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You are here: Entertainment Music headline Uganda's Michael Kiwanuka has been nominated for an MTV 2012 EMA award

Uganda's Michael Kiwanuka has been nominated for an MTV 2012 EMA award

Softly spoken UK based Ugandan Soul Singer-songwriter Michael Kiwanuka who is signed to Communion Records has been nominated for an MTV 2012 EMA award (MTV Europe Music Awards).

The soulful, melodic singer is nominated in the 'Best Push' category with other singers like Rita Ora,Rebecca Ferguson,Of Monsters And Men, Mac Miller, Lana Del Rey, Fun, Gotye, Foster The People, Conor Maynard and Carly Rae Jepsen.

Michael Kiwanuka originally set out to be a session guitarist who wrote tracks for other artists—but today he’s a buzzed-about singer-songwriter in his own right. The soul singer won the BBC’s Sound of 2012 poll, and was named an MTV PUSH artist in March, proving that he may have old-school soul and folk influences, but his raw emotional music resonates with modern audiences. Michael is known for a voice that goes ‘straight to the core’ of listeners. His EP ‘Home Again’ was released earlier this year.

Michael 24 was born and raised in Muswell Hill, North London by pretty relaxed Ugandan parents in terms of the African rules who fled the African continent during the Amin regime. In the house his parents spoke Luganda even though he doesn't know it very well. It was a very African home. They ate pretty much all African food all the time. But it wasn’t like an intense home where you feel like you are in Uganda.There was definitely a big Muswell Hill feel in there. But where the African culture came in was like the education and speaking proper English, lots of family gatherings so that was there but it was very mixed in with the western culture too. He speaks Luganda like the level of a toddler. He claims he can speak some words and get through a basic conversation. And he can basically talk to a toddler and tell them to be quiet if they annoy him. But If he goes to the village he can’t because it’s too fast and too deep for him.

He has been in Uganda three times though he hasn't been there in the last six years, since he was eighteen. His grandmother is still alive and he says it’s great she has her own place. Everyone always cooks outside and stays outside until the sun goes down and he loves it. There are no real front doors. And his grandmother lives on a rough road that is very bumpy, so they use motorbikes called “boda bodas”. He says "It’s just a very good vibe". He admits that It does get boring though because he doesn't know Luganda and he can’t get involved, but if he did he would spend more time there because it is just very natural.

He may have old-school and folk influences, but his music speaks to modern audiences.

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