Newham MC Griminal follows in his brothers’ footsteps
08:11 19 November 2010
A young man who grew up around some of the biggest names in British urban music, is now set to hit the big time.
"None of my mates could believe that Tinchy was coming up to me, or that Dizzee was at my house"
PICTURE the scene. Eleven-year-old Joshua Ramsey is sitting cross-legged outside his brother’s bedroom listening to the music being played inside.
His DJ brother Mak 10 is with a certain Dizzee Rascal, and young Joshua has been told in no uncertain terms this is out of bounds.
A few months later at St Bonaventure’s School, Boleyn Road, Forest Gate, Tinchy Stryder thrusts his CD, and a tenner for his troubles, in Joshua’s hand and tells him to make sure his brother gets it.
Joshua, now 19 and and an MC signed to Universal Records under the name Griminal, says: “None of my mates could believe that Tinchy was coming up to me, or that Dizzee was at my house.
“It may have been eight years ago, but they were both already well known in the local grime scene.
“I remember sitting outside that bedroom telling myself I’ve got to become an MC, to get in that bedroom and see what was going on.”
Joshua has proved he can mix it with his older brothers, who also include DJ Marcus Nasty and MC Little Nasty.
Joshua: “I started coming up with my own lyrics and then recorded something.
“My brother Marcus Nasty came in the front room one day and heard it. He said he liked it, but didn’t believe it was me. I convinced him and suddenly he was making loads of calls and getting me on local pirate stations. I was still only 13.”
He releases Supa Dupa on Monday, which has shades of Alicia Keys and Jay Z’s New York, and then his official debut single, Hypnotized, in February. The album will be out soon after.
Joshua is proud to be representing east London and grime in general and points out: “It’s a massive thing for me to be following in the footsteps of Kano, Wiley and Dizzee, I feel proper blessed to have my major record deal, when so many people from the area deserve to have one too.
“I want to represent the scene and east London in the right way. Dizzee has crossed over to the masses, but he’s still himself, and I want to follow in his footsteps, for sure.”
Then he jokes: “The ladies are starting to take an interest, which is good, but I need to make sure those Porsches are actually mine soon, not hired in for one day’s video shoot.”
Meanwhile, there could be another of the Ramsey clan coming through one day.
“We’ve got a younger brother too, and he is allowed in my room, just because I wasn’t. He’s not coming up with anything just yet, but we’ll see.”