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Michael Kiwanuka

Singer Songwriter from North London

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 Michael Kiwanuka Biography

With Michael Kiwanuka, it’s all about the voice. A voice that he describes as “hitting straight through to the core” with direct, emotional songs about love, yearning, comfort and belonging. It’s a voice that built him a following via MySpace and small London gigs, and led Paul Butler from The Bees to invite him to the band’s Isle of Wight studio to lay down these introductory tracks from what promises to be a major new British singer/songwriter. Which makes it all the more strange, really, that what Michael originally set out to be was a session guitarist who maybe wrote the odd song for other people.

Growing up in North London, he struggled at times to see where he fitted in. An avid England and Spurs fan, he found it hard to imagine a day when a name like Kiwanuka could sit comfortably on the back of a football shirt here. Nonetheless, when his parents took him and his brother back to Uganda to visit family, he and his brother were immediately recognised as British tourists. Like most of his schoolmates, he liked bands like Nirvana, Radiohead, Offspring and Blur, but it was only when he discovered that Jimi Hendrix was black that he understood he had a place playing rock guitar.

In his teens, two other icons helped him find his voice. A friend gave him a Bob Dylan box set, and Michael was bowled over by the power of a well-crafted song, delivered with just urgent vocals and an acoustic guitar. Later, he was playing the free CD that came with a music magazine and heard an out-take of ‘Sitting on the Dock of the Bay’ in which Otis Redding was talking to the studio engineer. It made the soul icon seem more human, more accessible, and though there were later to be other influences from Bill Withers and Terry Callier to John Martyn and Laura Marling, it was Dylan and Redding who laid the foundations for Michael’s own rootsy, folk-inflected modern soul.

He played in rock bands at school, and when he was 16 went east to Hackney in search of other musicians to work with. He began hanging out with Tinie Tempah collaborator Labrinth at his studio, played contemporary R&B, soul and jazz-funk at small jam sessions, and did some session guitar for the likes of Tottenham rapper Chipmunk. “It was fun and I learned loads, but I still felt like I didn’t quite fit in. I couldn’t express the side of me that had played in rock bands, or listened to Dylan or Nirvana.”

He began writing his own songs quietly at home, just for fun. They weren’t meant for other people to hear – at least not at first. “No one would give me a gig playing the kind of music I loved, so I had to write my own. It was more to keep my passion in music alive, just something to do to keep my soul warm, you know. It didn’t fit into what was in the charts at the time!”

Eventually, he recorded demos of a few songs, hoping to give them to others to perform. But he was surprised to find that people loved his voice, and began encouraging him to play small shows. And finally, he found his place in the world. “I love singing live, the feeling when you really connect with an audience, when suddenly there’s a hush and you can feel it in the air. It doesn’t happen all the time, but when it does, it’s really special.”

This debut EP was produced by Paul Butler of The Bees, in the band’s Isle of Wight studio. “I’d just been playing my songs with an acoustic guitar, and that will always be the core, the thing I come back to. But Paul also encouraged me to mix in the kind of music I was playing when I was hanging out in Hackney, so I got to play a bit more electric, and a bit of bass, and it turned out to be quite a soulful record. It’s got folk things there but also influences like Shuggie Otis and Curtis Mayfield. I really enjoyed making it.”

Tell Me A Tale, I Need Your Company and Worry Walks Beside Me are timeless songs that could only have come from Britain in 2011. Real, raw and achingly beautiful, they are just a taste of what is to come.

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FAQs
  • HOW TO BOOK Michael Kiwanuka?

    Our booking agents have successfully helped clients around the world secure talent like Michael Kiwanuka for speaking engagements, personal appearances, product endorsements, or corporate entertainment for over 15 years. The team at All American Entertainment represents and listens to the needs of organizations and corporations seeking to hire keynote speakers, celebrities or entertainers. Fill out a booking request form for Michael Kiwanuka, or call our office at 1.800.698.2536 to discuss your upcoming event. One of our experienced agents will be happy to help you get pricing information and check availability for Michael Kiwanuka or any other celebrity of your choice.
  • HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO BOOK Michael Kiwanuka?

    Booking fees for Michael Kiwanuka, or any other speakers and celebrities, are determined based on a number of factors and may change without notice. Pricing often varies according to the circumstances, including the talent's schedule, market conditions, length of presentation, and the location of the event. Speaker fees listed on this website are intended to serve as a guideline only. In some cases, the actual quote may be above or below the stated range. For the most current fee to hire Michael Kiwanuka, please fill out the booking request form or call our office at 1.800.698.2536 to speak with an experienced booking agent.
  • WHO IS THE AGENT FOR Michael Kiwanuka?

