Which album deserves the Mercury Prize 2017?
Just like last year two artist from the UK urban scene are nominated for the prestigious Mercury Prize. Last year it was Kano & Winner Skepta but this year our representatives are Stormzy with "GSAP" & J Hus With "Common Sense"
Now both are great albums. Both did well commercially and critically. "GSAP" has a Metacritic score of 83 while "Common Sense" has a score of 85 resulting in the score of universal acclaim.
Chart wise Stormzy has the honour of having the first #1 Grime album while J Hus charted a respectable #6 "Did You See", peaked at number 9 so far on the UK Singles Chart, becoming J Hus' highest-charting single while "Big For Your Boots" peaked at number six on the UK Singles Chart, becoming Stormzy's highest-charting solo single.
I feel "Common Sense" is the better album with combination of Hip-Hop,Bashment,Afrobeats & house but "GSAP" had the bigger impact with its chart success while being independently released. Both are gonna be footnotes in UK music history and both deserve the honor but only one can win.
I honestly hope J Hus wins but a Stormzy victory is also a cause to celebrate.
The next Hip-Hop biopic should be on the Wu-Tang Clan. As a Netflix series.
In my opinion the Wu-Tang Clan are the greatest Hip-Hop group of all time. I would say the first group of their kind to have multiple personalities that worked in perfect unison creating hardcore music that was also beautiful to hear.
Being part of the NY renaissance when West Coast Hip-Hop was controlling the airways. The Wu were more than a breath of fresh air but a new light to the culture. In a group of friends everyone would have a different favourite member.
Many other groups can't say the same.
Why I want a Netflix series instead of a movie release is because
1. It'll give more time to flesh out the Huge cast.
2. More creative control.
3. More likely to be a rated R like the Marvel Netflix series.
4.Able to tell more stories and plots
If this does happen I hope they cast unknown actors like they did for "Straight Outta Compton" giving new actors a chance to showcase their talent with portraying some legendary figures in Hip-Hop history.
I'll love to see how Ghostface & Reakwon met, Or when Method Man finally became the lovable stoner or when ODB found his unique voice. This could be a very in depth hood drama on levels like the stars series "Power"
With the group having some many powerful personalities obviously it was all plan sailing for Killer Bee's. We could see how they handle the fame, how they juggled the life in the block with a music career. There are hidden gems that many Hip-Hop fans would love to discover. This series could be a beginning to a rebirth of the Wu-Tang brand .
Also with many of the group still alive we can get more authentic accounts on their careers. I'm not positive if it'll happen but I feel this could be a new bench mark for Hip-Hop content.
Long live the Wu.
Is Cbiz apart of the UK Rap elite?
The UK music scene was gripped by the Cbiz murder trial. It was almost our version of when Snoop Dogg was on trial, it was that intense for the scene.
Biz was found not guilty but I would be lying if I didn't believe his buzz has died down a little. His rivals Nines has a top 5 albums debut & Fredo is being built up as the best UK Rap newcomer for 2017. So where does Cbiz fit in the UK Rap elite.
Well he does have a new generation classic with "The Game is mine" released over a year ago. When that song drops it's gets a enormous reaction. "Money March" also caused waves when released last year. 2016 was a star making year for Biz.
He has one of the most recognisable flows in the scene and I believe he has mastered the use of adlibs. Tell me you don't feel like a G when you repeat his adlibs when his songs come on.
In 2017 now things haven't been amazing, not saying bad but from the previous year he had its a step down. He released "Buzz" as his return to the game after he was found not guilty, causing a stir over a certain line in the song allegedly directed at Nines.
Other than that his over releases haven't got the reception of his 2016 run which is a shame.
UK Rap is very competitive now since many artist are reaching their commercial and artistic peaks.
I'm not sure if it's because people are bored of the Cbiz formula or new acts have taken his spot.
He's still far from unknown and his £R (ER) label artist have consistently gained hundreds of thousands of views on their releases. Maybe it's just a down period but anything can happen in music.
