Mercury nominee discusses hip hop, inspiration, poetry and her novel
Andrew Trendell and Elliot Mitchell

16:47 11th September 2014

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Kate Tempest has spoken of her pride in being nominated for this year's Mercury Music Prize - adding that she hopes to give something back to the world of rap that has inspired her.

Watch our video interview with Kate Tempest above

Speaking to Gigwise backstage at the Mercury nominations announcement, Tempest said that she was 'extremely proud' and 'a bit overwhelmed' to be among such a 'strong list and strong culture of music making in the UK', after being shortlisted for her acclaimed album, Everbody Down.

"You never start out to make a piece of work with any kind of accolade or prize in mind," Tempest explained. "You make a piece of work because you make a piece of work. Dan [Carey, producer] and I made this album for each other -  but I'm not going to lie, it feels unbelievable because I've wanted to be a musician all my life."

She continued: "I'm sure a lot of rap fans wouldn't want me representing rap as a genre, I'm just doing my thing. I'm a huge hip-hop fan, I've got so much from the culture and I hope to give so much back to the culture that inspired me. I would love it if people got with the album and got what it was saying, but winning is just like...even if you just think about it, you're only going to end up getting yourself in a pickle. It's enough to just be here."

Everybody Down is said to be a sister project for her upcoming novel, The Bricks That Built The Houses - with each track correlating to a chapter in the book.

Speaking of the relationship between the album and novel, Tempest replied: "The album and the novel, they don't need each other. They exist hand in hand and side by side. The album works on its own without the novel existing, but I think that when it comes out, people who may or may not be avid fiction readers might get a kick out of, and people who read a lot of fiction but may don't listen to a lot of UK hip-hop records might get a kick out of listening to the album."

Issue Four of the Gigwise Print magazine is on pre-order now! Order here.

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