Critically acclaimed, American jazz singer-songwriter Gregory Porter has become the first MOBO Award winner of 2017, taking home the MOBO Outstanding Contribution to Music Award last night in front of an intimate audience at London’s Gresham Centre.
Gregory Porter said, “I am truly privileged to receive the Outstanding Contribution to Music Award from the MOBOs. It is a great honour and I would like to thank everyone who has supported me in my career so far. Nat King Cole was my earliest musical inspiration so it seems fitting that I dedicate this award to him.”
Widely recognised as one of this generation’s best male jazz vocalists, the California-born singer and adopted British national treasure has released five studio albums – three of which have been UK Top 10 hits. He won Grammy Awards for Best Jazz Vocal Album for 2013’s Liquid Spirit as well as his critically lauded album Take Me To The Alley, which became the first jazz record to break into the UK Top 5 in over 10 years in 2016.
Porter’s latest album Nat “King” Cole & Me is his highest charting success yet – debuting at No.3 on the UK Album Charts last week to become his third consecutive Top 10 smash in the UK. He was also announced as the biggest selling jazz artist of 2017.
He soon launches his new BBC Four TV series Gregory Porter’s Popular Voices with the first episode airing on Friday 17 November and focusing on his favourite vocal showstoppers, celebrating Ella Fitzgerald, Mahalia Jackson, Freddie Mercury, Prince, Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey and featuring conversations with artists including Dave Grohl, Beck and Adam Lambert.
Ever since his debut in 2010, Porter has attracted a loyal and diverse range of admirers from the late Sir Terry Wogan to Disclosure, who collaborated with the singer on their 2015 chart-topping dance hit ‘Holding On’.
The third annual Pre-MOBO Awards Show will be held in London on Monday 20 November. The red carpet gala event, hosted by YolanDa Brown and China Moses, will be taking place at Boisdale, Canary Wharf, this year. A limited amount of tickets are now on sale through the Boisdale website. Ticket price includes a three-course meal. To book, please visit:.
World-class performers confirmed to perform on the night include: neo-soul singer Floacist (one-half of Grammy-nominated duo Floetry), reggae artist Kiko Bun, award-winning French jazz pianist Tony Tixier, jazz/soul singer Zara McFarlane (who won Best Jazz Act in the 2014 MOBO Awards), R&B/soul singer Rachel Kerr (former MOBO Award winner for Best Gospel Act) and soul singer Josh Daniel (who appeared on the 2015 X Factor).
Rapidly establishing itself as one of the most eagerly anticipated nights in the calendar for fans of R&B, soul, jazz, blues, gospel music and reggae – The Pre-MOBO Awards Show, last year hosted by Lemar and China Moses, saw unforgettable performances by Ayanna Witter Johnson, Bill Laurance & Mike Aremu, Rumer, Guvna B, Moelogo, Temi Dollface, Volney Morgan & New Ye, and Shaun Escoffery. Highlights include Grammy Award-winning soul music legend Maxwell presenting the Best R&B/Soul Act award to Shakka.
The inaugural event in 2015 saw legendary artists like Courtney Pine, Mica Paris and Omar taking the stage. It is, quite unmistakably, an unmissable night for music lovers.
Winners for the 2017 MOBO Awards for Best R&B/Soul, Best Jazz, Best Gospel and Best Reggae acts will be announced in the evening.