Jasmine’s Juice – speaking to Godfather of grime- Wiley!

He’s one of the most influential characters in British music today.

The sound that Wiley created in East London at the turn of this century – which eventually became known as Grime – has now reached global popularity.

But whilst his peers achieved huge chart success, he has been known as the driving force behind the scenes.

In his autobiography ‘Eskiboy’ released 31 October, he describes a life of underground creativity, drugs, pirate radio and a feud with fellow grime star Dizzee Rascal.

Here i spoke to him in his only UK TV exclusive, in-depth interview, on the eve of the release of his book ESKIBOY.

Jasmine speaks to Wiley – CLICK HERE.

Jasmine’s Juice- In conversation with Wiley for Channel 4 News.

He’s one of the most influential characters in British music today.


The sound that Wiley created in East London at the turn of this century – which eventually became known as Grime – has now reached global popularity. But whilst his peers achieved huge chart success, he has been known as the driving force behind the scenes. In his autobiography ‘Eskiboy’ released 31 October, he describes a life of underground creativity, drugs, pirate radio and a feud with fellow grime star Dizzee Rascal.

Here is Wiley in conversation with me, exclusively for Channel 4 News.

Jasmine’s Juice -BRIT Awards to Fund Ten Golden Tickets to Work in the Music Industry

Who doesn’t want to work in the music industry? you? Then this is not for you. Go away and come back another time.
However, if this IS YOU- read on baby- your time has come!

Today a New BRITs Apprentice Scheme invites applications from young talent keen to work at a music company!

Talented youngsters will get the chance to kick start their careers in the recorded music industry thanks to a new apprenticeship scheme created by the BPI and funded by money raised by the BRIT Awards.

The BRITs Apprentice Scheme will give ten young people from England and Wales a unique, high quality, paid opportunity to work at a top independent record label or music company, learn about the recorded music industry, receive practical ‘hands on’ experience, develop relevant skills and make key contacts.

The scheme was devised by UK record labels association the BPI, which owns and runs The BRIT Awards and which also developed its charitable arm, The BRIT Trust.

Apprenticeships are an important way to help bring in new and diverse talent into the industry and are in line with the Government’s commitment to education, skills and training.

The scheme will be open to individuals aged 18 and over. Successful applicants will be matched with independent record labels and music companies who are members of the BPI. They will receive specialist training in either business administration or digital marketing.

The BRITs Apprentice Scheme will start in January 2018 and last 14 months up to the end of February 2019, and it is hoped will then lead to further employment opportunities in the industry. The successful candidates will also have an opportunity to experience working at The BRIT Awards.

The deadline for applications is 17th November 2017, and the BPI/BRIT Trust organisers are calling on interested applicants to apply as soon as possible. Full details are available on The BRIT Trust website here.

There will be six places for candidates in London and four outside, covering Wales, Birmingham, Norwich and Leicester. In London the salary will be £18k and outside it will be £15k to reflect lower living costs. The BRIT Trust will fund two thirds of each salary – leaving the participating companies to cover the remaining third (approx. £5k or £6k).

Ten music companies drawn from across the vibrant independent community – ranging from record labels and digital distributors to vinyl and CD manufacturers and streaming app services – have signed up to take on an apprentice. See Notes to Editors for details.

The Scheme will be overseen by the BPI, while its day-to-day operation will be provided by DiVA – the recruitment and training organisation specialising in business, creative and digital apprenticeships, whose experienced experts have a successful track record in delivering apprentices in the creative industries.

Geoff Taylor, Chief Executive BPI & BRIT Awards, said:

“Everyone connects the BRIT Awards with the best of British music and with dynamic young talent, so it’s right that, through its charitable arm The BRIT Trust, the BRITs brand should demonstrate the value of music by giving music fans with exciting potential a major opportunity to get into the industry they love. These apprenticeships are like golden tickets and will open up a range of opportunities for ten talented individuals who are passionate about working at a record label or in a music company.”

The Scheme will be funded via The BRIT Trust, which distributes money raised by The BRIT Awards and other industry events to promote education and wellbeing through music. The BRIT Trust has to date awarded millions of Pounds to range of charities and good causes, principally The BRIT School, which it helped to set up, East London Arts and Music (ELAM), Nordoff Robbins music therapy, War Child, Key4Life, and other to organisations, including the addictions and mental health charity Music Support.

John Craig OBE, Chairman of The BRIT Trust, said:

“It is a key part of The BRIT Trust’s mission to help young people through music and we have already done a huge amount of work through The BRIT School, Nordoff Robbins and other charities that promote education and wellbeing through music. We’re delighted to be able to support The BRITs Apprentice Scheme to give talented young people the opportunity and practical training that could help change their lives.”

Arit Eminue, Director DiVA, said:

“DiVA is delighted to collaborate with the BRIT Trust and BPI in the delivery of the BRITs Apprentice Scheme, which opens the gates of the music industry to the next generation of music talent.