Who remembers when @pink did RnB?
In the early 2000 the one female singer I remember mostly played in my mum's car was P!NK.
A very beautiful & talented young woman who was singing anthems for the women of that new generation. My mother being one of them.
Her debut single "There You Go" song peaked at number seven on the Billboard Hot 100 and number six on the UK Singles Chart. While remarkably similar to previous for Destiny's Child ('Bills, Bills, Bills') and TLC ('No Scrubs') I still loved her take on the sound.
She brought an edge that many other female singers before her couldn't naturally showcase. Bringing the emotions of a troubled soul in a bad relationship but was far from weak and willing to stand up for her self. The production by Kevin "She'kspere" Briggs was very fitting to the vibe and P!NK did not disappoint.
My favourite song I'll have to say is "Most Girls" Wow. I had no shame dancing to this single, it still bangs. Produced by the legendary "Babyface" bringing a true 90's RnB flavour that is truly missed in this era was a beautiful combination with P!NK vocals.
For many fans of 2000's Rnb who thought many of the singers were soft or fake P!NK was a perfect alternative. It is a shame that she later went on to admit that during the period of promoting the album "Can't take me home" she felt stifled, as it was not reflective of her true musical ambitions and moves towards a rock influence.
Going on to sell over 42 million albums worldwide,including over 16 million albums in the United States. Her career accolades include three Grammy Awards, a Brit Award, a Daytime Emmy Award and six MTV Video Music Awards. Her new direction worked in her favour and brought great music for her fanbase. Giving pop-rock some backbone!
Still her brief time in RnB shouldn't be forgotten, she has some classics from one album that many Singers spend their whole careers never achieving.
Can't keep this woman in a box. A very underrated talent.
@thebugzymalone has proven himself to be the King Of The North & maybe soon the King Of The Scene.
If you like him or hate him you have to respect what Bugzy has accomplished.
I wrote previously that Bugzys new release can cement himself as one of the top rappers on the scene. Now I feel l was completely correct.
With his latest ep "King Of The North" charting number 4 Bugzy is one of the best independent artist of his era with all his 3 EP's charting in the top 10.
His singles may not necessarily chart high but his projects are highly supported by his fan's. Further proving that Bugzy is among the elite of UK rappers.
An excellent Storyteller with a gritty back story the talent showcased with these EP's makes me more anxious to hear his debut album. I'll also wager that it will chart in the top 3 if it's promoted well enough.
It's been a excellent year for UK hip-hop & grime music. Stormzy,Nines,J Hus,Wiley,Tinie Tempah all charting in the UK Album top 10. Bugzy is a mainstream artist with no mainstream exposure which is a testament on how he has maneuvered in this industry.
Many were skeptical on his working relationship with Charlie Sloth but he's firmly stepped out his show and is becoming his own powerhouse. With the scene looking so healthy we are in a age where we don't have a king but Kings.
Gaining a million views easy on each release his entering his artistic prime. With a sold fan base behind him, His brand steadily improving, using his independent status to its advantage it's all looking to be a promising 2017 and beyond from the guy that put Manny On The Map.
Now Bugzy is one of the Kings of the scene. Time will tell if he will be the most powerful ruler out of them all.
@official_jae5 is the MVP producer in UK music right now
@theuglygram Debut album "Common Sense" was a commercial & critical Success but I feel not enough credit has been given to JAE5.
The producer from East London is the most versatile beat maker I've heard this year. He has showcased his talent to craft different genre's of music with ease from Afrobeats to Bashment to House & UK hip-hop. With a undeniable high quality that only some producer's can match.
He reminds me of Timberland & The Neptune's on how he can craft different sounds. I would love for him to do a DJ Khaled style album with production handled only by him. "Common Sense" reminds me of Drake's "More Life" but was executed so much better. The backdrops given to Hus weren't half hearted attempts at different sounds but we're tailored made for him and it shows in the quality.
