Interview with Lowkey

Hive writers, Warda Yassin and Dominic Heslop, were lucky enough to bag a brilliant food-for-thought interviewed with English-Iraqi hip-hop artist, Lowkey, on his fleeting ‘In conversation’ visit to SHU uny recently.

Lowkey, whose real name is Kareem Dennis, is not only known these days for his powerful tracks that pack a social and political punch, he’s also a thought-provoking and vastly knowledgeable public speaker and activist.

Unsurprisingly, this is a richly layered delve into everything from language as an emancipatory tool and how its etymology can trace a different story of historical power in the world, to classism towards rap as poetry, and the responsibility of writers. Lowkey also discussed the tracks Ahmed and Ghosts of Grenfell

“When it gets to the point where you realise people are listening to you… Talib Kweli  has the lyrics – What you gonna do when you gotta face the manifestation of the words that you put in space – we can’t underestimate the power of mood music and cultural ambience.” – Lowkey

Big thanks to Lowkey for making time for us! And to the wonderful Bob Jeffery and Abdullah Okud at Sheffield Hallam University, and to Warda Yassin and Dominic Heslop for a wonderful interview and conversation, and to young photographer Oscar Barnes @oscargottalens