Today, we went to Stormzy’s shoot for the fourth installment of his (legendary!) Wicked Skengman freestyle series that took place in his hometown of Croydon. He announced that he’d be there to film only a day prior, and that was all much of South London (and more, probably) needed to show up in droves, both for support and to try to get in the shot (or, like myself, get some good footage for press purposes). What I learned instantly upon walking up to the area where it was taking place: while people like Skepta are expanding the culture outside of Europe (into the States), Stormzy is helping to continue its growth here in London…and he’s definitely one of the new kings of the culture in doing so.*
Just being an onlooker was entertaining, as the crowd was glued to ever bar he threw out; it wasn’t uncommon to get such a live response from a punchline that they even had to pause filming (example: Stormzy made sure to include his collaboration with Nick Jones and recent BET Award win, and rightfully so). A few notables also appeared to both show support: G FrSH, New Gen artist Renz, Krept (of Krept and Konan) and even the more elusive than not Section Boyz, complete with fresh fitteds bearing their brand.
[We left a bit early, but Stormzy was also setting up for a cypher as well, so one can expect even more from some other emcees when the video premieres.]
You can check out a sneak peek into what went down above; you can watch the growth via his previous freestyles, it’s clear to see that Stormzy has come quite a long way from the starting line. Respect.
*It should be stated that Stormzy is pushing Grime and UK Hip-Hop into the States as well…the BET Award is a strong example of that.