“DiVA is a bridge between the creative industry and talent. We have a wealth of experience of apprenticeship development and delivery that supports workforce diversity, talent retention and skills development. We’re excited to meet and look forward to supporting the golden tickets holders in the development of their careers.”


The MOBO AWARDS 2017 TAKES PLACE AT LEEDS FIRST DIRECT ARENA ON WEDNESDAY 29 NOVEMBER and today in London’s YouTube headquarters they announced this year’s nominees.

At the modern tech visual building with huge TV screens showcasing previous MOBO AWARDS and an array of champagne, wine, mango mojitos, jollof rice and chicken served in martini cocktail glasses, king prawn platters, MOBO logo cupcakes, fruit kebabs and more, the industry celebrated it’s success’.


In the vicinity were R&B powerhouse Shakka, Nadia Rose, Birminghams Lotto Boyyz, Manchester’s Bugzy Malone, London’s J Hus, model and activist Munroe Bergdorf and more.



Performing onstage briefly were Nadia Rose and Lotto Boyyz – both acts i love and predict – should all go well in their destiny- should be huge!
I also bumped into So Solid legend Lisa Maffia and her daughter who is all grown up now!




Stormzy has been on a steady crescendo of success since picking up the MOBO Award for Best Grime Act in 2014 and 2015, and Best Male in 2015. The MC references the moment he saw Krept & Konan win Best Newcomer at the 2013 MOBO Awards as the tipping point that pushed him to quit his job at an oil refinery and pursue a full-time career in music. He tweeted, ‘Krept & Konan just won a MOBO, I’m going studio.’

Fast forward four years from that moment and Stormzy’s debut album “Gang Signs & Prayer” has topped the UK Album Chart – becoming the first Grime album in history to reach #1. According to the OfficialCharts.com, it is also the biggest independent album of 2017 so far with over 220,000 sales. Stormzy has to date clocked up over 197 million views on his YouTube channel, 37 million of which are for the ‘Big For Your Boots’ music video directed by Daps.


After two years of solid underground appeal, East London rapper J Hus has broken through in a big way, picking up four nominations for Best Male, Best Album for “Common Sense”, Best Song for ‘Did You See’ and Best Video for ‘Spirit’. The 21-year old MC hit MOBO’s radar two years ago, which earned him a prestigious nomination in the Best Newcomer category and he followed up last year with a Best Song nod for ‘Friendly’. “Common Sense” – J Hus’ debut album – reached #6 on the UK Album Charts earlier this year and features the Top 10 hit ‘Did You See’, which has also amassed over 42 million views on YouTube.

Hotly tipped R&B singer Jorja Smith picks up three prestigious nominations for Best Female, Best R&B/Soul Act and Best Newcomer. In the last 12 months, the 20-year old singer-songwriter from Walsall has featured on Drake’s hit album “More Life” and even supported him on his UK tour. Her recent garage-infused banger with Preditah ‘On My Mind’ earned her rave reviews from music press far and wide.

Rising rap star Stefflon Don makes her MOBO debut with three nods in major categories for Best Female, Best Hip Hop Act and Best Newcomer. Mercury Prize winner Sampha receives three nominations for Best Male, Best R&B/Soul Act and Best Album for his critically acclaimed debut “Process”.

My melodic heroine Jill Scott announced nominees for the Best R&B/Soul Award. Watch here! JILL SCOTT ANNOUNCES MOBO NOMS

Mayor Sadiq Khan announced the nominees for the Best Male Act! Watch here; SADIQ KHAN ANNOUNCES BEST MALE.

One thing that excited me was the announcement that from next year there will be a BEST PRODUCER category. Wit the incredible production talent in the UK this is a good move!

For Londoners interested in the specialist categories devoted to jazz, gospel, R&B/Soul categories –The third annual Pre-MOBO Awards Show – will be hosted in London soon. More details to come.



Bugzy Malone




J Hus

Maleek Berry






Emeli Sandé

Jessie Ware

Jorja Smith

Lady Leshurr

Little Simz


Nadia Rose



Stefflon Don


J Hus – Common Sense

Nines – One Foot Out

Sampha – Process

Stormzy – Gang Signs & Prayer

Wretch 32 – Growing Over Life



Jorja Smith

Kojo Funds

Lotto Boyzz

Loyle Carner




Stefflon Don

Yxng Bane


J Hus “Did You See”

(Produced by JAE5)

Kojo Funds Feat. Abra Cadabra “Dun Talkin’”

(Produced by GA)

Not3s “Addison Lee”

(Produced by Malv On The Track)

Stormzy “Big For Your Boots”

(Produced by Sir Spyro & Fraser T Smith)

Yungen Feat. Yxng Bane “Bestie)

(Produced by ADP)


Bossman Birdie “Walk The Walk”

(Directed by Luke Davies)

J Hus “Spirit”

(Directed by Hugo Jenkins)

Loyle Carner “The Isle Of Arran”

