Street Narration

Street narration. I got this term from Kenny Allstar, the voice of the streets. It’s the way in which he describes rapper’s descriptions of their realities. This idea led me to think about the ways in which artists express themselves. There are two artists that I feel have done this in an extremely refreshing way. So, I thought that I should share them with you.

All of these traps, and all of these street signs
None of them will be yours or mine

The video, the lyrics, his vocals. All of it touched me. I’ll come clean – I was tearing up on the first few listens. You can hear the pain in his voice. Although there aren’t many lyrics, what he’s saying is so moving because of how he says it. He sings as if he’s talking to his bredrin – “just put down your bottle, tell me your sorrows / I care about you fam”. It’s a moving track that shows a man trying to do something positive in his community, despite the pain he feels. Once again it humanizes people from the hood as the video juxtaposes the song. It must be stressed again – my man has got vocals! I didn’t know people still sung like that.

Then I look down, I see bare missed calls
That’s mumsy ringing my phone, I should’ve went home

Next, it’s your boy Knucks. I’ve listened to this guy for ages so it’s nice to see him pop out with the outro from his latest project, NRG 105. If you know anything about Knucks, his style is wavey, laid back and clever and Home is no different.

Dubbed chill drill by fans, the beat mixes drill drums and a saxophone (Knucks being a fan of both drill and sampled beats). However, it’s his story that grabs the listener. Knucks tells us about growing up in London, from the perspective of a 17-year-old still living at home with his mum but surrounded by temptation, risk and weapons. The ending of the story led to a discussion with my mum, who I showed the video to. She argued that it’s difficult to see the moral of the story, since she didn’t think that the story would connect with the people at risk. She fears that it’s too late for them. Unfortunately, they have been exposed to certain things from things from a young age and have lacked the correct people to guide them. Nonetheless, the song is a great reflection of the times in London and is executed exquisitely.

I hope you enjoy. This reflection can also be accessed on SoundCloud. Here me express myself instead as I try to up my podcast game. There will be more music suggestions to come.

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