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London: 27 Year Old Nigerian Singer signed to Jay-Z Roc Nation

Rising star Jacob Banks says he wants to keep his feet on the ground and would rather hang out with his cats than attend showbiz parties.

The 27-year-old singer and songwriter was the first unsigned artist to play Radio 1’s Live Lounge and counts Sam Smith and Alicia Keys among his fans.

Now signed to Jay-Z’s Roc Nation and Polydor Records, he told A List: “My album came out last week and everyone wanted me to throw a party but I just don’t like parties. I stayed at home and played FIFA [on PlayStation 4].

“I did everything I usually do that makes me happy. I want to keep my feet on the ground.” He added: “I love animals — whenever I move house it has to be a ground-floor flat so my cats Prince and Puppy have proper space to live.”

Banks, right, who lives in London after growing up in Nigeria and Birmingham, called his album Village, after the African phrase “it takes a village to raise a child”. His father is a poultry farmer in Nigeria and his mother a nurse. He said: “I grew up around lots of animals and found the value of not having much.”

Although he has a degree in civil engineering, he says he would never now choose that as a career. He joked: “People would die — bridges would fall!”

Jacob Banks plays The Roundhouse in Camden on December 12

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