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

Hasht­ag: #WhoWeBeSes­sions

Playl­ist: WhoWeBe

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Rishma Dhaliwal

Rishma Dhaliwal

Edit­or / PR Con­sult­ant at No Bounds
Rishma Dhali­w­al has extens­ive exper­i­ence study­ing and work­ing in the music and media industry. Hav­ing writ­ten a thes­is on how Hip Hop acts as a social move­ment, she has spent years research­ing and con­nect­ing with artists who use the art form as a tool for bring­ing a voice to the voice­less. Cur­rently work­ing in TV, Rishma brings her PR and media know­ledge to I am Hip Hop and oth­er pro­jects by No Bounds.

About Rishma Dhaliwal

Rishma Dhaliwal
Rishma Dhaliwal has extensive experience studying and working in the music and media industry. Having written a thesis on how Hip Hop acts as a social movement, she has spent years researching and connecting with artists who use the art form as a tool for bringing a voice to the voiceless. Currently working in TV, Rishma brings her PR and media knowledge to I am Hip Hop and other projects by No Bounds.