By Ahmad Muto
In September, we reported here how British born Ugandan singer Michael Kiwanuka scooped the 2020 British Mercury Prize for his album ‘Kiwanuka.’ With the same album, the singer has now scored a Grammy nomination in the 63rd Grammy awards in the Best Rock Album category.
On his Twitter account, he wrote: “I’m so proud and over the moon to say that my album ‘KIWANUKA’ has been nominated for a Grammy!!!!! I can’t believe it. So excited that I could pop. My mind is well and truly blown!!!” Universal Music Group also congratulated him; “HUGE congratulations to @michaelkiwanuka on your Best Rock Album #GRAMMYs nomination for Kiwanuka.” All that said, Kiwanuka largely identifies as British and avoids anything to do with Uganda like the plague.
It emerged after his Mercury prize win that he had been contacted mob times by Uganda journalists for interviews but left them at the blue tick level. Even now as a Grammy nominee, he hasn’t invoked Uganda anywhere.
Most of the congratulatory messages he has received are from countries outside Africa. Under his belt are a number of nominations and awards – Brit Awards, MTV Europe Music Awards, and BBC Music Awards. In January 2012, he won the BBC’s Sound of 2012. Kiwanuka was born in 1987 in Britain where his parents settled after escaping Idi Amin’s regime in the 70s.