Words by Mr Tom M Ford
With his relaxed dress sense, velvet voice and elegant guitar work - it might be easy to file 21-year-old Mr Josh Kumra among the long lineage of music's pleasant but predictable singer-songwriters. Last year's No.1 smash hit "Don't Go" with UK rapper Wretch 32, however, represents the refreshingly urban slant this London-based troubadour embodies. "My music incorporates urban beats to give it an edge," says Mr Kumra when I catch up with him for a chat. "We're trying to continue bridging genres and keep the fans wanting more."
With his debut album due in September on RCA Sony (home to the likes of Beyoncé and Mr Justin Timberlake) - his heady mix of soul, hip-hop and grime is set to reach the masses. "We've got Australia, Canada and Germany all wanting to hear more from me - so that's great. But first thing, I really want to set some foundations in the UK."
Currently on tour in England, Mr Kumra's live sound is influenced by staple guitar aficionados such as Mr Jimi Hendrix, The Rolling Stones and Mr Eric Clapton, yet the humble artist steers clear of their sartorial flamboyance. "If I had the guts, I'd love to wear what they did. What I present on stage isn't far from what I do normally. I stick to stylish shirts and jeans, keep it casual, and let the music do all the talking."
If this is his philosophy in sound and style (and we think our video reflects this), Mr Kumra is certain to garner significant attention over the coming months - and for all the right reasons.
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Mr Josh Kumra