GRIME MUSIC – is it to blame for youth violence?

Mums/Dads here’s the question:  Is Grime music to blame for youth violence?  Yes music does change your mood, I feel completely different when listening to Alison Hinds singing soca than I do when listening to Adele singing a love song.  BUT I actually believe youth violence was around well before Grime music.

But is Music really to blame for the rise in Youth Crime? 

Music has always been linked to emotion. In the UK there was Grime and now there is Drill which is being blamed for the rise in youth crime. However, reggae used to be blamed, music (singing) was banned in the slave trade. However there is a big UK music scene with young people singing positive music eg. Alfa Mist, Barney Artist. And there ARE many who are doing their best to help children be their best like Chris Preddie OBE (who I’ve had the great pleasure of meeting). 

Some may be alarmed by how Drill Crews such as 67 dress, flirting with gang imagery with matching black sportswear and masks, but this is as innocuous as similarly tribal dressing by white indie bands with their uniform of skinny jeans and leather jackets. The performative violence of Drill rappers’ lyrics isn’t necessarily harmful either, and is arguably a document of their environment: “Our art is imitating our life, not the other way round,” rapper Abra Cadabra tells the Guardian.

Music remains a valuable means of self-expression, and, perhaps, financial reward, for black Londoners who are among the poorest ethnic groups in the city, with 35% classed as low-paid. “When the youth see man at Wireless festival, hear man on the radio, and see man making money out of this, it inspires them,” Abra adds.

And another article in the Guardian shows statistics that knife violence is DOWN 4% from last year… 

The Mayor of London’s knife crime strategy, published in June 2017, contains the latest available figures on knife crime in the capital, and states that gang-related crime accounted for 5% of all knife crime with injury in 2016, down from almost 9% the previous year. The victims of “serious, gang-motivated” knife crime were predominantly male (92%), young (80% under 25 years of age) and from a BAME background. Just over 60% of knife crime offenders were BAME.

We only see/hear what we’re shown/told by the media. As you know, sensationalism sells… And musicians have always been a target.

I’ve met two amazing Grime artists… Stormzy and, more recently, Lethal Bizzle. They were both charming, forward thinking, generous, sincere musicians who DO care about the youth of our country. Music has always been about feelings… and right now Grime reflects the feelings that much of our youth have. It doesn’t CAUSE the violence but is a REFLECTION of what’s happening on our streets. A wake up call. A voice to the voiceless. Music has always been that.

There are some amazing organisations that work tirelessly to help our Youth that I don’t believe get the coverage they deserve… 

Young People Matter

Youthful mind, social heart. Young People Matter is a charitable organisation of men, women, youth and children joined together by a shared commitment to nurturing the potential of children, promoting healthy living and fostering a sense of social responsibility. They provide After School & Breakfast Clubs, Half Term & Holiday Clubs, Youth Services and Community Outreach. 

A Few Great Men

An organisation to support, uplift and empower today and tomorrow’s generation.

At A Few Great Men, they understand the issues and challenges that today’s youth face coming from the struggle, whether that’s the struggle of the community or the struggle within-self.  It’s something we relate to.

Through workshops, mentoring, events and motivational speaking, they will continue to inspire and do all that they can to ensure growth and positive change.

Make Dreams Reality / Chris Preddie OBE 

Make Dreams A Reality (MDR) facilitate mentoring programs and workshops for, young people who attend secondary school, college, youth clubs, YOTs, PRUs and prisons throughout the UK.   “We at MDR are committed to challenging the barriers and tackling issues that young people face by applying new and innovative ways to engage, empower and motivate.

Many young people display challenging behaviour which is often misunderstood by peers and teachers. These young people are often, sadly, overlooked. We at MDR embrace ALL young people and believe that by channeling their talents and energy in a positive way, will in turn empower the young people, and will subsequently have a positive impact on their behaviour. We at MDR are committed to finding their unique and shining qualities which, more often than not, go undiscovered”.

The closing down of community/youth centres and cutting of youth budgets has left kids with nothing to do and Grime music is a manifestation of the frustration of being bored and ignored!  Saddiq Khan announced extra funding for schools to try and give children extra activities to keep them off the streets.  What are your thoughts on this?

Parents have four to six weeks’ annual holidays to keep kids occupied, kids have an average of thirteen weeks of annual holidays and half terms.  You can’t be there all the time.  So what do you as a parent to keep your kids off the streets?   And in your opinion is Grime to blame for youth violence? Would love to hear your thoughts on this. Hit me up on Facebook,Twitter, and Instagram.