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Michael Kiwanuka is back in Birmingham this March – tickets are sold-out but you can join the waiting list below
When Michael Kiwanuka received a less than favourable end of year report from the Royal Academy of Music where he was learning to be a jazz guitarist, he didn’t take the criticism well and dropped out becoming a session guitarist. Even though he had flunked, he was still a great musician and his talent was recognised by Polydor records who signed him in 2011. He topped the BBC Sounds of 2012 the following year and released his debut studio album “Home Again” which reached #4 in the UK.
Plagued by a recurrence of self-doubt in which he passed up the opportunity of working with Kanye West on Yeezus he released Black Man In a White World, a raw, bluesy outsider track with a hand claps rhythm influenced by Son House, which piqued the interest of Grammy award winning producer Danger Mouse resulting in the second album “Love & Hate” released in 2016 becoming a springboard for success. The album was critically acclaimed and hit the top spot in the UK with its reach stretching out over the Atlantic when HBO used the single Cold Little Heart as the opening theme music to “Big Little Lies”.
With his third album, the self-titled “Kiwanuka” released to even further acclaim in November last year, with some critics hailing it as not only the album of the year, but album of the decade, it looks like the artist’s star is on the ascendancy and he is finally able to shake off those insecurities. Teeming with musical styles from gospel and soul to rock and blues and multiple influences from Jimi Hendrix and The Rolling Stones to Otis Redding and Curtis Mayfield, the album has been described as a song-cycle best heard in one sitting, filed next to Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Going On?” and Primal Scream’s “Screamadelica”. In support of the brilliant new album, Kiwanuka is heading out on a world tour which lands in the UK for its sold-out leg on March 1st at Birmingham’s O2 Academy.
You can listen to You Ain’t the Problem, the opening track from Micheal Kiwanuka’s self-title third album below:
See Michael Kiwanuka’s full list of UK tour dates below:
01 – O2 Academy, Birmingham
02 – O2 Guildhall, Southampton
03 – O2 Academy, Bournemouth
05 – O2 Academy Brixton, London
07 – O2 Apollo, Manchester
09 – Corn Exchange, Cambridge
10 – De Montford Hall, Leicester
12 – O2 Academy, Leeds
13 – O2 Academy, Newcastle-Upon-Tyne
14 – Barrowland, Glasgow
27 – Alexandra Palace, London