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Sep 5 / Prinza

Ms Dynamite’s My London – Interview by ES Magazine

Ms Dynamite’s My London

The rapper tucks into tiger prawns on the Old Kent Road and goes to Soho for a nightcap

Home is…

Ladbroke Grove, but I grew up in Camden, which will always be home. They are very similar: real melting pots with loads of different types of people and cultures living together.

Last play you saw?

My first job was at the Hackney Empire and I still have a few family members who work there. It’s become a ritual to all go to the pantomime there every Christmas. Last year it was Dick Whittington and his Cat.

Best place for a first date?

Mango Room in Camden. It’s nice enough that you feel that you’ve made an effort, but not so nice you feel like you’ve gone all out. On a first date you don’t want to feel like you’ve made that much effort. It’s a good middle place.

Favourite London club?

Fabric has the most amazing sound system. Every time I perform there the bass just shoots through my body.

First thing you do when you arrive back in London?

Go straight to my mum’s for a roast dinner, and eat the best roast potatoes in the world.

Animal you’d most like to be?

A butterfly. They are graceful and seem like really peaceful creatures that don’t have any cares. Not that I want to just float around looking beautiful, but you know what I mean.

Best meal?

I could give you a billion, but 805 on the Old Kent Road does fish the size of a laptop with plantain and yams and tiger prawns as big as your fist and it has a really good atmosphere.

Building you’d like to live in?

Anywhere really high up like the Shard. I love being able to look at a nice view.

Earliest London memory?

I was born in Crawley but we moved to London when I was three. I came to look at the new house with my mum and stepdad and I remember being on the Highgate Road and wanting to walk on a wall without holding their hands. I slipped and scraped the inside of my legs and my favourite red patent shoes.

What would you do if you were Mayor?  

Make all transport free, and not charge people for parking outside their own houses.

Where do you go to let your hair down?

The Rhum Shack in Angel, which is part of a West Indian restaurant called Cottons. It has a really old-school family vibe.

What do you collect?

Shells. I have them from every beach I have been to, and keep them in my bathroom.

Best advice you’ve been given?

Every other sentence my nan says is an old Jamaican saying. She has always urged me to listen to my inner voice, and tells me that you’ve got to be your own compass.

Biggest extravagance?

The only thing I’ve ever spent money on was a Mini convertible, but I don’t have it any more.

Favourite shops?

I hate shopping. If I need anything, I go to Brent Cross or Westfield because it’s easy, quick and has everything in one place. All Saints in Ladbroke Grove is good for clothes. I like The Hummingbird Bakery on Portobello Road for cakes. Around Ladbroke Grove there are lots of cool shops for vinyl that are good for a browse.

Have you ever had a run-in with a London policeman?

Yes, a long time ago and it’s not anything I’d like to go into.

Best place for a nightcap?

Balans in Soho, because when you get there at whatever o’clock in the morning there are lots of other drunk people.

Who do you call when you want to have fun?

I start a WhatsApp group message with my girls: my three sisters who are old enough to go clubbing, my four girl cousins and two best female friends.

Most romantic thing someone’s done for you?

Out of the blue an ex took me for a candlelit picnic on Parliament Hill.

Building you’d like to be locked in overnight?

If they would leave food ready for me, I’d fill Busaba Eathai near Tottenham Court Road with my friends for a party.

Last album you bought?

My brother Akala’s Knowledge is Power. It’s very deep and empowering.

Who’s your hero?

My ten-year-old son. As parents we are supposed to be the teachers, but quite early on I realised that he is here to teach me. He is very strong and open, caring and kind.

Ms Dynamite and Shy FX release their new single ‘Cloud 9’ on 23 September

via Ms Dynamite’s My London – ES Magazine – Life & Style – London Evening Standard.