Hundreds follow Stormzy big boot steps to a Camden football pitch
South London MC Stormzy, celebrates the release of his debut album with 3 free gigs across Central London. He traveled north to south in a blacked-out van releasing the locations of his gigs via Twitter. There was more time of hype than spent on the mic, Ell was at the scene.
12 hours after his first album was released, MOBO-winning Grime MC Stormzy, announced he would be performing at Camden’s Castlehaven Park at 1 pm. “Everybody here will be telling their grand kids about this”.Within 2 hours, a fashionable hour later than planned, hundreds of fans were stationed at the small north London park. The rapper was celebrating the release of his debut album, Gang Signs & Prayer. By appraising his fans across London. That’s when he announced he would be repeating the impromptu-style gig, in Mayfair and his home-town Croydon later that day.
The 6 foot 5′ MC – with the help of RedBull Music – created a full performance set-up, with floor monitors and DJ decks. The set-up was too large to be unplanned and ‘last-minute’ as the stunts were made to seem. However the make-shift ground level stage, placed in the corner of a caged astro-turf pitch, gave it the grass roots feel that makes grime what it is.
Stormzy was swamped by people as young as thirteen, and required professional security for the gig, security that has worked for Skepta in the past. People as old as 76 were intrigued in the event and entered the cage, as well as the members of Radio 1 team, and press from the London Evening Standard.
The performance consisted of two hits ‘Shut Up’ and most recent ‘Big For Your Boots’. The MC insisted “I would love to perform more but I really have to get going’’. Liam Bailey, vocalist who’s collaborated with Chase & Status, said “his DIY attitude is very inspiring to the people here and tells a lot about his character”. Elle Simionescu-Marin, GRM Daily’s brand manager, couldn’t praise the man enough saying everybody here will be telling their grandkids about this”. She remembers the moment she met him in a grotty, Dalston basement; performing songs off his Dreamers Disease mixtape.
“And now what, he’s performing at the BRIT Awards Wednesday night, with the world’s leading artist, Ed Sheeran”. “He has come so far in such a short amount of time, I’m so proud of him”. As someone whose job it is to progress the Grime scene, she seemed more than adulated, like a celebrity’s mother. Stormzy’s rise is quite astonishing. As of Friday afternoon, every song from his album was in the Spotify Top 50 for that day. It seemed Storm Doris, currently scaring the UK, wasn’t the biggest Storm that day.
Gang Signs & Prayer is out now on iTunes and Spotify.