(Directed by Georgia Hudson)

Mist “Hot Property”

(Directed by Oliver Jennings)

Stormzy “Big For Your Boots”

(Directed by Daps)



Little Simz

Loyle Carner


Stefflon Don

Wretch 32


AJ Tracey


P Money





Supported by Mi-Soul

Craig David

Jorja Smith





Cardi B

DJ Khaled


Jay Z

Kendrick Lamar


Solange Knowles


Travis Scott






Maleek Berry

Mr Eazi



Tiwa Savage

Wande Coal






Damian Marley



Supported by Jazz FM

Cleveland Watkiss

Daymé Arocena

Moses Boyd

Mr Jukes

Terrace Martin


Supported by Premier Gospel

Lurine Cato

Mali Music


Triple O

Volney Morgan & New-Ye


Jasmine’s Juice – Can Music Make You Sick?

I’ve worked in the music / media industry for two decades. It’s an incredible industry that we all feel blessed to work in, but everyone will tell you that working in music can be perilous for your health and well being. I’ve lost count how many musician friends are depressed, anxious, total wrecks at various times throughout their careers.
It’s time to talk about whether a career in music can – if you don’t have enough support- and a thick enough skin- sick!

The country’s leading independent music charity, Help Musicians UK (HMUK), today released the final report and findings of Can Music Make You Sick? and announced three key pledges for the music industry.

CMMYS headline findings

Music makers’ relationship to their work is integral to their sense of self. It’s how they define themselves.

People in the music industry need to believe in themselves and in their work, yet the unpredictable nature of the business can knock that belief.

Music makers can be reflective and highly self-critical, and exist in an environment of constant critical feedback.

A career in music is often precarious and unpredictable.

Many musicians have several different jobs as part of a portfolio career, and as a result can feel as though they work 24/7 and can’t take a break.

It can be hard for musicians to admit to insecurities because of competition and wanting to appear on top of things.

Family, friends and partners play an important role in supporting musicians, but this can also lead to feelings of guilt.

Musicians’ working environment can be anti-social and unsympathetic, with some people experiencing sexual abuse, harassment, bullying and coercion.

Musicians can find it hard to access affordable professional help for mental health issues.

As many musicians are self-employed, they can feel on their own when it comes to dealing with mental health problems.

There needs to be a drive to improve working conditions across the music industries and to enhance understanding of the challenges faced by creative workers.

More work is required to explore how discrimination, sexism and diversity impact on the working climate for musicians.

HMUK pledged to establish a Music Industry Mental Health Taskforce, to lead the drive for change across the industry as well as launching a landmark 24/7 mental health service ‘Music Minds Matter’ for anyone working in the music industry by December 2017 This final pledge combines clinical and therapeutic help, grant funding and bespoke legal, welfare, debt and benefits advice.

HMUK, who have been serving the music industry for 96 years, originally commissioned Can Music Make You Sick? in 2016. This is the world’s largest known academic study into music and mental health and was a survey of over 2,200 musicians —revealing that the music community may be up to three times more likely to experience depression compared to the general public.

The research provided crucial insight into the scale of the problem of musician’s mental health challenges, how this can be further impacted by a career in music, to find out how the charity can help and support those that need it most in the music community.

This new and final study, undertaken by researchers Sally Gross and Dr. George Musgrave of the University of Westminster and published by MusicTank, asked the music community how their working conditions have impacted on their mental health and general wellbeing and comprises semi-structured interviews of 26 respondents from a broad cross section of the industry. The participants stem from the initial 2016 survey.

As well as making the three headline pledges, today HMUK has revealed the key insights and recommendations from the report:

Research key insights:

Money worries – A career in music is often precarious and unpredictable. Many musicians have several different jobs as part of a portfolio career, and as a result get little time to take a break. Musicians can also find it hard to access affordable professional help for mental health issues.
Poor working conditions – Music makers can be reflective and highly self-critical, and exist in an environment of constant critical feedback. As many musicians are self-employed, their work can result in feelings of isolation when it comes to dealing with mental health problems.
Relationship challenges – Family, friends and partners play an important role in supporting musicians, but these relationships can come under huge pressure and strain.
Sexual abuse/bullying/discrimination – Musicians’ working environment can be anti-social and unsympathetic, with some experiencing sexual abuse, harassment, bullying and coercion.

Summary of recommendations:

Education – Discussion of mental health awareness should be embedded in curriculum in music education courses and wider discussion should be stimulated in the industry with working musicians.
A code of best practice – Allied to a commitment of kindness and tolerance, to act as voluntary demonstration of an organisation’s awareness of mental health issues in the music industry and an understanding of the challenges faced by creative workers.
A mental health support service for music community – professional mental health services that are affordable and accessible.

