Bugzy Malone: Grime scene saviour
Bugzy Malone: Grime Scene Saviour
Before Bugzy Malone came ito my attention, in 2014 I was aware of a few modern day Grime artists from Manchester Wrigz, Shifty, RIO & Blizzard who had already established themselves in the Manchester Grime scene, since it begun. These artists being mentioned had gained recognition outside the North by having their music being played on national radio BBC 1Xtra which was responsible for so many urban artists career especially the ones in the Grime scene who credit the station for their breakthrough. In 2014 one particular grime MC from Manchester known as Bugzy Malone, the 26-Year-Old Aaron Davis, who had been engaged in the Manchester Grime scene, since 2010 with the release of his first ever mixtape Swagga Man, and the Spitfire freestyle on the ever popular video Channel JDZmedia. Bugzy gained his first ever 1 million views on YouTube with the freestyle, expanding his fan base outside Manchester, which afterwards gained him the support of Charlie Sloth BBC Radio 1Xtra DJ leading to him making his debut on Fire in The Booth. At first, when he received a Phone call from Charlie Sloth felt Bugzy felt it was a wind-up call as Charlie Sloth wanted him to do a Fire In The Booth. Bugzy Malone first ever one is the most viewed ever with more 12 million views. In May 2016 BBC 1Xtra released his second Fire In The Booth, which is now on the brink of 7 million views. The growth of Bugzy Malone to transforming himself to one of the Grime's elite MC's, outside the North and being crowned ‘King Of The North by his fans has been remarkable. Bugzy has striven hard to become one of the most successful independent British MC’s of his era which is a hard feat considering he is not from London. Since he started his mark on everyone's radar in 2015 he has managed to drop three national top 10 charting EP’s Walk with Me (24 July 2015), Facing Time (3 June 2016), King of the North (14 July 2017). His well-received EP King Of The North, ended up being the most successful project he had put out. The EP entering the national album charts at number 4, was seen as another success for Grime music which had reached an all-time high in 2017. Bugzy sees himself as an outsider and as a MC he is somewhat of a lone wolf, in the Grime scene which is dominated by London MC’s since Grime existed. Bugzy Malone was the first rapper from Manchester to reach the top 10 with his debut EP Walk With Me, under Charlie Sloth Grimey Limey label. While giving up his beloved Manchester, a shout out through the music he was making, his fans latched on to his devotion for his hometown by announcing him The King Of The North. In response for their devotion, he put all of his honesty and emotional scars, into writing personal songs. When you digest a Bugzy Malone track, you can understand the suffering he is going through, the tough years he went through, on the come up before he broke through big time. On July of this Bugzy dropped a bass-heavy anthem Through the Night, featuring UKG legends DJ Luck & MC Neat to show his versatility which turned into a festival favourite amongst the clubs & radio DJ's and fans of his. Despite the fame and achievements which have come his way, Bugzy feels like he has been misjudged by the public, after Ten Years of MCing and honing his craft, he and his team choose to film a behind the scenes Vlog, showing the formidable task he places into having career; proving that the rap fame is not easy. Bugzy would have never thought about documenting his behind the scenes at a younger age, due to his criminal past when he was an adolescent, he claims his bad boy ways started in school by the age of 16, when he got expelled and ended up in jail in Stoke Health, which gave him the space to reflect on what he has done, being in a caged solitary confinement deserted from his mother and his friends. “There’s nothing good about jail,’ he said, “having your freedom taken off you… it’s nothing to be proud of and it’s not any fun no matter how you passed the time.” ‘But then, that feeling… a feeling of getting freedom back, you can’t pay for that feeling. That’s a feeling a lot of people will never get to experience.” In the summer 2015 Bugzy performed in his first festival Parklife, which he had visualized in early career, when he living in a flat on his own and dreaming about a rap career, which turned to a reality, with fans having their hands in the air and rapping his lyrics back to him at Parklife. The years in which Bugzy has been perfecting his craft, he has managed to stay focus by putting all his energy into the music and his sold out live shows and proving fame and money has not gone to his head. “That's all it's about, that's all money is," he continued. "Money is a token, money buys freedom, it doesn’t necessarily buy happiness and I've still got things I'm overcoming in my own mind, but money will buy you the freedom to not have to work as many hours. Money will buy you the freedom to spend more time with your family." This summer Bugzy performed at all the main festivals, Parklife, Wireless Reading & Leeds. In 2016 he got nominated for a MOBO award, in which the track Moving was in the Best Video category, in which he lost out to Nadia Rose who won the video for Skwod. On Tuesday 17 October the nominations for 2017 MOBO, were announce Bugzy Malone was nominated for Best Male pitting him against the likes of Chip, Dave, Giggs, J Hus, Maleek Berry, MoStak, Sampha, Skepta & Stormzy making it a hard to category to predict a winner from. Since writing this article the MOBO awards have taking place. This shows how far Bugzy has come from the iconic beef he had in 2015 with Chip, one the best Grime artists to come from the scene. The clash between the both of them, resulted in some of the best back and forth grime dubs heard at that period, from both artists; It was seen as an iconic moment for Grime music, as it got pushed to the forefront by various music bloggers, urban media platforms and DJ's. Buggy versus Chip beef took the art of Grime clashing to a new level which was exciting for us Grime fans. The whole beef stemmed from Bugsy infamous Fire in The Booth from 2015 where he sent for Chip with the lyrics Go tell Chipmunk not to be cheeky/Grime is a road ting, my man’s hopeless/Go make a pop tune, fuck your A’s and B’s/You went from Chip Diddy Chip to The Streets/Oopsy Daisy, I’m not in your league; finishing the verse with So fuck Chipmunk n his A’s n B’s. It was hard to predict who won the beef, it became the talking point between fans of Grime who ever side you were on; it was entertaining to witness both artists going at each other lyrically. Bugzy and Chip careers were not affected by the beef, both have gone to have successful careers. The winner of the iconic beef was Grime in the end; It gained more interest and following from new fans wanting to discover the genre and be part of the culture. On December 11 the Instagram timeline was filled with disbelieved at the latest development corcerning Bugzy Malone and & Chip beef we never saw a truce coming. The squashing of their beef took place, at Giggs Christmas Dinner which was been attended by most of the urban UK scene. Bugzy & Chip both uploaded a picture of both of them together smiling happily together to their Instagram accounts at the same time, leading to their long standing rivalry being over. Fans of both artists were sent into a frenzy by the developments; the beef was never real only fought on wax. Both artists have not said a word on how they came to calling a truce to their long standing beef, leading fans to believe the reason for them squashing the beef was that they had become to mature to be beefing at their age. Hopefully in 2018 we can expect a Bugzy and Chip collaboration only time will tell. Bugzy has made his mark on the scene with the heavy co-sign from Charlie Sloth, who has been instrumental in his career taking off; he will be around for the long haul and keep on putting Manny on the map dispelling the myth that Grime is a London Thing. In his career so far he has managed to succeed where other major label and independent artists Bugsy Malone has turned all his negatively in to a positive once for all hail the King of the North, may he keep making history by charting regularly on the national album charts with his projects, selling out his UK shows to a large crowd, and international recognition now beckons for him in 2018. From a successful 1Xtra Live 2017 performance in his hometown of Manchester on November 11. Life has to be good for Bugzy now as he says “I always feel blessed and feel lucky to be in the position that I'm in.
“"My mum always wanted me to have a career," he said smiling. "Now she says that I've gone and got myself the best one in the world."