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BIOGRAPHIES

Ras Kwame

ArtForm: Event Host, CityShowcase Act/Composer

Ras Kwame came into the music industry as a club DJ playing Hip-Hop, R'n'B and Reggae, in the early nineties, which soon progressed to promoting for Kiss FM's groundbreaking Starlight Club night and the Mean Fiddler Music Group’s Subterranea club events showcasing the best in Hip Hop.  Ras took control of the turntables for artists such as Gang Starr, The London Posse and The Fugees whilst working on production/ remix work for the likes of Chante Moore and George McCrae and the 49ers.

In 1994 he became proprietor of West London’s Sugar Shack record store and by 1996 through to 2000, had formed the Baby Shack Recordings label and his UK Garage production outfit, M- Dubs, spanning huge innovative underground club anthems for the flourishing UKG scene, such as ‘Over Here’ featuring Ritchie Dan, ‘Bump and Grind’ featuring Lady Saw and the underground smash ‘Body Killin’ by The Vincent Alvis Project.

In 2001, Ras Kwame formed the new International Rude Bwoy Recordings label, releasing the Breakbeat singles Shimmy No.1 and Cum On to critical acclaim from DJs & Press alike, including rave reviews in the NME & The Face. At present, future projects scheduled include The Homegrown Mixtape, featuring original productions with the current crop of UK Urban Talent (scheduled for a major label release) plus an ever-increasing DJ/ hosting schedule on a national & international level.

ONE MUSIC WITH RAS KWAME is a weekly broadcast on Radio 1, showcasing the best of signed & unsigned UK Black Music. One Music is the umbrella name for three shows hosted by three DJs over three days each week to succeed the late John Peel slots, with the main emphasis to keep his legacy alive by championing new music across the nation. Guests include Damian Marley, Floetry, Maxi Priest
Wednesdays 11pm – 1am 97.6-99.8 FM www.bbc.co.uk/radio1/onemusic

100% HOMEGROWN Ras Kwame hosts a two hour specialist show, 100% Homegrown, dedicated wholly to championing the sound of urban UK. The show is causing quite a stir across the country with DJs, producers, A&Rs, signed & unsigned urban artists all ‘tuning in’ to hear the ‘real’ sounds of the UK Underground. As a respected producer within the music industry, the 1Xtra website now has a ‘Ask Ras’ section where young budding musicians across the globe can request answers to their music industry. In 2003, Ras was nominated in the ‘Best Radio DJ’ category at the MOBO Awards, making his specialist show the first to receive an accolade for a digital station. Ras has interviewed most of the UK music scene (Sticky, Mega Man, Floetry, Killa Kella, Tubby T, Gemma Fox) Sundays 5pm-7pm www.bbc.co.uk/1xtra

100% HOMEGROWN SESSIONS presents live from the BBC Maida Vale Studios. 1Xtra invites 150 hand selected VIP guests to this intimate showcasing of artists from the UK urban spectrum such as Dizzee Rascal (exclusive Special) Cassius Henry, Dynamite MC, Killa Kella & Keisha White live on stage, with & without a live band. The two hour show consists of Ras Kwame interviewing artists, both on stage & from behind the turntables with the entire show broadcast live on 1Xtra with a simultaneous webcast. BBC Maida Vale Studios www.bbc.co.uk/1xtra

UMAs Ras co-hosted alongside Michelle Gayle at the 2005 Urban Music Awards at the Connaught Rooms hotel, Covent Garden, London introducing artists such as Maxi Priest, Heather Small (M People), Roll Deep & Sway on stage. He also collected his second award for Best Radio DJ for his weekly Radio 1 show, with his first being for his weekly 1Xtra show in 2004. www.urbanmusicawards.net

IN THE CITY MANCHESTER Ras headlined the urban conference in both Brighton & Manchester in 2005 including unsigned artist selection, hosting producers showcase with Hank Shocklee (Public Enemy) & the soul R&B showcase with Terri Walker, DJ at the final unsigned showcase & the record launch parties for Trenton Harrison’s Pale Shade label & Rio Ferdinand’s White Chalk label. In 2004, Ras contributed to this event by chairing the A&R Panel at the Urban Summit alongside panellists from Island, BMG, J-Did / Virgin, Shallit Global & Sanctuary Urban. Hosting the Unsigned Showcase, alongside acts such as Cream Cartel, Aphletik, Fun-da-mental, Sharissa plus co- presenting The Next Big Thing Showcase with Terri Walker, Roll Deep, Sovereign, Klashnekoff, JD, Stush, Nina Jayne, Killa Kela, Jamie Scott.

