Sampha won the 2017 Hyundai Mercury Prize on Thursday night for his debut studio album, Process. Honoring the best UK album of the past year, the Mercury Prize ceremony was held at London’s Eventim Apollo, where he was awarded £25,000 (around $35,500).
Sampha, who has collaborated with a host of high profile artists (including contributions to Kanye West’s “Saint Pablo,” Solange’s “Don’t Touch My Hair,” Frank Ocean’s “Alabama” and Drake’s “Too Much” among many others), released his critically acclaimed Process in February. He performed Process single “(No One Knows Me) Like the Piano” during the ceremony.
“I want to leave music that some kid is going to find and put on some headphones and [it will] just transport them, like I was when I was into records,” Sampha told Rolling Stone earlier this year while discussing his solo debut.
The singer-producer’s Process bested 11 other artists’ albums that were nominated for this year’s prize, including Ed Sheeran’s Divide, the xx’s I See You and Alt-J’s Relaxer.
“I’d like to dedicate this award to my parents … they came over from Sierra Leone and just wanted to give us the best upbringing possible,” he said during his touching acceptance speech. He also thanked his four brothers “for always giving me encouragement and making me believe in myself.”