    All American Entertainment has successfully secured celebrity talent like Michael Kiwanuka for clients worldwide for more than 15 years. As a full-service talent booking agency, we have access to virtually any speaker or celebrity in the world. Our agents are happy and able to submit an offer to the speaker or celebrity of your choice, letting you benefit from our reputation and long-standing relationships in the industry. Fill out the booking request form or call our office at 1.800.698.2536, and one of our agents will assist you to book Michael Kiwanuka for your next private or corporate function.
  • WHAT IS A FULL-SERVICE TALENT BOOKING AGENCY?

    All American Speakers is a "buyers agent" and exclusively represents talent buyers, meeting planners and event professionals, who are looking to secure celebrities and speakers for personal appearances, speaking engagements, corporate entertainment, public relations campaigns, commercials, or endorsements. We do not exclusively represent Michael Kiwanuka or claim ourselves as the exclusive booking agency, business manager, publicist, speakers bureau or management for Michael Kiwanuka or any other speaker or celebrity on this website. For more information on how we work and what makes us unique, please read the AAE Advantage.
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This website is a resource for event professionals and strives to provide the most comprehensive catalog of thought leaders and industry experts to consider for speaking engagements. A listing or profile on this website does not imply an agency affiliation or endorsement by the talent.

All American Entertainment (AAE) exclusively represents the interests of talent buyers, and does not claim to be the agency or management for any speaker or artist on this site. AAE is a talent booking agency for paid events only. We do not handle requests for donation of time or media requests for interviews, and cannot provide celebrity contact information.

If you are the talent, and wish to request removal from this catalog or report an issue with your profile, please click here.

Michael Kiwanuka

Singer Songwriter from North London

Travels From:
London, UK
Speaking Fee:
Categories:

Michael Kiwanuka Biography

With Michael Kiwanuka, it’s all about the voice. A voice that he describes as “hitting straight through to the core” with direct, emotional songs about love, yearning, comfort and belonging. It’s a voice that built him a following via MySpace and small London gigs, and led Paul Butler from The Bees to invite him to the band’s Isle of Wight studio to lay down these introductory tracks from what promises to be a major new British singer/songwriter. Which makes it all the more strange, really, that what Michael originally set out to be was a session guitarist who maybe wrote the odd song for other people.

Growing up in North London, he struggled at times to see where he fitted in. An avid England and Spurs fan, he found it hard to imagine a day when a name like Kiwanuka could sit comfortably on the back of a football shirt here. Nonetheless, when his parents took him and his brother back to Uganda to visit family, he and his brother were immediately recognised as British tourists. Like most of his schoolmates, he liked bands like Nirvana, Radiohead, Offspring and Blur, but it was only when he discovered that Jimi Hendrix was black that he understood he had a place playing rock guitar.

In his teens, two other icons helped him find his voice. A friend gave him a Bob Dylan box set, and Michael was bowled over by the power of a well-crafted song, delivered with just urgent vocals and an acoustic guitar. Later, he was playing the free CD that came with a music magazine and heard an out-take of ‘Sitting on the Dock of the Bay’ in which Otis Redding was talking to the studio engineer. It made the soul icon seem more human, more accessible, and though there were later to be other influences from Bill Withers and Terry Callier to John Martyn and Laura Marling, it was Dylan and Redding who laid the foundations for Michael’s own rootsy, folk-inflected modern soul.

He played in rock bands at school, and when he was 16 went east to Hackney in search of other musicians to work with. He began hanging out with Tinie Tempah collaborator Labrinth at his studio, played contemporary R&B, soul and jazz-funk at small jam sessions, and did some session guitar for the likes of Tottenham rapper Chipmunk. “It was fun and I learned loads, but I still felt like I didn’t quite fit in. I couldn’t express the side of me that had played in rock bands, or listened to Dylan or Nirvana.”

He began writing his own songs quietly at home, just for fun. They weren’t meant for other people to hear – at least not at first. “No one would give me a gig playing the kind of music I loved, so I had to write my own. It was more to keep my passion in music alive, just something to do to keep my soul warm, you know. It didn’t fit into what was in the charts at the time!”

Eventually, he recorded demos of a few songs, hoping to give them to others to perform. But he was surprised to find that people loved his voice, and began encouraging him to play small shows. And finally, he found his place in the world. “I love singing live, the feeling when you really connect with an audience, when suddenly there’s a hush and you can feel it in the air. It doesn’t happen all the time, but when it does, it’s really special.”

