On the breakout single from his 2016 record Love And Hate, Michael Kiwanuka declares "I'm a black man in a white world." He repeats the refrain over and over again, with crystal clarity. He's staking a claim at the very personal place where his music, color and identity intersect. And it's taken him a lifetime to get there.
Kiwanuka was raised in the U.K. by Ugandan refugees. ("I felt like I toed the line of nowhere," he says of his bicultural upbringing.) He's a Hendrix-head who loves folk-rock, but whom the music industry has always wanted to pigeonhole as a soul artist. In honor of Black History Month, we asked him to talk about his own history — and how it shaped "Black Man In A White World." Listen and download the complete conversation via the player above.