News 22 February 2017
Author: Alex Griffin

15 mad things we learnt from Stormzy’s NFTR interview

22 February 2017

The Not For The Radio gang are back again and this time they have one of their biggest interviews yet.

The Wicked Skengman himself, Stormzy, is in the hot seat, fresh off the back of playing Vis, Posty and Chams his Gang Signs And Prayer album.

As well as touching on the creation of his debut LP, they get into a whole host of other topics. Below are 15 mad things we learnt from the lengthy conversation, as they get to grips with just about everything Stormzy related.

Watch the full interview right here on GRM Daily.

GSAP is his attempt at a Frank Ocean & Adele moment

Stormzy said during the chat that everything he’s released so far doesn’t put him on the same pedestal as his favourite artists, but the new album is his attempt at that level of artistry.

The features were assembled like a football team

He reveals that every feature on there brought something individual to the track and were there to cover ground he couldn’t himself. He likened the process to a football manager selecting his team “against Stoke on Wednesday”.

There’s biblical references throughout

Chams tells of some references to Bible passages from Matthew and John, revealing that it’s a running theme throughout the LP. Get ready for some “grime gospel”.

He thinks the BRIT Awards recognition this year was justice

Although he’s not over the moon per se, Stormzy feels the BRIT Awards recognising the likes of himself, Skepta and Kano this year was the right thing to happen. Being up in the regular categories, rather than making a special grime category, was also the right step forward in his eyes.

He had his reasons for not speaking out about the feds on Channel 4

Stormzy believes his door being kicked down by the police was because he was black and living in an affluent area. He also gave reasoning as to why he didn’t speak out when prompted on Channel 4 to do so: he wanted to do so more subtly and in the best way he could. He’s out here repping for his communities in other ways.

“Don’t tark too much” was always in the brand plan

When quizzed whether the infamous “don’t even tark too much” line and Flipz covering his mouth was intentionally used to be part of their #MERKY brand, Big Mike confirmed it was.

He doesn’t rave too much either

Stormzy said that he avoids the pitfalls of touring – ie girls, drinks and drugs – because his body can’t handle it. He can’t go out and perform the next day and would rather “get room service and watch telly”.

A stolen jacket led to his Adidas partnership

His manager bought him some fresh Adidas creps ready for a meeting with them when they were broke, as well as a stolen jacket. From there their relationship blossomed.

The “back up dancer” bar wasn’t a direct shot at J Spades

Following the Kanye West BRIT Awards performance, he and a group of other well established artists were branded as “back up dancers” by J Spades. Despite his comment, Stormz said his timeline was full of the comment and his bar in “Shut Up” was addressing everybody.

The beef with Dillian Whyte was all from a “misunderstanding”

One person he has had back and forth words with though, is boxer Dillian Whyte. Stormz put the whole issue down to a misunderstanding that is “whatever” in reality, and assures he has no real bad feelings towards him.

There’s two videos for “Big For Your Boots”

The influential females who appear throughout the video – like Raye, Ray BLK and more – had to turn out for two video shoots. Stormzy really wanted them in it as part of the concept, but he didn’t like the original video and it had to be scrapped.

Him and Maya Jama have been together since he was broke

Stormzy says that he and his girlfriend, presenter Maya Jama, met at Culture Clash 2014 and before he had earned any real money. He shut down any pessimists that claimed she was in it for the money and assures she has her own dough in the bank and always has done.

He bought his mum a yard

According to Posty, a lyric on the album reveals Stormzy has bought a house for is mum. She has her own business now to work on too and having his family be financially free is the best achievement in his life so far.

He’s tired of the grime purists

Stormzy is fully against anybody thinking they can dictate what is and isn’t grime and he’s always going to do what he likes, no matter what they think. He even called out some of the “older pussy oles” who try to be a gatekeeper on what can and can’t happen in the scene.

He’s 95% sure he’d never sign a deal

The independent route has worked so far, so Stormz is 95% sure he’d never sign a deal with a record label. He “doesn’t always know what god has got planned” for him so wouldn’t rule it out, but don’t expect it any time soon.