This month, YouTube UK is launching ‘The Rise’, a celebration of British creative talent, in which they have invited the platform’s most successful pioneers to nominate their rising stars on the way to the top.
GRM Daily founder Posty’s story is not only a story of excellence within Black British business and culture, but is synonymous with the rise of Grime and Rap. Seemingly from nowhere with the help of his peers, Posty and his team stepped up and, in the face of adversity, upheld their own convictions against the odds, creating one of the most influential and vital channels for a generation of Black British talent on YouTube.
11 years later, GRM Daily today continues to be the epicentre of Black British music culture in the UK, with a staggering 3 billion views and 3 million subscribers. On being selected by YouTube to pick his rising star, Posty said ‘I was humbled to be a part of The Rise because I love what it stands for – creatives supporting other creatives, and celebrating the cutting edge of culture in the UK. I love the fact that people who have been doing something for so long, such as myself, are able to pass on the baton and shine a spotlight on other people that are coming up and doing brilliant things.’
On picking Meekz he said, ‘He’s not scared to be himself in terms of his music and his visuals. At GRM we really respect his eye for detail in everything that he does. He’s extremely creative and passionate about his music and his releases, and has loads of potential. We also wanted to pick Meekz because he’s never been on the GRM channel. We represent people going out and doing things for themselves and doing things well. Our channel was birthed out of a necessity. To pick someone that has no direct relationship with the channel, aside from the fact that the music is represented by the channel.’
Having selected his one to watch for ‘The Rise’, Posty joins the likes of the nation’s PE teacher Joe Wicks MBE, YouTuber and cultural icon KSI and renowned choreographer Sherrie Silver. Here Posty speaks to Meekz on what it means to be part of The Rise, building an identity as an artist, and what the future holds.
POSTY: How has YouTube helped you to build an identity as an artist?
MEEKZ: I’ve always been Meekz. Platforms like GRM, Mixtape Madness and P110 have been building for years and you’ve got millions of subscribers. The work you’ve all put in is incredible and YouTube has meant I’ve been able to watch all the artists you’ve supported over the last decade. With the huge number of viewers the channels have, it helps the cream rise to the top. YouTube has allowed me to show the world Meekz. Honoured to have 2 of the biggest freestyles on a couple of those channels, shout out to the fans first and foremost every time and for the platforms supporting, not just me but the whole scene.
POSTY: How does it feel to be part of The Rise?
MEEKZ: It’s an honour you know. It’s platforms like GRM that the artists need to keep supporting them. Everyone in the scene lifts each other up. I haven’t done a Daily Duppy or had GRM host any of my videos yet so for you to select me is very inspiring and proves that there’s no agendas, no bias, we’re all in this together and great, real music is the most important thing. Sick of you to acknowledge that. Big love to every artist doing their thing too.
POSTY: Why are platforms like YouTube important for aspiring artists?
MEEKZ: We all have our own stories. YouTube helps us tell the stories of our lives and give our music directly to the fans. It gives control to the artist. It allows us to portray our experiences, upbringing, version of events to a whole world of people who can relate in their own way, without maybe ever having been to Manchester or the UK. YouTube lets me communicate my lyrics, my story, to the fans directly, no barriers. Any artist has the potential to change their life by uploading their music and taking it to the world!
POSTY: What are you working on right now & what can we expect next from you?
MEEKZ: It’s top secret but I’m ready to go harder than I ever have before!