This is a momentous occasion for grime and UK hip-hop. In creating Merky Records, in association with Atlantic Record, Stormzy is effecfively joining the ranks of hip-hop entrepreneurs like Diddy, Jay-z and Birdman. Now, put some respek on that!

From the beginning of his career, Stormzy who also goes by #Merky, has been doing this music thing by himself along with a close-knit group of associates and friends.

But, before he released his chart-topping album in early 2017, Gang Signs and Prayer, he shared with Esquire UK his thoughts on what it means to be unsigned.

“Back then, record companies said: ‘Do this, otherwise you can’t have a career.’ But radio and record labels don’t have that power no more. I freestyle and put it on iTunes, it goes top 10 and the radio has to play it. People hold the power now. I’m just going to keep on doing what I was doing before anyone knew my name.”

And so, now that he’s reversed course, given his position of stength, with sold out shows on global tours, and sky high album sale numbers, Stormzy has chosen the best route to be signed. He now takes grime in the waters charted by moguls like P Diddy who formed Bad Boy Entertainment in 1993 in partnership with Arista Records, although today it’s now with Sony Music. As well as, Birdman whose independent label Cash Money Records
is in partnership with Universal Music Group.

The only question now is, how long will Merky Records have only one artist on its roster? And, when will Stormzy begin signing other artists to his new label?

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