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Pierre Kwenders in the video for "Heartbeat"

Pierre Kwenders announced as 2022 Polaris Music Prize winner

20 September 2022, 10:02 | Written by Cerys Kenneally

Pierre Kwenders' José Louis And The Paradox Of Love album has been named the winner of the 2022 Polaris Music Prize after being shortlisted alongside records by Destroyer, Charlotte Day Wilson, Ouri and more.

José Louis And The Paradox Of Love was released in April as the third album from the Congolese-born, Montreal-based singer/songwriter and DJ, and has been named the Canadian album of the year after previous winners Cadence Weapon, Backxwash, Haviah Mighty, Jeremy Dutcher, Lido Pimienta, Kaytranada and more. Kwenders also won a $50,000 prize.

Kwenders, who previously made the 2018 Polaris Music Prize shortlist in 2018 with MAKANDA at the End of Space, the Beginning of Time, said, "This is crazy, I don’t even know what to think. This is for all the kids from the diaspora, the African diaspora, moving in Canada. Sometimes you feel like you don’t know what you’re running into, or what you’re coming into. But there is hope, there is a place to live and dream and be yourself. This album, especially, is about being yourself and telling your own story. José Louis And The Paradox Of Love is there for you, you know, if you feel you can connect, connect! Let’s talk! Let’s have fun! Let’s be ourselves! Let’s love each other, while we are alive. Bisou!"

The other shortlisted nominees including Destroyer, Charlotte Day Wilson, Ouri and more, received $3,000 from Slaight Music.

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