Stories » Sheku Kanneh-Mason counts Bob Marley and Mstislav Rostropovich among his idols / NPR

Top 10 for Feb

Sheku Kanneh-Mason counts Bob Marley and Mstislav Rostropovich among his idols / NPR

Bookmark and Share

Sheku Kanneh-Mason, who counts Bob Marley and Mstislav Rostropovich among his idols, is a young man on the move. The British cellist, still a teenager, won the BBC Young Musician of the Year Award in 2016; he's just released his major label debut, featuring his rendition of Bob Marley's "No Woman, No Cry," which has been quietly racking up YouTube views and Spotify hits.

Music flows deep in Kanneh-Mason's family. He has six siblings, all of whom are musicians. They wowed the audience at Britain's Got Talent in 2015 with a mashup of classical and popular numbers.

Kanneh-Mason's new album, Inspiration, is also a mix of chestnuts and pop. Along with Marley's "No Woman" and Saint-Saens' "The Swan," there's an arrangement of Leonard Cohen's ubiquitous "Hallelujah." But the centerpiece of the album is his performance of the demanding Cello Concerto No. 1 by Dmitri Shostakovich, the very piece that earned Kanneh-Mason the BBC award. A reviewer in the London Times noted, in a subsequent performance, that the young cellist offered "urgency and bite" and "impeccable technique."

READ Tom Huizenga's FULL ARTICLE