When Jay-Z hit the cover of Forbes Magazine in September of 2010, it was definitely a seminal moment in the history of hip-hop. To be co-signed by Forbes, as the premiere publication on wealth and success from a uniquely American perspective, was a major achievement for any rapper or hip-hop artist. But to the get to the cover, you gotta first be in it. UK grime rappers Skepta and his brother JME, both co-owners of Boy Better Know, the independent grime record label, have now crossed that threshold. Next step is the cover.
The title of the article is “Can Grime And Boy Better Know Conquer North America?” And, it basically looks at the origins of Boy Better Know (BBK), as well as examines its founders and their modus operandi in trying to prognosticate the future of grime in America. All this scrutiny of course comes after Drake signed up with BBK, and Skepta’s latest album Konnichiwa.
About Drake, the article says,
The North London record label, crew and brand has done more to introduce English grime music to Americans than anyone since Dizzee Rascal… in no small part thanks to their association with Drake, who “signed” to BBK last in February. It’s a testament to their brand that they’ve got the rap’s foremost Canadian wearing Stone Island and inking his allegiance permanently. But it’s “quick come up” is actually due to momentum built up over 10 years of dedicated, independent grind.
And, about Konnichiwa,
Ultimately, the future may be down to the success of Konichiwa, Skepta’s long-awaited album, his first since 2011. Fueled by pure grime singles like “That’s Not Me” and “Shutdown,” but looking beyond London thanks to collaborations with A$AP Mob and others, its impact outside of grime’s U.K. homeland will go a long way towards determining whether the movement can crack a U.S. market usually hostile towards foreign interlopers.
Click, to go to Forbes and read more.
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