This debut EP was produced by Paul Butler of The Bees, in the band’s Isle of Wight studio. “I’d just been playing my songs with an acoustic guitar, and that will always be the core, the thing I come back to. But Paul also encouraged me to mix in the kind of music I was playing when I was hanging out in Hackney, so I got to play a bit more electric, and a bit of bass, and it turned out to be quite a soulful record. It’s got folk things there but also influences like Shuggie Otis and Curtis Mayfield. I really enjoyed making it.”

Tell Me A Tale, I Need Your Company and Worry Walks Beside Me are timeless songs that could only have come from Britain in 2011. Real, raw and achingly beautiful, they are just a taste of what is to come.

Michael Kiwanuka Videos

  • Michael Kiwanuka - Love & Hate - YouTube
  • Michael Kiwanuka - Cold Little Heart - YouTube
  • WLT - Michael Kiwanuka - I'm Getting Ready - YouTube

FAQs on booking Michael Kiwanuka

  • How to book Michael Kiwanuka?

    Our booking agents have successfully helped clients around the world secure talent like Michael Kiwanuka for speaking engagements, personal appearances, product endorsements, or corporate entertainment for over 15 years. The team at All American Entertainment represents and listens to the needs of organizations and corporations seeking to hire keynote speakers, celebrities or entertainers. Fill out a booking request form for Michael Kiwanuka, or call our office at 1.800.698.2536 to discuss your upcoming event. One of our experienced agents will be happy to help you get pricing information and check availability for Michael Kiwanuka or any other celebrity of your choice.
  • How much does it cost to book Michael Kiwanuka?

    Booking fees for Michael Kiwanuka, or any other speakers and celebrities, are determined based on a number of factors and may change without notice. Pricing often varies according to the circumstances, including the talent's schedule, market conditions, length of presentation, and the location of the event. Speaker fees listed on this website are intended to serve as a guideline only. In some cases, the actual quote may be above or below the stated range. For the most current fee to hire Michael Kiwanuka, please fill out the booking request form or call our office at 1.800.698.2536 to speak with an experienced booking agent.
  • Who is the agent for Michael Kiwanuka?

    All American Entertainment has successfully secured celebrity talent like Michael Kiwanuka for clients worldwide for more than 15 years. As a full-service talent booking agency, we have access to virtually any speaker or celebrity in the world. Our agents are happy and able to submit an offer to the speaker or celebrity of your choice, letting you benefit from our reputation and long-standing relationships in the industry. Fill out the booking request form or call our office at 1.800.698.2536, and one of our agents will assist you to book Michael Kiwanuka for your next private or corporate function.
  • What is a full-service talent booking agency?

    All American Speakers is a "buyers agent" and exclusively represents talent buyers, meeting planners and event professionals, who are looking to secure celebrities and speakers for personal appearances, speaking engagements, corporate entertainment, public relations campaigns, commercials, or endorsements. We do not exclusively represent Michael Kiwanuka or claim ourselves as the exclusive booking agency, business manager, publicist, speakers bureau or management for Michael Kiwanuka or any other speaker or celebrity on this website. For more information on how we work and what makes us unique, please read the AAE Advantage.

Michael Kiwanuka is a keynote speaker and industry expert who speaks on a wide range of topics . The estimated speaking fee range to book Michael Kiwanuka for your event is $20,000 - $30,000. Michael Kiwanuka generally travels from LondonUK and can be booked for (private) corporate events, personal appearances, keynote speeches, or other performances. Similar motivational celebrity speakers are Drake White, Ruth B, Sawyer Fredericks, Chris Mann and Chris Thile. Contact All American Speakers for ratings, reviews, videos and information on scheduling Michael Kiwanuka for an upcoming event.

Michael Kiwanuka Speaker Videos

  • Michael Kiwanuka - Love & Hate - YouTube
    Michael Kiwanuka - Cold Little Heart - YouTube
  • WLT - Michael Kiwanuka - I'm Getting Ready - YouTube
    Michael Kiwanuka - Home Again - YouTube

Tell us about your event!

During normal business hours, we respond to most inquiries within 4 hours.

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Speakers Similar to Michael Kiwanuka

This website is a resource for event professionals and strives to provide the most comprehensive catalog of thought leaders and industry experts to consider for speaking engagements. A listing or profile on this website does not imply an agency affiliation or endorsement by the talent.

All American Entertainment (AAE) exclusively represents the interests of talent buyers, and does not claim to be the agency or management for any speaker or artist on this site. AAE is a talent booking agency for paid events only. We do not handle requests for donation of time or media requests for interviews, and cannot provide celebrity contact information.

If you are the talent, and wish to request removal from this catalog or report an issue with your profile, please click here.

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