Grime emerged from a small part of East London: Bow. In the early part of the 2000’s Bow, other parts of London and black communities were subject to extreme economic depression. Forming from what may be best described as ‘street music’, grime was supported by DIY distribution and word of mouth as well as pirate radio stations. As an offshoot of UKG, grime was a lot rawer and the popularity of the MC led to the formation of several ‘crews’ that paved the way for grime itself.
In the early days grime was also known as ‘eskibeat’ or ‘sublow’ and groups like Heartless Crew, Ruff Sqwad, and So Solid Crew were growing, spearheaded by Wiley of Pay As You Go Cartel. Wiley’s unique production style led to garage-esque type beats at 140bpm sprung him to fame and his newly formed Roll Deep Crew could be heard across all pirate radios. As grime was becoming favoured so was Dubstep, and the two genres began to escalate throughout 2005 onwards. Lord Of The Mics was started by Jammer, a member of Roll Deep, which played a huge part in the growing of grime; battles like Skepta vs Devilman or Wiley vs Kano and others soon became classics.
During the late 00’s grime fell back from the spotlight. Throwing grime-centric events became harder as the police cracked down on parts of East London just like they had in the US with the rise of groups like N.W.A, and dubstep was being brought constantly to the limelight. Now, 10 years later, grime has risen again. Many refuse the word ‘comeback’ arguing that grime never left, that while Dizzee Rascal, Wiley and the like began to make more pop-like and media friendly music, grime still remained. Artists like Novelist and Skepta are recognised by Kanye West and elements of grime are being used in his production and there are a plethora of documentaries highlighting it’s story.
Dizzee Racal ▶ Dylan Mills has been making music since the early 2000's and his blend of grime, garage, bassline and British hiphop has been extremely successful.
JME ▶ Jamie Adenuga, brother to Skepta, is the co-founder of the crew and label Boy Better Know. His third and latest studio album 'Integrity' entered the charts at number 12.
Kano ▶ Kane Robinson is a well known grime MC and Actor. He is known for being part of the N.A.S.T.Y crew as well as his later 5 albums, the most notable of which was 'London Town'.
Lady Leshurr ▶ Label owner of Gutter Strut Recordings, Melesha O'Garro is a rising star in grime. She is known for her work with Orbital and Queen Speech tracks.
Lethal Bizzle ▶ Maxwell Ansah is not only a musician but an actor too. A member of More Fired Crew in his early days, Bizzle has gone on to release 3 studio albums solo.
Novelist ▶ Known to friends as Kojo Kanka, Novelist is a founding member of The Square Crew and is known to some as 'the new face of grime' and was nominated for Best Grime Act in 2014 at the MOBO Awards.
P-Money ▶ Paris Moore-Williams is a grime MC well known for his live performances as well as his own songs. Signed to Butterz and Rinse, He's still very much a part of the scene.
Roll Deep ▶ Roll Deep are an English grime crew founded in 2002 by Wiley. The crew have put out 5 studio albums and one compilation album and received a huge following in the scene.
Skepta ▶ Joseph Junior Adenuga is a grime artist, MC, songwriter and producer. He has released music since 2003 but has recently skyrocketed to popularity with his single 'That's Not Me'.
Tempa T ▶ Known to his family as Nicky Nyarko-Dei, he's known for his aggressive lyrics and love of word play. He has three studio albums and features on a number of mixtapes.
Wiley ▶ Richard Cowie is an English grime MC, songwriter and producer originally hailing from UK garage crew Pay As U Go. He has mastered the art of chart hits like 'Wearing my Rolex' etc.