I could see him producing a number one single and getting major placements next year. You wouldn't think "Bouff Daddy" "Clartin" "Plottin" "Did You See" were created by one person. The industry needs to wake up to this guy's talent.
He's a songwriters dream to work with. Even many American producers can't hold a candle to his talent right now. They may have a bigger platform that brings bigger accolades but with his output he is Grammy award nomination level, even winning.
@officialgiggs called the album a instant classic so the man behind the boards must also be seen as a top tier producer in the scene because without him this quality isn't achieved. It's just common sense 😉
Is @tinchystryder a grime legend?
Tinchy Stryder is a grime veteran. You can make the case he was there from the near beginning. Doing radio sets with Wiley and Dizzee.
At only 29 Stryder has maybe 20 years experience in this industry. Supposedly performing since 1997. But what is his legacy?
Well you can make the case that after Dizzee & Kano he was grimes next superstar. In 2008 with the release of "Stryderman" His lead single off his second studuo album "Catch 22" you couldn't escape him. From this single getting constant radio play and TV music stations he was on the verge of mainstream popularity.
Then Tinchy collaborated with N-Dubz for the smash hit "Number 1" now I wouldn't say I'm a massive fan of this single but I can see why this was a hit. "Number 1" is the first song in chart history anywhere in the world entitled "Number 1" ever to actually reach #1 .
Tinchy I'll say became Grimes first popstar. Delivering radio friendly songs that can be played on morning radio & Saturday morning kids tv.
His next album "Third Strike" wasn't as well received as his last. "Catch 22" charted #2 but "Third Strike" charted at 48. That's a devastating drop but I always wondered why.
Doing research in 2010 many new UK rappers were gaining mainstream exposure. Professor Green dropped "Alive Till I'm Dead" (2010) #2 Tinie Tempah dropped Alive Till I'm Dead (2010) #1 Devlin was on the mainstream rise and Example was mixing house with UK making a killing on the dance scene. Tinchy had seem to lose his place in mainstream music.
The only defining moment from the album was "Game Over" The song features vocals from Example, Giggs, Devlin, Chipmunk, Professor Green and Tinie Tempah. It was the first Grime posses cut to get some mainstream exposure and it was the instrumental of the year produced by iSHi
Many grime fans put his career down because of his pop success. Maybe also because he doesn't have many universal loved grime moments, something impactfull he did for the scene. but being apart of Ruff Squad and killing radio sets from early grime days & his business success. You can't discount him
UK Hip-Hop & Grime needs new major label pop stars.
Now I know this sounds insane but hear me out.
With many of the scenes superstars independent we now have a hold over that lane. We must admit though there is a limit on what artist can do without a label.
Now I'm not a supporter of artist signing to labels but what makes the USA urban scene so diverse Is that you got many different artist on different paths & levels expanding the culture forward.
Also many artist on industry labels have connections that can help independent artist without being on a label. Look at Chance The Rappers success, an independent titian who's undoubtedly has connections with many other rappers who have labels that I'm sure benefited his career.
Imagine if peak Tinie Tempah who was King of the UK mainstream and Stormzy who is the new king of the UK mainstream were around at the same time. It would give Urban music a monopoly over the charts,online media and clubs.
No other music genres is played more in clubs than urban music, Independent artist are rarely Shown on the top singles charts. With more authentic major labels acts that could change.
One of the reasons for the decline of UK urban music was everyone tried to fit in one lane. We can not let that happen again. More pop acts would be a beneficial change as long it doesn't get other crowded.
Having artist that control the pop charts, the underground, the clubs, online & the critics will give the culture a better foundation.
Imagine a world tour & the headliner was the new Grime/Hip-Hop popstar & the supporting acts were underground and independent acts who are at his same level also but don't have the exposure or funding to do a tour of that scale. It could be magic.
There is nothing wrong doing pop music, it's the way you just approach it.