HMUK’s Three Key Pledges:

Building a music industry Mental Health Taskforce – with key partners and stakeholders, to be a forum for discussion with the industry to establish a code of best practice and duty of care within the industry
Deliver a nationwide support service – This will take the form of Music Minds Matter, the unique new 24/7 mental health service to launch December 2017, to be shaped and defined in partnership with the industry
Advocate for change across the industry – Ignite support in the UK and globally for Music Minds Matter with key industry partnerships and collaborations

Christine Brown, Director of External Affairs, HMUK said: “HMUK is uniquely placed to commission and share the results of this important, game-changing study. The charity granted nearly two million pounds last year to those that need it most in the industry, so it is a natural step to examine the key issues and make a call to action to help implement wider, lasting change in the industry, namely HMUK’s three key pledges.

“The British music industry is in rude health and has a world class reputation – but to continue the long-term wellbeing of the industry and its workers, we aim to create a constructive forum for discussion, partnership and collaboration.

“Through the new Music Minds Matter service, we are closer to providing the crucial support, advice and education the music community desperately needs. Together we can continue to chip away at the stigma, so that in the long term those working in the community never have to suffer in silence.”

Researchers Sally Gross and Dr. George Musgrave said: “This research is a crucial step forward in our understanding of the complex relationship between the working conditions of musicians and mental health conditions. The honesty and poignancy of our interviewees has made possible this important work, and informed the service provision being implemented by Help Musicians UK, and for that we are truly thankful. We welcome the new service Music Minds Matter and hope that this research can spark a wider debate both in the music industry about the welfare of those at its heart, and more generally about the challenging nature of precarious work.”

HMUK Trustee Baroness Judith Jolly added “This is one of the most ground-breaking and important projects that the charity has undertaken in its 96-year history. The HMUK Trustees are delighted and are in full support of this life changing research and the launch of the Music Minds Matter service. I call for the industry to engage with and support the report’s recommendations, especially at this time when there is a clear and urgent need for change.”

HMUKs summary reports of Can Music Make You Sick can be downloaded for viewing online here.

Both academic studies – pilot survey and report may be read in full here:

About Help Musicians UK

Help Musicians UK (HMUK) is the leading independent music charity. Since 1921, HMUK has provided help, support and opportunities to empower musicians at all stages of their lives.

HMUK’s mission is to create a sustainable future for all musicians and the industry. The charity works in partnership to transform the music industry through advocacy, campaigning, solutions and targeted investment for all those within it.

During 2016, HMUK’s Health and Welfare team experiences a 22 per cent increase in requests for help from musicians across the UK, and in total last year, the charity spent £1.9 million helping these musicians through direct and indirect financial support.

In July 2017, HMUK announced #MusicMindsMatter – a new campaign for music industry-wide support of a forthcoming, dedicated 24/7 support line and service for people working in music. The #MusicMindsMatter campaign launched with the funding platform at www.virginmoneygiving.com/fund/MusicMindsMatter

The announcement of the campaign saw HMUK call for ‘arm in arm’ support from the industry and philanthropists to match its investment pound for pound, as a response to the tragic, untimely death of Linkin Park lead singer Chester Bennington. The #MusicMindsMatter campaign will fund the ground-breaking 24/7 mental health service of the same name, launching December 2017, that will combine listening, advice and signposting with clinical, medical, therapeutic and welfare support for those who need it. Just doubling the £100k HMUK investment, with a minimum of £200k, will allow the mental health service to be sustainable beyond 2018. The charity can then continue to proactively raise money for the new fund, with ambitions to work with global partners in the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand to continue the campaign and underpin a global approach to the mental wellbeing of the music industry.

Jasmine’s Juice – Kidzania London, Life Changing For Kids…and Adults.

Kidzania is quite simply one of the best paid for educational theme parks for kids I’ve ever experienced. (I suggested we take a friend’s 8-year-old nephew there whilst he was in town from NYC).

With locations globally, the London one resides in the roof of Westfield London in White City and is a genius concept.

Visually it’s like a mini Vegas stylewise. With no windows or clocks you can forget the outside world and focus on this mini city for kids.

Even on entrance you are ushered into a red carpeted airport style gate and through “immigration” to arrive up escalators to a new young world.

Parents can accompany their kids or leave them there for a maximum of four hours. There are no security issues as each young person is tagged on entry so they are unable to leave without their parent or guardian.

Each kid is handed a fistful of kidzo’s cash. They will able to earn more in some jobs (like window cleaning) and pay for others (like a TV preseneters stint).

The city consists of every possible business type you can think of. Mini pop-up versions of a fire station, police station and hospital where kids can try a taster session of what it might be like to actually work there, why they are important and get hands-on with specific skills.

You see the firemen donning fire suits and rushing to an emergency.

Nurses are taught how to manage new born babies and police are catching criminals and keeping the city safe.

The fascinating thing is the canny marketing by your average high street brand. The chocolate factory is sponsored and led by Cadbury. The TV studio by Al Jazeera. The newspaper print press by The Metro.

Innocent smoothies teach ethical food sourcing. Disney teach animation with their characters attracting line upon line of eager queuing kids.

