Above clockwise L‑R: Big Narstie, AOD, Moelogo, Show N Prove, Savanna, Nadia Rose, AM, AOD, iO, Maverick Sabre, Yizzy, Alicai Harley. Amzyobr©
Celebrating the very best in Grime, Rap, R&B and Afrobeats from across the UK, PRS for Music and Spotify came together to host the first ever Who We Be Songwriting Sessions. The sessions gave some of the finest artists, songwriters and producers the chance to collaborate at the famous RAK Studios in London, across three days (1–3 October).
Carefully selected performers, producers and songwriters in attendance were: AOD, Alicai Harley, Big Narstie, Big Zuu, Camille Purcell, Cillian, Conducta, EY, Frisco, iO, KrizBeatz, Lioness, Maverick Sabre, Moelogo, Nadia Rose, P2J, Preditah, Remedee, Rocco, Savanna, Scott Supreme & Scott Styles, Shakka, Sharna Bass, Show N Prove, Skengdo x AM, SL, Still Greedy, TSB, Yizzy.
From Jorja Smith claiming Best British Female at the BRIT Awards to Dave winning this year’s Mercury Prize — 2019 has undoubtedly been an outstanding year for the Rap, Grime and R&B industry. The Grime scene even took center stage in Parliament with a Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) UK government report calling to safeguard it as “one of the UK’s most exciting musical exports”.
Martin Maguire, Head of Publisher Support & Relationships, PRS for Music, said: “We celebrate and champion talent across every genre of music at PRS. It’s impressive to see the true power of collaboration; the caliber of music that came out of these studio sessions was phenomenal.”
Safiya Lambie-Knight, Artist and Label Marketing Lead, Urban at Spotify, said: “The Who We Be brand is continuing to evolve and has grown massively since our first live show at Alexandra Palace back in 2017. We’re thrilled that we have been able to build out different areas of the brand, taking it from one of the most listened to playlists to a critically acclaimed podcast — Who We Be TALKS_ — and now partnering with PRS for Music to create this incredible opportunity for songwriters. It’s a massive milestone for the brand and we’re looking forward to continue helping artists to grow.”
The Who We Be playlist has grown substantially over time and is now the UK’s biggest Rap, Grime and R&B Playlist, with more than 547,000 followers. 2017 saw the launch of Who We Be Live — Spotify’s first-ever branded UK show. Over 10,000 music fans filled North London’s Alexandra Palace to witness a renowned live show with some of the hottest urban acts from the UK and the US. The same year also saw the playlist expand to an even larger audience with the launch of the Spotify Originals podcast, Who We Be TALKS_, hosted by renowned DJ, DJ Semtex. In June 2018 Spotify announced that Who We Be Live would not only return to London but also take place in Birmingham. Who We Be’s 2019 live event is due to be announced in the coming weeks.
Representing the rights of over 140,000 songwriters, composers, producers and music publishers in the UK and across the world, PRS for Music actively engages with its members in a variety of ways to help them further their careers and expand their creativity. Collaborative events like this not only serve as a platform for new hits to be written, but encourage new creative relationships to continue and develop into the future. PRS for Music has previously supported and hosted studio sessions at the world-famous Abbey Road Studios in conjunction with the Country Music Association, the first ever Grime and Rap songwriting camp at Tileyard Studios with Notting Hill Music, and continue to host Dance Music sessions in Amsterdam with Sony/ATV Music Publishing.
Instagram: @WhoWeBeUK / @prsformusic
Twitter: @SpotifyUK / @PRSforMusic
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