Last week, Ace Hotel’s ‘Miranda’ saw a string of artists take to the stage to support Road to Freedom in their fifth edition of ‘Grime Aid’. We teamed up with the annual event to bring you some urban music legends.
Dedicated to the loving memory of Cadet, the event raised money in response to the Sub-Saharan African refugee crisis. Set up by Ra’ed Khan, 100% of the nights’ proceeds go towards providing food, hygiene kits and other forms of aid which the team personally hand out.
Since 2015, Grime Aid has seen huge names take to the stage such as Chip, WSTRN, Bonkaz and P Money, all helping to raise thousands of pounds for the charity.
As the venue filled out, Logan Sama (who has attended the Grime Aid event on multiple years) treated the crowd with back to back grime hits. Returning to host the event, Poet opened the night with a touching tribute about love and life inspired by the memory of Cadet. The first of many tributes from the evening’s guests.
Manga kicked off the first performance of the night with big tracks from his Outbursts From the Outskirts project including “Far Away” and “Different Pattern”, as he stood off stage and amongst the crowd to spit his bars.
Following Manga, Big Tobz took the floor. Switching up the vibes, he brought out Drey Cheek’s to perform their stripped back SBTV Bars + Key’s piece before asking the audience for a moment of silence in honour of Cadet. Calling upon a girl from the crowd to Shaku on stage he played a new track exclusive before performing his brand new single “Babygirl”.
Dominating the venue was Big Zuu. Making an onstage donation, he urged the crowd to join him in helping with the evening’s cause, before going into some of his massive tracks from his Content with Content mixtape. Bringing unmatchable energy to the stage he finished his set with “Hold Dat”.
Opening with “Regardless” off her Care Package EP, Miraa May brought a breath of fresh air to the night amidst the madness. Following in Manga’s footsteps, she took a place within the crowd to perform her huge “Nobody” hit.
Flirta D took the audience back to its grime roots after Miraa May’s performance. Not even flinching between bars when a false fire alarm set off within the venue.
The penultimate act of the event came from SeeJay100. Bringing raw emotion to the stage, he performed his unreleased track that he was creating alongside Cadet before his tragic passing.
Erupting the room, D Double E closed the charity gig. Gun fingers in the air, the crowd competed alongside the MC trying to keep up with his impressive flow as multiple tracks were wheeled up throughout his set.
Event founder Ra’ed took to the mic to close the event, thanking the crowd for their attendance. “Thank you so so much to everyone in this room for coming out today to a cause that’s very close to my heart.”
“Thank you to the artists that performed, no artists got paid to do this thing today, so can you give a round of applause for every artist that has donated their time, the DJ’s, my brother, poet, to GRM Daily, to Road to Freedom and to everyone who made this possible tonight, thank you so much.”
“I’m very very proud to say that we’ve raised £3000. Every single penny of that will buy food and hygiene kits and I’ll travel myself to refugee camps in two weeks to hand that aid out, so thank you so much.”
“Lastly I just wanna say, five years ago when we did this event, the first artist we ever booked was a brother called Cadet, at the end of the night I went up to him crying and was like bruv, we raised £3000. He said Ra’ed, my bro, I’m so proud of you and he hugged me and so today I wanna say, I’m so proud of you my Brother, we will all see you again, Rest In Peace.”
Photo Cred: DB Captures & Ollie Millington