Interview: Big H
The release of ‘Fire & Smoke’ was long awaited in the grime scene, but last month the album was released after a long hiatus from Big H. The Bloodline crew member is one of grime’s originators and helped lay the foundation young MCs walk on today. With this album release and his forthcoming clash with P Money on Lord Of The Mic 6, The Wrap Up’s Shireen Fenner couldn’t wait to catch up with Big H to talk sending, grime’s pop tarts and much more.
The Wrap Up: You one of the originators of grime music and your flow has influenced many. Who in the grime world would you say you have influenced?
Big H: I’d say I have influenced everyone that has come into contact with making grime, whether it’s producers or MCs. If they say I haven’t influenced them or they don’t know of me then something’s not right. All the great people that have got somewhere generally have and picked up a bit of the style.
TWU: Prez T and yourself have some strong connections to Manchester. Are there any differences in the scene there compared to London?
Big H: Manchester, London… it’s all grime at the end of the day, it doesn’t matter where it is; grime is grime wherever you make it. If you’re a crap MC in Birmingham you’re going to be rubbish in London - it isn’t going to change. Even if I were in Afghanistan I’d still be spitting grime. Manchester is just a place where I went to display my music.
TWU: You’ve got the Bloodline album coming out soon. Can you let us know a bit more about it?
Big H: I don’t know if there are going to be any features, but I do know that there is going to be a full Bloodline CD with me Bossman, Paper Pabs, Meridian Dan, Prez T, 9 Milli Major and anyone I forgot. It’s going to be a hard album; we took time to make it. I think it’s going to be the biggest grime album to come out from the main crew; Boy Better Know, Roll Deep or Bloodline. It was supposed to be coming out around spring, but it could be a summer album. I’m waiting on Pabz to press the button.
TWU: Bloodline as a whole is doing really well individually, from Merdian Dan’s ‘German Whip’ to your release; what’s the rest of the crew up to and where do you feel Bloodline’s position is in grime right now?
Big H: Bloodline is at the top of grime. Anyone I really associate with gets somewhere in their career. I’m not saying it to try and big myself up and all that; you can see with the whole Meridian thing, people went on to do big things. The same thing is happening with Bloodline now, people are doing big things. Meridian Dan is doing better, as an MC that was in the background to come to the forefront, it was because of people like me who believed they could get to that point. Same thing I did with Skepta… he was a DJ in the background at one time; with the right influence and push you can go forward.
TWU: You are known for making extremely bold, brash and overly confident statements. What makes you so confident, and what are the downsides of saying some of the things you have said or the bars you have written? Any regrets?
Big H: When I listen to my bars and other peoples, I feel that mine sound better. That confidence when you’re better than other people at MCing makes you confident when it comes to music. I don’t think my statements are bold or outlandish, I just think they’re facts. In a world of lies, facts stand out because there’s not many facts being said. [Laughs] You can call me the grime lord, I’m here to lay down the commandments. I give people what they want.
TWU: You used a phrase in an interview once saying ‘sweet sort of grime MC’s pop tarts’ – which artists would you apply this statement to?
Big H: Skepta, JME, Wiley and anyone that associates with them and is featured with them.
TWU: You’re clashing P Money in LOTM 6. How are you feeling about the clash and why do you feel now is the right time to be on LOTM?
Big H: I think it’s a great time for me to clash P Money and it’s good for me because I’m getting paid to do something that I like doing - pissing off MCs. P Money’s going to lose on the day. It’s like Tyson fighting Bruno, he’s Bruno and I’m Tyson [laughs]. I hope people will be entertained.
TWU: With two such big names, there is a high probability of one of you walking away worse for wear. Do you think that this clash could negatively affect either of you in your careers?
Big H: No I don’t think anyone’s career could be bent; it’s just music. I think it will boost his career; me chiefing him up will make him more popular… just like it made Manga and Scratchy and others more popular. P Money’s not a big MC, people keep saying to me ‘two big MC’s’… he’s not big. Me? I’m actually big; I created the foundation that he’s walking on today. He’s only just come around, he’s part of the new world order - I’m a grime lord. I’d give anyone a try; Jammer’s signing the cheque and he’s paying the right money, so it’s going to happen.
TWU: You’ve promised some big collaborations in 2014, so what can we look forward to from you this year?
Big H: I’ve got another project being released half way through the year that I’m going to be announcing in the next month or so… I’m just finalizing everything. There will be a lot of names on there that I’ve never collaborated with before.
Words: Shireen Fenner (@Shireenxoxo)