“She wants a man from Brum:” so boasts the title of, and lyric in, Birmingham rapper SafOne’s 2015 heater of a track. Thing is, for a big decade or two (at least since advent of rap) no one wanted to go near his Midlands home city. A two-hour train from London, considered not as culturally revered as Manchester—the city often found itself lingering in the background, only briefly given some shine when The Streets popped up with their debut record.
In the past few years, however, there’s been a shift. Lyrical behemoths like Lady Leshurr—chatting about brushing teeth and racking up millions of views—and fierce MCs like Mist have ensured that Birmingham is indelibly plastered across British music history.
After Hip Hop in the Holy Land and Don’t Call it Road Rap, we called in Mike Skinner to host his third documentary (and how could we not? he is, after all, a Brummie). In the film Skinner meets Leshurr, Mist, Jaykae, Lotto Boyzz, SafOne and Dapz on The Map and tries to get a sense of what has caused the new found confidence in the city, and what is means to be from Birmingham. Watch above.
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This article originally appeared on Noisey UK.