Why we must protect Stormzy at all costs.
If somebody from the States who is not into UK music asks you who Stormzy is, the answer you’d give them now compared to the answer you’d have given them 2 years ago are worlds apart.
‘Raw’ ‘Underground’ ‘Exciting’ were probably words that Stormzy became all too familiar with back in 2016, when ‘Shut Up’ was running up the charts, people began to take a deeper interest into the ‘WickedSkengman’ series (feels weird calling it that but I just can’t think of a better word to describe it), and Stormzy was starting to utilise the limelight the UK scene showered upon him.
But now, as we approach 2019, Stormzy is not just an artist. Stormzy is also a philanthropist, a publisher, and just a full time badboy. I’ve been a massive fan of Stormzy since 2014 (he’s the only UK artist who’s tapes I’ve actually purchased) and it makes me proud to see that he is supporting great causes, putting out great music — GSAP was a masterpiece of an album — and still leaves himself time to throw dirt on Theresa May and the government every now and then.
I’m not sure if it’s like this for everyone, but the reason I feel as though I identify with Stormzy is because he literally is what I think I’d be like WHEN I become wealthy and famous. Perhaps it is also the fact that you can tell Stormzy is a man who knew he was going to be great. Dropping Scary and then just ghosting off from the scene, that is balls. ‘Yo Theresa May, where’s that money for Grenfell? Oh you thought we just forgot about Grenfell?’ That is balls. Just for a second put aside the fact that this man is a musical genius, and you begin to realise that Stormzy is a man who is focused heavily on making his platform our platform.
And whilst Stormzy is such a great individual, it was only after being part of the audience at his talk at the Barbican centre that you realise that Stormzy’s rise to greatness was no mistake, no accident, no coincidence, and that is owed to the strong team he has that surrounds him. Whenever we used to hear #Merky, we’d think of music, now when we think of #Merky, we have no option but to think of a label, a scholarship, a publishing company, and the thing that impresses me so much is that you can tell this is barely even the start of the #Merky journey to being a driving force for a better society.
Stormzy. The man who can do no wrong. Couple goals with his girlfriend. Family goals with his mum. Career goals with his team. This is a man who deserves a seat in the House of Lords for his contribution to society so far, and he is only 25. He is so humble, yet so self aware, likening doing so much good to just ‘getting my boy a bottle of water from the shop’. He sees it as his responsibility to use his platform to uplift others and he is a one of a kind in that sense, as he is finding ways to improve society that we certainly would’ve previously put past him. But now, Stormzy is a man who is capable of absolutely anything.
And this is all before I’ve even read the book so you can definitely expect another blog post after I’ve done so. Studying English Literature at uni, once I left, I had no interest in picking up a book again, after being so in love with reading. ‘The Rise Up’ has changed that, this is the first step to me becoming that bookworm I was in my youth again, so I have to thank the #Merky team for that.
Stormzy finished off his speech, in response to Akala questioning him about his plans with music — you can be forgiven for forgetting he is a musician at the end of the day — with ‘I’m coming’ and that can only mean exciting things for the future. So Uncle Mike, keep making us proud in everything you do, the face of ‘Black Britishness’ is representing us so well and for that I, personally, am grateful as it inspires me to chase my dreams and succeed.
\P.S. My claim to fame is that Stormzy and I once had a conversation on Twitter, so we basically are mates. Mike lad, if you ever do stumble upon this, hit me up man, been a while.
P.S. v2 I just remembered we once had a conversation in real life too. Mike bro, hit me up man, it’s been way too long, proud of you bro.