 2011 when he
toured with Adele. He says the singer taught him the importance of staying true
to himself and not changing to please other people.
Kiwanuka’s first two albums Home Again and Love &
Hate brimmed with soul. The latter included the powerful Black Man In A White
World, for which he won an Ivor Novello Award.
For his third album he worked again with long-time
collaborators Danger Mouse and Inflo and said the aim was to create something
bold and vivid.
“I just wanted to be proud of who I am and be excited to be an artist and a singer,” he said.