There are air conditioning technicians crawling through ceiling vents and absailing kids dangling from high walls.

Interestingly, when we took my friends nephew was that initially he wasn’t keen to try window cleaning, didn’t mind the bank, loved the animation. However he quickly changed his mind on the menial window cleaning when he learnt how much extra kidzo’s cash he could make.

Who cares about fake cash you ask? Well the brill thing is, at the end of the kidzania experience they can spend their fake cash on actual real stuff in the shop. A great life lesson. Work hard and buy what you like.

Each session takes between 20-30 minutes and it’s a good idea to get there really early as it can get very busy in the afternoon.

Each session saw enthusiastic kids engaging with practical tasks. The jealousy factor was great in me. Adults aren’t able to join in but we are able to act as extras. For example on the football pitch we can sit in the stands and cheer.

A truly fascinating way that young people aged 4-14 can experience a job, try lots of industries and get that employment gene kicking in early.
All kids should have to do this before actually being let loose in real-time work experience situations.

I can’t recommend it enough. I hear they occasionally do adult evenings with a glass of wine. I’ve signed up.

Here are my friends thoughts on it;

Six weeks school holiday is a loooong time to keep a child entertained. When my little person asked if he could hang out with Auntie Jasmine again it’s because he knows hanging out with Auntie Jas is always FUN.
I didn’t really know what KIDZANIA was when she suggested I take my favourite 8 year old there. Tucked away an a part of Westfield that I didn’t even know existed, it really was like stepping into another world. A world where where children learn about different occupations experientially – but that doesn’t really do this gem of an idea any justice. As we entered the check in zone, it was clear a lot of thought had gone into the experience. The boarding pass-like tickets and airport style departure lounge with the equally authentic long line to the check in desk built the excitement of travelling to a magical destination. My little man was gifted 50 kidzos to spend (currency not unlike Monopoly money) before we walked through the door an into a cute mini-world where children indeed came first. It’s also reassuringly safe as all children are fitted with an electronic tag meaning if they lose you in the way they usually do when they lose their minds with excitement, they can be easily found. It also means they can’t leave Kidzania without the adult they arrived with – so you can lose a kid without actually losing them!
It’s structured as a mini city with a supermarket, hospital, fire station, bank, university, dentist and sports stadium amongst the attractions. Children are paid for jobs and they can either use that currency to pay for activities or save it in the bank – ready to withdraw for a later visit. Big brands too have seen the benefit – Al Jazeera is the local TV channel, BA teaches about being cabin crew and Cadbury has a chocolate kitchen and Pokemon has an animation suite. But despite the glamour of the H&M fashion studio or the excitement of being in the back of a fire engine, the job my nephew chose as his favourite was … the window cleaner .. because at 12 kidzos for 15mins, it paid the most! And herein lies one the best ways to teach children about money. You have to work to pay for the things you want, but rather than being told, they experienced it for themselves. If my little one wanted to have a drumming lesson that cost 8kidzos, off he went to do a stint of window-cleaning to pay for it. Your time in Kidzania is limited to 4 hours which sounds like a long time, until you see the queues of up to 20mins for the most popular jobs which is like forever if you’re 8. Adults have to wait outside each attraction, so if jostling with parents taking pics through the window isn’t your thing there’s an adult zone tucked away on the upper level where you can take a moments break should you wish. There are tales from Kidzanias around the world that children have pursued careers after learning about it in this mini-city. For my little one, whilst he hasn’t abandoned his desire to be a marine biologist, for a career as window cleaner, as he excitedly recounted his day with his Dad, it was clear that that this was by far the highlight of his summer, earning Auntie Jas ‘Cool Auntie’ status. Result!

Jasmine’s Juice -Ironik’s new track with Snoop Dogg titled ‘Tuff’.

West coast legend Snoop Dogg has just collaborated with North London grime M.C, Ironik.

I’ve known Snoop since he gave me my very first interview in L.A outside a court that was deciding his fate after a murder case in the early Nineties.

I’ve known Ironik since he shot to fame as a 19 year old, initially as a DJ and producer, where he worked closely with the likes of UK stars Tinie Tempah and Chip, and then he made his debut as an artist releasing the video for ‘So Nice’ on seminal music station Channel U.

The video spelled the start of something big for Ironik and whilst being taken under the wing of the grime scene, his music often portrayed a softer edge to other acts tinged with R&B, Hip-Hop and UK Garage, something which clearly resonated well with music lovers and those discovering Ironik as his second release, ‘Stay With Me’ landed him a number 5 official chart position. From there on in his successes grew resulting in a further top 5 single, one top 10 single, a top 10 album, and over a million record sales.

The video led to him being taken under the wing of the grime scene but his music often portrayed a softer edge to other acts, tinged with R&B, Hip-Hop and UK Garage, something which clearly resonated well with music lovers and those discovering Ironik as his second release, ‘Stay With Me’ landed him a number 5 official chart position and from there on in his successes grew, resulting in a further top 5 single, one top 10 single, a top 10 album, and over a million record sales.

