New Voices 2021 Q&A: Yohan Kebede

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To celebrate the selection of this year’s New Voices cohort, we caught up with all the selected artists and composers for a quick chat.

Here, we speak to New Voices 2021 composer Yohan Kebede. Yohan is pianist and composer from North West London. He plays as ⅛ of the band KOKOROKO, with whom he has performed at events and venues including the BBC Proms, Glastonbury, Jazz a Vienne, Bacardi Weekender in India & Sim Sau Paulo.

Can you tell us about your musical influences?

I’m really into artists who champion the use of analogue synthesis, like Brian Eno and Yellow Magic Orchestra. As a pianist, I’ve learned loads from pioneers like Errol Garner & Herbie Hancock, in addition to soulful songwriters like Leon Ware & Stevie Wonder. I’m a massive fan of contemporary artists like Tyler The Creator & Brandon Coleman, whom I hope to work with one day.

What are you working on at the moment?

I am currently working on the next Kokoroko album, & my own record which I hope to release sometime next year.

What are you looking forward to most about New Voices?

I’m looking forward to exploring my personality as a composer. It’s a side of me which I’d say is still somewhat foreign to me, I’ve never had much opportunity to explore my compositional personality in depth, but with New Voices this will no doubt change.

Sound and Music gratefully acknowledges support from PRS Foundation as a Talent Development Partner:

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