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"British black music today is in need of real confidence injection, because with confidence comes money..."

British black music today is in need of real confidence injection, because with confidence comes money. Right now, it’s not great. It’s not that the talent is not there, of course the talent is there. It’s always been there, but nobody is hearing it. And I mean the whole black experience of music, from what the kids are doing with the grime, and all of that the hip-hop, all the way through to the more pop areas, like Jamelia. It’s in a hard state of affairs now.

Sometimes I feel like I’m an island - there’s me by myself in the position I’m in, making music as a black music artist, and I look around and I don’t see anybody who’s been doing it as long as me or having the same kind of success, aside from Lemar. That’s it, and it breaks my heart if you want the truth.

I think of Terri Walker. I think of Shaun Escoffery, Shola Ama. Particularly with Shola, she had such a high profile career and now that’s disappeared. She’s still making music, but who’s hearing it? Not enough. I just think to myself you’ve got all these artists, but who is hearing it? So I just think to myself there are all these other artists doing really well from America and that. You’ve got white artists over here doing well, but what’s going on with black Britain? We’re not vocal enough in black British music - it’s like spot the black. It’s crazy.

Click to read Beverley Knight's interview: Beverley Knight Goes Back To Her Roots With 'Music City Soul'

 

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