HIP HOP CONNECTION MAGAZINE Ras Kwame’s Homegrown is a monthly page, solely dedicated to promoting urban talent from across the UK. This media platform allows his radio listeners the chance to put names to faces

SPIT A new weekly TV show allowing the UK’s favourite MCs/ rappers the opportunity to showcase their freestyle skills in a studio with only a microphone and a DJ. Guests: Lethal B, Simon Webbe, Kano ++
Presently broadcast three times a week on Channel U.

RADIO 1 LIVE 2003 Radio 1 hosted a week of shows live from Brighton which included an ‘urban’ day. Ras Kwame was invited to be a panellist for a US vs. UK music debate, with Ras obviously waving the ‘homegrown flag’ to the end.

BLACK HISTORY MONTH 2003 Ras hosted a live 100% Homegrown show from Germany, dedicated to showcasing urban German Homegrown talent. Ras, already established in Germany, was able to interview the ‘main players’ in their underground scene.

AFRICA LIVES The highlight of 2005 was when Ras travelled to his homeland, Ghana, to broadcast three consecutive live radio on Radio 1 as part of the BBC’s Africa Lives Season with fellow Ghanian guest artist, Sway.  

SHOWTIME with RAS KWAME TV show launched on Channel U on 4th December 2004.  The fortnightly Saturday music series digs deep into the UK’s urban music industry including interviews with producers, managers & A&Rs alongside live performances from the hottest acts at venues across the country. Guests include Nathan, Lethal B, Keisha White, Klashnekoff, Skinnyman, Sway ++
Showtime Special due for broadcast early 2006.
 
SMOOVE LIVE/ URBAN:UK (in association with the Arts Council, England) launched on Friday 9th July 2004 as a new monthly event specifically set up to showcase UK home grown artists – Estelle, Klashnekoff, Crazy Titch, J2K & Kano, hosted by Ras Kwame. The idea is to allow the general public a rare chance to see them perform exclusive tracks live on stage. The event is filmed for the Showtime TV show on ChU.

LIVE @ SUGA SUGA, LONDON A ‘music industry’ party, showcasing live acoustic performances by the UK’s home-grown talent. Ras Kwame plays a UK only DJ set + host. Guests: Dutty Doogz, Tubby T, Sef (Reelists) Swaydasapo Channel, Gemma Fox, J2K, Carl Ramsey, Universe ++. Mon 7pm -11pm

HOMELANDS FESTIVAL Ras Kwame played host and DJ on stage at the Left Field Bar’s first appearance at the We Love…Homelands dance music festival, held at Matterley Bowl near Winchester on Saturday 29th May 2004, promoting unity and celebrating our multicultural society through music. The Love Music Hate Racism Campaign (www.lmhr.org.uk) 29th May Leftfield Stage/ tent

URBAN MUSIC SEMINAR Ras chaired the 100% Homegrown panel with artists Crazy Titch, Kano, Terra Firma, Taz, Lethal B, Skeme. September 2004

U:ME (URBAN MUSIC EVENT) Ras was heavily involved with this Oldham based event which included contributing as both host and panellist for 1Xtra, Punch Records & U:ME rooms alongside artists such as Ty, Crazy Titch, Lethal B, Shystie & Gemma Fox

CHANCERS T4/ CHANNEL 4/ 4LEARNING Ras contributed as both a panellist and guest on the first series of Chancers, the new music show dedicated to guide, showcase & encourage the growing number of driven, determined and diverse individuals within the UK urban communities. Panel: Shaznay Lewis, Trevor Nelson, Fatman Scoop & Bronze 'n' Blak. September 2004 (Chancers 2nd series – Spring 2005)
 
LOWDOWN (BBC2/3) Ras Kwame recently featured on Trevor Nelson’s Lowdown on BBC2, BBC3, R1 & 1Xtra. Ras was invited as an ‘industry’ judge for the Urban Talent competition.

SOUNDSCAPES V&A MUSEUM Ras to contribute to the Soundscape’s Conversations in Sound & Styles event as a panellist alongside UK urban artistes, Shystie & Sabrina Washington (Misteeq) October 2004.

THE HOMEGROWN WEEKEND The 100% Homegrown show receives added excitement every time 1Xtra dedicates a whole weekend to UK artists! All 1Xtra DJs/ presenters join together in force to help boost the cream of UK home-grown, between them, managing to interview ‘name’ artists from across all music genres. Annual: November.

 


(biog facts provided by representative - correct as released for City Showcase June 2006)
 

Featuring In:

City Showcase at RTTB 2011
Sunday 25.09.2011
Run to the Beat 2012
Sunday 28.10.2012
Run to the Beat 2014
Sunday 14.09.2014
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