‘Tuff’ is exactly what it says on the tin. With a big reverberating bassline rumbling through the depths of this fresh joint, the pair drop the record as the first record from Ironik’s forthcoming album ‘Truth be Told’, set for release on the 22nd September alongside a live launch show at The Bull Theatre in Barnet, North London.

“’Truth Be Told’ is only my second studio album since my first ‘No Point In Wasting Tears’ and it’s definitely my best work to date.” says Ironik of the album. “I’ve been all over the world in the last two years DJ’ing in countries like Dubai, Japan and all over Europe and its undoubtedly inspired my music but there’s no place like home and whilst I reflect the influences I’ve had, the album remains a testament to being UK and homegrown.’

Check out the link to stream ‘Tuff’ below.



apple music“>APPLE MUSIC

Jasmine’s Juice – The First Black Magic Awards 2017!

This weekend just gone, I was honoured to be awarded an honour at the very first BLACK MAGIC AWARDS.

I am sure they said it was for ”women of colour’ just because of my inclusion,(and for that i am very grateful and humbled), or else it would have been ”black women”.

The night saw 12 inspirational women honoured at the first annual Black Magic Awards, which took place at Hackney Empire. The awards were founded to celebrate the women who have contributed to the black entertainment, sports, business and community scene.

Hosted by entertainer Eddie Kadi and America’s Next Top Model contestant Annaliese Dayes, it was a night of true magic with performances from the likes of MOBO Award winning singers Rachel Kerr and Lurine Cato, 8-year-old viral dance sensation Princess K and a guest appearance from model Munroe Bergdrof and rapper Stormzy.


I was lucky enough to awarded the INFLUENCE AWARD and it was presented to me by model Munroe.

There had been a couple of online comments challenging my presence on the list of black women so i thought it best to acknowledge this is my speech with some context.


Good evening everyone!
Thank you all so much for coming this evening. Its not often we all have an excuse to celebrate just women, and also thank you so much for having me.
It’s such a privilege sharing this stage with the rest of the ladies being honored here tonight.

I am here today, having the great honour to speak to you all, because I am good at surviving.
People tell me that I have succeeded despite the odds, but I correct them, and explain that being a woman of colour has always been my biggest strength – not hindrance!

Furthermore, whilst I am a woman of colour, I know many wouldn’t count me as a black woman.
So I do know just how blessed I am, to even be amongst the list of incredible women, being honoured here this evening.
I know that some people will feel that I don’t belong here. I also know from looking at a couple of comments online, that for some people, my being here is controversial. And I understand that.

Being of both African and Persian/ Zoroastrian heritage, I’ve never really been accepted as a part of any culture, but as a child growing up in Southall and Harlesden, where the Asian and white families mostly shunned me, it was ONLY the black community who welcomed me unconditionally – …so long as ….
I always said good morning, good afternoon, and good evening, as I entered and left my friends homes, that’s all their parents required of me- good manners! So essentially, that’s how you guys ended up, unknowingly, adopting me!

Every blessing I have had in my career in TV, radio, print press and more, has come via your teaching and influence, and my passion for your culture. That’s why at any given opportunity I give back.

You have the warmest, most welcoming ancestry, full of heart, soul and strength. It’s the reason the world gravitates throughout history, (past, present and future), towards black culture and it’s trends.

Throughout my career, I have been blessed to have been able to champion, so many of the women on this stage, and I want to thank them in turn for supporting me.
Sisterhood is a two-way street, and as some of you know, if we are friends-I am ride or die with my loyalty.

The women being celebrated here this evening are all incredible, groundbreaking leaders, who have moved the conversation forwards for future generations. And For that I salute them.

Actually being really real, this award means the world to me, as its not often we get recognized by mainstream awards ceremonies, but my feeling is, as all the trends start in this community, it means even more to know its this brand that has recognized me.

I dedicate this award to all the outstanding women who have supported me over the years, and to the women of our future, who will be even more spectacular!

Once again, I thank you from the bottom of my heart, for adopting and accepting me as one of your own.
I will continue to shine a light on as much as I can, and fight for social equality, equal opportunities and justice for us all.
I’m so grateful to you and hope to never let you all down.

Finally, they say that the journey of a thousand miles begins with just one step. I was only ever trained in TV, never trained in radio, writing columns and more…but i am managing to do it all…but I say that…The secret of getting ahead is simply getting started….And Black Magic Awards – you have started on your road to greatness!

Thank you all for listening, have a great night!

Here is a list of all the winners.

• MEDIA MOGUL Sponsored by Palmer’s – VANESSA KINGORI
• THE TRIBUTE AWARD Sponsored by Palmer’s – JAMELIA
• MUSIC Sponsored by Palmer’s – MIS-TEEQ

My two fave moments were when my girl Angie Le Mar was awarded, the things that she has achieved and broken down doors for so others could follow in her footsteps are spectacular!


