When Michael Kiwanuka decided to pursue music professionally, he thought that would mean becoming a teacher or a session musician. Instead, the British artist has released two albums and been nominated for a Mercury Prize twice. Listening to his songs, it is clear why so many people identify with the music of this unassuming 32-year-old: There is a sense of honesty and passion in every soaring note. For Kiwanuka, however, creating music is about more than just the final product. It’s about “being true to who you are, ” he says. It’s also about sharing with his audience in a way that goes deeper than albums and Instagram posts, which is why he released the short documentary Out Loud! last year, giving a glimpse into his life on tour and in live performances. “I just wanted to show people what I do in a creative and This story is from Kinfolk Issue Thirty-Three Buy Now Related Stories Music Issue 50 Caroline Polachek The slow burn superstar. Music Issue 49 Tove Lo The pop star reflects on the big feelings behind her biggest hits. Music Issue 46 Lil Silva A superstar collaborator steps into the spotlight. Music Issue 43 Cat Power Musician Chan Marshall opens the door to a different dimension. Music Issue 42 Fatima Al Qadiri The shape shifting star of contemporary electronica. Arts & Culture Films Music Issue 42 Peer Review Iranian artist and filmmaker Shirin Neshat pays homage to the iconic Egyptian singer Oum Kulthum.