George the Poet
Spoken word performer influencing a new generation
This article is from 2015.
A lot has changed for 24-year-old George Mpanga in the past year. Not long after graduating from Cambridge University he was placed fifth on the BBC's Sound of 2015 list, has been making music with the likes of Paolo Nutini, Emeli Sandé and Idris Elba, and been working as an adviser for the BBC Diversity Trust. His music oozes experience, discussing social enterprise, sharing views on better education, ‘the housing prices which are now in crisis’, and decent wages. This artist knows exactly what impact words can have, previously stating that ‘rappers have so much power to do good’.
We're intrigued by the wordsmith's appearance in the capital this month as he comes to spread the word about a new project – his first book Search Party. The title of this autobiographical poetry collection comes from the idea that ‘we're all here looking for something, and my poems are my way of finding myself’, Mpanga says. With themes about empowerment and representation, Mpanga instils hope, promising us we're gonna see some changes.
To quote the words of George himself, ‘if you're in any way interested in the future of the world you've invested in’ go see this inspirational man who seems to genuinely have the power to influence and bring people together. Erm – George The Poet for prime minister, anyone?
Charlotte Square Gardens, 0845 373 5888, 21 Aug, 9.15pm, £10 (£8).