Another big moment was when Stormzy presented the last award of the night to one of his idols, legendary radio DJ Jenny Francis, who featured on an interlude on the rappers hit album Gang Signs and Prayer earlier this year.


With over 20 years in the business, the Heart FM DJ, was honoured with the ‘Radio Personality’ award and the show’s organisers thought that there was no one better to present the award to her.

Hollyoaks’ Duyane Boachie “A childhood hero to so many of us, introduced me to R&B as a kid. 27 years of radio, more than deserved” the rapper tweeted to his fans alongside a photo of himself and the winner.


the Actress award to Coronation Street and Waterloo Road star Angela Griffin and Casulty star Charles Venn presented the Media Mogul Award to GQ Publisher Vanessa Kingori MBE.

Jamelia, Alesha Dixon’s Mis-Teeq’s, TV presenter Charlene White, England footballer Rachel Yankey, entertainer Angie Le Mar, music artist Eve and Beverley De Gale from the charity ACLT were also honoured on the night.

The Colour Network founders and organisers of the BLACK MAGIC AWARDS, -KOJO AND ANNIKA – did an amazing job, with a great buzz at the very first launch event and it will no doubt be a HUGE presence on the annual red carpet calendar!

“Despite their contribution and achievements, some of the women we honoured this year have never been properly recognised,” said Kojo Anim, Founder of The Colour Network. He continues, “However, rather than dwelling on it, we wanted to make a change and shine some much needed light on these amazing women.”


Others in attendance and gracing the black carpet on the night included; Actors Fab Santino, Femi Oyeniran and Adam Deacon, music talent The Katanas, Magic FM’s Angie Greaves, Big Brother personalities Deborah Agboola and Hannah Agboola plus many more.

“The evening consisted of motivating and encouraging words from the honourees and featured captivating performances,’ says The Colour Network co-founder Annika Allen. ‘It was an inspiring look for all women—especially black women who don’t get to see enough positive images of powerful women of colour in the media.

Jasmine’s Juice – BRITISH MUSIC EXPORTS RISE IN 2016 – #TeamUK Music Winning Globally!

· Overseas earnings by UK record labels up 11% to £365 million last year.

· International revenues climb 72.3% this decade, adding to an overall total of £4.4 billion earned by British artists and labels since the turn of the millennium.

· Adele, Coldplay, David Bowie & Rolling Stones led the way driving UK global sales in 2016.

· Ed Sheeran helping to set up another stellar international performance by UK acts in 2017.

Music body the BPI announced at its AGM in London today that British recorded music exports have risen to their highest levels this century, growing by over two thirds this decade and contributing nearly £4.4 billion to the UK’s overseas earnings since 2000.

Figures compiled by the BPI based on an annual survey of its record label members reveal that overseas earnings from recorded music rose by 11.1 per cent to £364.6 million in 2016, up by £36.4 million from £328.2 million in 2015. This is the strongest performance since the BPI began its annual survey in 2000 and represents an increase of £153 million on the £211.6 million recorded at the start of the decade – a rise of 72.3 per cent since 20101.

The growth reflects the enduring global appeal of British music, with UK artists accounting for one in every eight albums purchased around the world in 20162 and the UK continuing to punch above its weight as the world’s largest exporter of recorded music after the US.

With Ed Sheeran’s album Divide ÷ currently enjoying huge global success and major stars such as Little Mix, Rag‘n’Bone Man, Jonas Blue and Stormzy breaking through internationally, there is every possibility that 2016’s strong exports showing will be added to in 2017, not least as a new Sam Smith album is expected later this year among other key artist releases.

Announcing the rise in overseas music exports Geoff Taylor, Chief Executive BPI & BRIT Awards, said:

“With Britain leaving the EU, the UK needs businesses that are true global superstars. Music by brilliant British artists such as Ed Sheeran, Adele, David Bowie, Coldplay and Sam Smith is streamed and purchased the world over, boosting the UK’s balance of payments. The global digital streaming market represents a huge new opportunity. Government can help to seize that opportunity by making sure our artists can tour freely post-Brexit and that third countries robustly protect music rights.”

Matt Hancock, Minister of State for Digital at the Department for Digital, Culture, Sport & Media, said:

“This fantastic economic success is a huge testament to the UK music industry and the wealth of talent and creativity underpinning it. Not only is music a crucial factor in bringing international investment to our shores but it is also the introduction to British culture for many people around the world.”

Last year’s strong figures were fuelled by the phenomenal global demand for Adele’s 25 – released just six weeks earlier in November 2015 – as well as Coldplay’s album A Head Full of Dreams, which came out soon after in December 2015.
Another telling factor was the untimely passing of icon David Bowie in early 2016, which prompted a huge surge in demand for his repertoire of classic recordings. The Rolling Stones’ Blue & Lonesome, which was released in the last quarter of 2016, also performed notably in overseas markets for the UK alongside other titles by British artists.

