Skinny Malone may be one of London's most creative artists and he's redefining UK rap with his unique style. I recently met up with him to get to know him a little more, it's safe to say the energy you feel from his music is a huge part of his personality. He caught my attention instantly after i watched the video for his track 'RUDEBOI'. He brings a funky, old-school sound which is reinvented with his gritty and creative flow. Skinny has found his own style and sound in a scene where it's becoming increasingly harder to stand out.
How would you describe yourself?
You know what someone asked my bredrin that same question and he said erratic, so i’d say erratic. I guess i’m the best of both worlds I'm calm and calculated as well as extremely spontaneous.
Is there a story behind your name?
Yeah there is, i’m not gonna give them the power but someone once called me Skinny Malinky and i thought they said Skinny Malone. I was going through a rebrand so i was like yeah I'm taking this name. So i said fuck it and i ran with it. It was an icebreaker because like we were often recording with scary people in the background and i used to role with my cousins and they're kinda scary. So it was always nice to say yeah I'm skinny and they look at me and look at the scary guys and everyone laughs.
Can you tell us a little bit about your background?
A little bit about my background, so obviously I'm from Hackney, East London, born and bred. I moved around a lot. I’m from London but i’ve lived all over i’ve lived in Bedford, Portsmouth and lived in Birmingham. I took a little bit of everything i liked from there and just implemented it into what i do now. I’ve always done Music , but I've just taken it seriously the last maybe 3 years.
Where do you find inspiration for your music?
Everyday life, every single day in life because like all my bars are conversational, I'm talking to you the listener.
What is your proudest moment as an artist?
My proudest moment hmm… probably when i directed a music video and shout out Kamilla Rose too she's a G. She put it on MTV rap up too. This was a while ago but recently I also shot for Motion magazine. Which is a big deal for me and RWD mag too, theres been a few i can’t lie. But yeah the main one for me was the MTV joint because i directed the video, had the idea for the video and mixed the song. I was going through some mad shit then too i didn't have a crib, it was just like a victory.
Are there any artists that you're backing at the moment from the UK?
That I'm backing… Vinch, Tokyo the producer, Sam wise. Obviously Triple X gang thats my gang init they don't count but Javvy, Dank Sinatra, YV. Those are some of the gang at least. Che Lingo, ummm Raheem Bakare. There are a lot of people i back, My whole thing is about like I'm not selfish i don't wanna stop a man from doing what he wants to do. So yeah i back everyone, everyone thats about good music.
What have you got in the pipeline for 2019?
Everything! Big man ting , everything. There’s a headline show which many people have been asking for, i always feel like the music’s alright until i hit someone up and they’re like ‘yo bro when you doing a show man’. So yeah lets not even say a date but soon come! We working on some shit man, theres an EP coming out with my guy K Dali. There is some clothing that will be coming out soon from the gang, some gang material. There is a lot!
Do you have any other major interests, aside from the music?
Smoking weed, na I'm joking, na I'm not joking i said that as I'm rolling a zoot. ummmm my other passion is probably art, i like to create, i like to draw and i like to customise clothing. It sounds really corny and cliche but i started too customise clothing because you can’t wear shit twice in a video. Everything worn by Skinny 99% of the time is styled by me, most of the stuff in my videos is actually in my wardrobe. Theres a few people i work with to do what i do. I like fashion.
Do you find that the scene at the moment in overpopulated? Do you think it’s hard to stand out?
It is if you're not like me, if you’re doing what everyone else is doing of course it’s going to be hard to stand out. Im not doing what anyone else is doing, but also I'm not not doing what anyone else is doing, I’m not trying to be different. A perfect example of that is when i first made a video called ‘0.8 in the baggy’. I used the VHS effect and it was me breaking into the scene. Then Skepta made the video for ‘man’, which actually wasn't really his thing but was mine, but it would seem i took it off that. People have moved on from that now but it’s still my thing, so yeah.
How has it been growing up in London, would you say it has had an affect on your music?
Hell yeah haha, growing up in London was like you’re either really big or really fast. Lord knows, i was not big, i was quick like Usain i had a big mouth though. Growing up in London builds character init. It makes you the people you are, and quintessentially what i write comes from this. So yeah it was great, it was the best and worst of times.
Right now ‘we don't know him’ is out all over the globe, go share that, stream that, tell your bredrin about that. You get me, and if you like it hit me up, send me videos to email@example.com and yeah man thank you for having me!
Listen to Skinny Malone's latest single ' we don't know him' here... http://b4sounds.co/SMWeDontKnowHim