Little Simz is the winner of Britain’s Mercury Prize this year, earning the honor thanks to her fourth studio album Sometimes I Might Be Introvert. With fierce competition, the album beat out a shortlist that included chart-topping LPs from Harry Styles, Wet Leg, and Sam Fender.
With her victory, Simz gets a cash prize of £25,000 ($28,000), trophy, and exposure that could potentially launch her record back onto the U.K. charts. Sometimes I Might Be Introvert dropped in 2021 and originally peaked at #4 on the Official U.K. Albums Chart.
Born and raised in London, Little Simz (real name Simbiatu “Simbi” Abisola Abiola Ajikawo) saw her breakthrough in the industry with her 2010 debut mixtape, Stratosphere. More recently, the rapper won the Brit Award for Best New Act, and won the Ivor Novellos and MOBO Awards.
Speaking from the ceremony stage at Hammersmith’s Eventim Apollo on Tuesday (October 18), Simz admitted she was “very very overwhelmed” with her win. She paid tribute to all the other nominated records, saying, “We all made incredible albums, we all change people’s lives with our music and that’s the most important thing. So this is for us really.” In addition to taking home the big prize, Little Simz and other shortlisted artists performed during the 2022 ceremony, which was initially postponed when Queen Elizabeth II died.
The Mercury Prize was launched in 1992 to celebrate the best of British and Irish music across a range of contemporary music genres. It’s considered the music equivalent to the Booker Prize for literature and the Turner Prize for art. Previous winners include Pulp, Portishead, Arctic Monkeys, James Blake, and Arlo Parks, who took the prize last year for her album Collapsed in Sunbeams.
Listen to Little Simz's Mercury Prize acceptance speech below.
'We all change peoples lives with our music and that's the most important thing, so this is for us really.'— Mercury Prize (@MercuryPrize) October 18, 2022
The moment that @LittleSimz won the 2022 Mercury Prize with @FreeNow_UK for her album, 'Sometimes I Might Be Introvert' 🏆#MercuryPrize pic.twitter.com/7huXaIsr32
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