Ezra Collective has clinched the prestigious 2023 Mercury Prize, marking a historic moment as they become the first-ever jazz act to claim this coveted award. Their journey to victory was fueled by their remarkable November 2022 album, “Where I’m Meant to Be,” a jazz masterpiece that skillfully weaves in elements from genres as diverse as salsa and grime.
As the applause and cheers resounded through the venue, drummer Femi Koleoso stepped up to the mic to express the significance of this triumph. He declared, “This is not merely a victory for Ezra Collective, nor is it solely a triumph for UK jazz; this is a pivotal moment for every institution across the nation that has tirelessly nurtured and supported young musicians on their musical odyssey.”
The 2023 Mercury Prize ceremony unfolded at the illustrious Hammersmith Apollo in London on a memorable Thursday evening, September 7th. Ezra Collective managed to outshine a formidable lineup of nominees, which included iconic names like the Arctic Monkeys, the innovative Fred Again.., the trailblazing J Hus, the enigmatic Shygirl, the avant-garde Jockstrap, the soulful Jessie Ware, the mesmerizing Raye, and more. Notably, it was just last year that the Mercury Prize was awarded to the talented rapper Little Simz for her exceptional album, “Sometimes I Might Be Introvert.”
This remarkable achievement by Ezra Collective not only underscores the richness and diversity of the contemporary music scene but also serves as a beacon of inspiration for aspiring young musicians and underscores the importance of supporting and fostering emerging talent in the music industry.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Mercury Prize 2023
What is the Mercury Prize, and why is Ezra Collective’s win significant?
The Mercury Prize is a prestigious music award recognizing outstanding albums released by British and Irish artists. Ezra Collective’s 2023 win is groundbreaking as they are the first jazz act ever to receive this honor. Their album, “Where I’m Meant to Be,” blends jazz with genres like salsa and grime, showcasing the versatility of contemporary music.
Who are Ezra Collective?
Ezra Collective is a London-based quintet known for their innovative approach to jazz music. They’ve gained acclaim for their unique fusion of jazz with diverse musical influences, making them a standout force in the modern music scene.
What did Femi Koleoso mean by “a special moment for every single organization”?
Drummer Femi Koleoso’s statement highlights that their win isn’t just about the band but also acknowledges the collective efforts of institutions across the UK that support and nurture young musicians. It underscores the importance of these organizations in shaping the future of music.
Who were the other nominees for the 2023 Mercury Prize?
The 2023 Mercury Prize shortlist featured notable artists like the Arctic Monkeys, Fred Again.., J Hus, Shygirl, Jockstrap, Jessie Ware, Raye, and more. Despite fierce competition, Ezra Collective emerged as the victors.
How does this win impact the music industry?
Ezra Collective’s win serves as a symbol of the rich diversity and innovation within contemporary music. It provides inspiration to young musicians and emphasizes the value of supporting emerging talent in the music industry.