Further to announcing his highly-anticipated second album ‘Heavy Is The Head’ on Tuesday, British musician Stormzy has today unveiled his brand new single ‘Own It’ featuring musical heavyweights and recent Grammy nominees Ed Sheeran and Burna Boy.
Videos by American Songwriter
‘Own It’ is yet another supremely slick release from the modern-day musician. With Stormzy’s South London flow aligned to a dancehall-tinged production, he sits alongside Ed Sheeran and Burna Boy in his ever-present confidence, with his word play empowering and uplifting a female love interest.
Directed by British director Nathan James Tettey, the accompanying visual was shot across a plethora of London locations and perfectly encapsulates the party spirit of the up-tempo record.
Stormzy’s forthcoming album, “Heavy Is The Head” marks a hugely exciting return for the multi award-winning phenomenon and is a record which has been executively produced entirely by the musician himself; showcasing his world class lyricism and musicality alongside many of his celebrated and relatable subject matters. The album also features additional vocals from some of the most exciting musicians of this generation – all of whom have been hand-picked by Stormzy including Ed Sheeran, H.E.R., Burna Boy, YEBBA, Aitch, Headie One, and Tiana Major9 with production from Fred Gibson, Fraser T Smith, T-Minus and others.
To date, Stormzy has unveiled three of the sixteen album tracks, leaving thirteen unheard tracks still to come. In April, he made his remarkable return to the spotlight when he unveiled ‘Vossi Bop,’ his first release since 2017. ‘Vossi Bop’ broke the record for the biggest week one streams for a British Rapper ever, with streams accumulating to over 12.7 million! The single earnt Stormzy his first ever UK #1 single, holding the top position for two consecutive weeks. Shortly after, he unveiled the stunning ‘Crown’before unveiling his latest release ‘Wiley Flow’ – where he paid homage to British MC, Wiley.
The album announcement follows on from Stormzy being hailed as one of TIME Magazine’s ten ‘Next Generation Leaders’last month which coincided with him being the only leader honored with a cover for the special issue.
Before Stormzy released his platinum-selling #1 debut album, ‘Gang Signs & Prayer’ in February 2017, many would merely have called him one of the most promising rappers on the UK scene. Nearly three years on however, that description is utterly inadequate. A showman like no other, his remarkable ascent has been accompanied by his honest and relatable character. Known for evolving the underground musical landscape, as well as being a perennial political agitator, Stormzy is a true spokesman of black empowerment and social activism. He has become one of the UK’s most inspiring cultural figures and earlier this year, during his headline performance at Glastonbury Festival, he took the opportunity to highlight a plethora of social issues, including the injustice of young black children being criminalized in a biased and disproportionate justice system.
Despite being out of the ‘musical’ spotlight last year, his philanthropy continued. In July 2018 Stormzy launched ‘The Stormzy Scholarship’ – a studentship which funds the study of two black students, each year, at Cambridge University and this summer, launched its second year of the scholarship. Subsequent to the scholarship, he unveiled #Merky Books, an imprint formed in collaboration with Penguin Random House UK which saw the release of his own book ‘Rise Up: The Story So Far’ in November. Shortly after he revealed the imprint’s ‘Writers’ Prize’ – an initiative which looks for the best authors of the next generation. Adding further strings to his bow, the Ghanaian MC also announced his very own music record label #Merky Records in January 2018 – a subsidiary of Atlantic Records UK – which will look to sign the hottest new and emerging talent.
Further to Stormzy’s incredible rise within his recorded music, the Croydon-born MC has also broken records in the live sphere and in June earlier this year he became the first British Rapper to ever headline Glastonbury Festival, one of the world’s biggest music festivals! Shortly after, he headed to Ibiza for his annual #Merky Festival – a 2-day event which hosts some of the UK’s most in-demand artists. This year the festival sold-out in 48 hours, marking the first time – in Ibiza history – for a ticketed event to have all tickets sold off of the island, prior to the event.
Building momentum with impassioned support from his devoted fan base, Stormzy is now the proud possessor of over 25 awards including; 2 x BRIT Awards, 1 x Ivor Novello Award, 6 x MOBO Awards, 1 x Q Award, 1 x MTV EMA, 1 x BBC Music Award, 1 x Teen Choice Award, 3 x AIM Awards, 2 x BET Awards, 2 x British GQ Awards, 2 x Global Awards and many more.
Stayed tuned to watch Stormzy pave the way with his genre-defining record, “Heavy Is The Head.”