And just like that, UK Black music is popular again in the mainstream, especially the previously forgotten genres like UK rap and grime. One could legitimately argue the resurgence of grime is down one man, Stormzy.
Only a few would disagree that Stormzy’s impact on the UK Music industry hasn’t been epic. From his self directed YouTube videos, winning a BET award and not forgetting #WickedSkengMan freestyle landing in the Top 20 of the national single charts! The subsequent cosigns have come from all over the grime scene including the inventor of grime, Wiley. And earlier this month at the 2015 MOBO awards ceremony Stormzy walked away with the Best Male and Best Grime act to add to his Best Grime act at last years ceremony.
Over the past 12 months we’ve seen Stormzy appear on stage with Kanye West at The Brits, perform ‘Not that deep‘ on Later with Jools Holland, rock Wireless Festival, open BBC 1xtra grime symphony with a ground breaking performance…and complete yet another sold out UK tour that included 1400 people packed at London’s Koko.
This summer saw Stormzy release various songs on soundcloud that may not have appealed to his hardcore fans, namely songs such as (You’re like), but Stormzy still profited by cultivating additional female fans from it.
Earlier today a further indication of Stormzy continued success came from the announcement that he will become the latest artist to join the crew at Apple Music’s Beats 1 station. His new show #MERKY will start on November 20th at 8:00pm GMT and continue weekly every Friday night.
“I am so, so gassed to be joining the Beats 1 family. It’s a chance for me to show 100+ countries about the scene that I come from, the music I like and the artists I rate,” said Stormzy.
Even with significant success, Stormzy has bucked the trend and remains unsigned in the midst of the predictable major label offers. The 22 year old MC has independently garnered a massive mainstream following whilst maintaining kudos with the underground grime scene.
Written by Christabel Phillips