Pa Salieu wins BBC Music Sound of 2021 poll

  • Bang Showbiz
  • 7 January 2021
Pa Salieu (c) Zek Snaps

Pa Salieu (c) Zek Snaps

Rapper Pa Salieu is the recipient of the prestigious BBC Music Sound of Poll 2021

Pa Salieu has been crowned the winner of the BBC Music Sound of 2021 poll.

The 22-year-old rapper – who received widespread praise for his debut mixtape, ‘Send Them To Coventry’ – has followed in the footsteps of the likes of Adele, Sam Smith and Haim in being handed the accolade.

He told the BBC: “2020’s been sick. It’s just been a year of taking life in. I’m excited for next year and what’s to come, and 2020 has given me the chance to see the light. The light’s there but I’m still in that tunnel.”

The 'Block Boy' star – whose debut single 'Frontline' was the most played track of 2020 on BBC 1Xtra – beat off stiff competition from the likes of Holly Humberstone, Alfie Templeman, Bree Runway, Griff, and more.

BBC Radio 1 DJ Annie Mac was among those who decided the shortlist and winner and the broadcaster heaped praise on Pa for his powerful storytelling.

She said: “His songs are exquisitely produced, with enough restraint for Pa’s voice to shine through and have the space to tell the stories of his life.

“They are stories of friendship and family, of violence, exclusion and racism, and they act as timeless evidence of British street life at the turn of new decade.”

Last year’s winner, Celeste, has gone on to achieve major success.

As well as her BBC Sound of win, the 26-year-old ’Stop This Flame’ hitmaker won the Rising Star Award at the BRITs.

More recently, Celeste became the first musician to write and perform an original song for the John Lewis Christmas advert, 'A Little Love’, and she’ll release her debut studio album, ‘Not Your Muse’, later this month.

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