GRIME MAKES A DENT
The past few weeks have seen grime making serious inroads into the consciousness of future-minded American audiences. First, Rinse FM made their broadcasts available worldwide through the net. Then NYC had its first proper grime-centric club night (Bangers & Mash at Rothko). And this past Saturday, a development with potentially far-reaching implications: the reigning heavyweight champ of all hip-hop radio stations in New York, Hot 97, played grime during its hugely popular Cipha Saturdays show...
Introduced as "Something you probably don't know about that's blowing up the streets of London," the Forward Riddim
rang a massive alarm in the center of the stagnating US hip hop playlist. Sandwiched between 50 Cent and Elephant Man, Lethal Bizzle's raucous Forward beat wrought absolute havoc and seemed to issue a direct warning that London ain't taking no shorts.
There was a symmetry in hearing grime mixed indiscriminately with dancehall and hip hop that signalled for me the very real possibility that the hip hop mainstream in the US could actually embrace grime as it has dancehall. Whereas many Yanks who have been tuned into what's going on in the world of grime have assumed it would not find an audience outside raverdom or hipsterdom here, the important cultural event of Hot 97 playing the Forward Riddim seems to suggest otherwise, or at least I hope so...
Mosey on over to Dissensus
for more on this subject.