Kate Tempest ‘can’t compare’ Mercury Prize nomination to 2013 Ted Hughes Award win

Rapper says that "Music and poetry awards satisfy different parts of my personality"

Kate Tempest has admitted she is struggling to compare her Mercury Prize nomination with her win at 2013’s Ted Hughes Award for poetry, which the rapper/poet/novelist won for her poem ‘Brand New Ancients’.

Tempest is the 4/1 second-favourite for the Mercury Prize for her debut album ‘Everybody Down’ and will release her first novel The Bricks That Built The Houses via Bloomsbury Publishing in April 2015.

Speaking to NME at the announcement of this year’s Mercury prize nominees, Tempest was asked whether it would mean more to win the Mercury Prize, the Ted Hughes Award or the Man Booker prize for novels. She said: “They’re all very different awards that satisfy different parts of my personality. I don’t know.”

Tempest paid tribute to her producer Dan Carey, who also produced fellow nominee Nick Mulvey’s album ‘First Mind’. Of her plans to spend the £20,000 prize money if she won, Tempest said: “I’ll buy some more studio sessions with Dan Carey to pay him back. I’d better not say on camera how I’ll celebrate if I win.”

Paying tribute to fellow nominees and Big Dada labelmates Young Fathers, Tempest said she would be happy if they won the Barclaycard Mercury Prize instead of her. She said: “I literally love them. They’re astonishing, brave, raw, delicate, powerful, genuine. They mean it.”

Tempest said she felt “elation, fear and pride” over her nomination. She said: “It’s a very special moment for me and Dan, as we started this thing together. I remember the minute we started – the first lyrics and the first notes – so to go from there to here is amazing. The overwhelming feeling was a rush; ‘Damn, it’s done’. The shortlist is a really high standard. It’s all really serious, so I’m pleased as punch to be on the list.”

But Tempest said she won’t place a bet on herself to win the prize. She said: “My odds sound quite good, but I don’t know much about gambling.”

The winner of the Barclaycard Mercury Prize is announced on October 29 at London’s Roundhouse.
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