londoner kwaku asante bares his soul on “worth”

October 11, 2018
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Twenty-three-year-old Londoner Kwaku Asante has the voice of an angel who recognizes he’s a sinner. This kinda makes sense for a singer whose youthful vocal experiences moved between the hymnal Catholic choir and a swinging youth group that performed Frank Sinatra tunes, which he described as a “fun choir” to Worldwide FM. Heaven and Hell — so near and so far, but both alive in Asante’s voice, are present in his new single, “Worth.”

Co-produced by long-time musical colleague Tom Maudie (aka Mom Tudie) and Luke Reedman, “Worth” is a piano ballad about upliftment, with Asante testifying to the spirit of a person (parent? lover?) who believed in him enough to help him throw off the chains that bound, and freeing him up to love. It’s undoubtedly a spiritual, the song’s musical rise moving in the same direction gospel choirs do when they’re making a point: up. Yet the theme bore by the song-title — “worthy,” “unworthy” and the repeated chorus refrain, “Babe you don’t know your worth” — carries a more loaded darkness.

As with all the best art, “Worth” ain’t easy, but it is one more track that showcases Kwaku Asante as an exciting (unsigned) singing talent in South London. Watch his space. (And that of his friend, the water colorist TJ Agbo, who does all of Kwaku’s art.)