The BPI figures reflect the long term investment in A&R by UK record labels, as they look to sign and develop outstanding new British music talent and promote it at home and around the world. UK record labels – ranging from the three so-called ‘majors’ Universal Music UK, Sony Music UK and Warner Music UK to hundreds of independent labels also represented by the BPI – typically invest on average around a quarter of their annual revenues into new music each year, comparing favourably with the ‘R&D’ spend of other industries, such as pharmaceuticals (13%) and the automotive sector (5%)3.

UK record company executives have become world-leaders in global digital marketing, supporting the dramatic rise in audio streaming, which in 2016 increased by 604 per cent worldwide. These new revenue channels combine with overseas earnings from sales of CDs, which remain remarkably resilient, vinyl and downloads to boost exports. The BPI data also includes income generated from PPL public performance royalties5, synchronisation (music for film/TV soundtracks and broadcast advertising), and other licensing income.

The contribution made by UK government funding to the success of British music around the world should also be acknowledged. Department for International Trade (DIT) funding of the Music Exports Growth Scheme (MEGS), for example, which the BPI manages, has made £2.3 million in grants available through the GREAT campaign to 150 mainly independent label-signed artists since January 2014. This investment helps UK acts to build their profile and fanbases in key overseas markets, and to date £10 of additional international earnings have been generated by the MEGS artists for every £1 invested6.

Government-backed international trade missions organised by the BPI with music partners such as the Association of Independent Music (AIM)7 and the Music Publishers Association (MPA)8 also play their part in promoting British music overseas. Recent missions include visits to growing markets such as China and India, with a trip to South Korea planned for later this month (24 Sep – 1 Oct), while the annual LA Sync mission9 and UK presence at MIDEM in France10 are key fixtures in the music industry calendar.

British music exports are strongest in North America and across Europe, although fast-emerging markets in Asia are becoming increasingly significant. The top five international territories for UK labels in 2016 were USA, Germany, France, Australia and Canada (see Notes for top 10)11.
BPI members are reporting gains in developing markets as varied as China, Turkey and South American territories, while India and South Korea also have the potential to become important overseas markets in future.

Jasmine’s Juice -The Chineke! Foundation, Championing change and celebrating diversity in classical music.

The great and good from the music world got together at the swanky Gore Hotel in Kensington last night, for a fancy dinner and then walked across the road to the Royal Albert Hall to enjoy a Prom.


Not just any old Prom, but a prom with a difference! This was Europe’s first majority Black & minority ethnic (BME) orchestra; & the youngest to take part in BBC Proms!!

In addition, we were also celebrating a new work commissioned for the Prom by BBC Radio 3, from composer Hannah Kendall, who recently has joined the PRS Foundation as trustee. We were all really excited to celebrate her Proms debut!

We were all gathered to celebrate The Chineke! Foundation, which was established in 2015, to provide career opportunities to young Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) classical musicians in the UK and Europe.

Set up by the inspirational Chi-chi Nwanoku OBE, Chineke!’s motto is: ‘Championing change and celebrating diversity in classical music’.

At the Royal Albert Hall, we thoroughly enjoyed The Chineke! Foundation Prom:
Guests who joined us for the Prom and dinner beforehand included;

Peter Leathem (CEO PPL)
Jonathan Badyal (Universal)
Ayesha Hazarika (BPI consultant and broadcaster)
Richard Thomas (Richard Thomas Foundation)
Caroline Norbury (PRS Foundation trustee)
Vanessa Reed (CEO PRS Foundation)
Naomi Belshaw (PRS Foundation Grants and Programmes Manager
Hannah Kendall (composer) and members of her family
Kanya King (MOBO Awards)
Kevin le Gendre (BBC Radio 3 Broadcaster)
Gillian Moore (Director of Music, Southbank centre)

Chineke! is the brainchild of renowned bassist, educator, and activist Chi-chi Nwanoku OBE, FRAM (Principal Double Bassist and co-founder of the Orchestra of the Age of the Enlightenment, Professor of Double Bass Historical Studies at the Royal Academy of Music), and is backed by key cultural organisations such as the British Council, Conservatoires UK and Southbank Centre.

Chi-chi Nwanoku OBE

The PRS Foundation have been doing some amazing work behind the scenes and have supported Chineke! in May 2017 through their International Development Funds to take the orchestra to the International conference ‘Classical NEXT’ in Rotterdam, where they opened the conference celebrating their championing diversity in the UK and showcasing the work of the wonderful UK Composer Errollyn Wallen.

Furthermore, Chineke! is currently being supported further for the same work, by Errollyn Wallen through the PRS Foundation’s Resonate programme, with a series of concerts in the UK through winter 2017.

Resonate is a fantastic new initiate from the PRS Foundation “Celebrating the best British orchestral repertoire of the last 25 years – a new scheme which invites orchestras from across the UK to perform and promote the best of British music written in the past 25 years.”