Facebook R&B crooner Mario has been relatively quiet on the music front for…
- Posted on Sep 9th 2009 4:49AM by Stephen Dowling
The winner of the 2009 award was south London rapper Speech Debelle, whose debut album 'Speech Therapy' beat favourites such as Florence and the Machine, Glasvegas and Kasabian to take the £20,000 (US$32,950) prize.
At an awards ceremony in London, the 26-year-old rapper said her win showed "if you believe in something and you think you can do it, you can".
Debelle's album was an outside bet ahead of Tuesday's awards, with odds of 33-1. Florence and the Machine's debut 'Lungs' was the favourite with odds of 5/2. Before her Mercury win, Debelle's album had only sold 3,000 copies.
"There's a lot of music that sounds the same, all day on the radio," she said after accepting the prize. "Hopefully people will hear this album and realise they don't have to make music that sounds the same -- they can make music that sounds good."
Other albums included in the 12-strong shortlist included Bat For Lashes' 'Two Suns', the Horrors' 'Primary Colours and La Roux's 'La Roux'.
Judge Jude Rodgers praised the record, saying: "It does present a real freshness and individuality. The thing I love about this record is that it is a rap record which doesn't sound like a rap record. It brings in many influences from jazz, folk, blues, even old TV soundtrack music. It's very British, which I think is wonderful."
The Mercury Music Prize, open to any album made by British or Irish artists, has previously honoured records such as Primal Scream's "Screamadelica' (1992), Badly Drawn Boy's 'The Hour of Bewilderbeast' (2000) and Elbow's 'The Seldom Seen Kid' (2008?). The winner traditionally sees a massive upsurge in record sales.