Skepta [JMEnternational]

Skepta [JMEnternational]

Skepta has won the 2016 Hyundai Mercury Prize.

The 33-year-old Grime artist took home the coveted award for his album 'Konnichiwa' at a ceremony held at Hammersmith's Eventim Apollo in London on Thursday (15.09.16), beating favourite David Bowie, who was nominated posthumously for 'Blackstar'.

During his speech, Skepta said: "I want to say thank you to every single person that made 'Konnichiwa' happen.

"Everybody who knows that it takes to put an album together... Everybody who was there for me when I was going through depressed times."

He also thanked his parents for their support.

Judge Jarvis Cocker said: "If David Bowie was looking down on the Hammersmith Apollo tonight - and maybe he is, we've seen traces of his influence in many of the acts tonight - he would want the 2016 Mercury Prize to go to Skepta."

The prize aims to celebrate the best British albums from the past year and the 12 nominees were announced last month.

Bat for Lashes, Jamie Woon, Kano, Laura Mvula, Michael Kiwanuka, Savages, The 1975, The Comet is Coming and Anohni were among the performers at Thursday's ceremony.

Michael C. Hall also performed 'Lazarus' to celebrate 'Blackstar' being shortlisted.

He was starring in the Bowie musical 'Lazarus' when the singer passed away in January in New York after a secret cancer battle.

Before his performance, Michael said he hoped Bowie would win and added: "[Being asked to perform] is an unspeakable honour.

"It's as humbling and gratifying as anything I've ever been invited to do.

"I can't think of an exit from the stage more profound and chillingly beautiful than David's."

The judging panel previously said "This is music to make sense of our unsettling times - heartfelt, angry, thoughtful and thrilling. The 2016 Hyundai Mercury Prize 'Albums of the Year' are marked by their musical ambitions, unexpected instrumentation and breathtaking arrangements."

The 2016 Hyundai Mercury Prize for 'Album of the Year' comes with £25,000 prize money.


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