- Hosted by award-winning presenter Gemma Cairney
- Performances from Dizzee Rascal MBE, Frisco, Henry Stone, Jelani Blackman, Lavida Loca, Mysie, Nubya Garcia, Skengdo x AM, Yola
- Featuring appearances from Allan Wilmot, Eddie Capone, George The Poet, Kwame Kwaten, Linton Kwesi Johnson, Rhoda Dakar
PRS for Music, in collaboration with its charity partner PRS Foundation, has announced the full line-up for PRS Presents Black History Month. Hosted by award-winning presenter Gemma Cairney, the virtual show will celebrate songwriters and composers alongside appearances from legendary pioneers and thinkers from the Black community.
Taking place on Thursday 22 October from 7pm,viewers can watch PRS Presents Black History Month for free on the PRS for Music website (prsformusic.com/presents). BRIT Award-winner Dizzee Rascal MBE and PRS Foundation supported rappers Lavida Loca and Skengdo x AM will all take to the virtual stage, alongside George the Poet, who will be introducing newcomer to the spoken word scene, Henry Stone.
Others previously announced to perform on the night, in never-before-seen footage from their homes and studios, include PRS Foundation supported artists Grammy nominee Yola, producer and Boy Better Know member Frisco and saxophonist Nubya Garcia, alongside rapper and singer Jelani Blackman and Ivor Novello award-winner, Mysie.
The show will also feature a series of short documentary-style films including Jamaican dub poet and activist Linton Kwesi Johnson and singer Allan Wilmot talking to songwriter Eddie Capone about the phenomenal impact the Windrush generation had on shaping Black music and culture in Britain, and British songwriter Rhoda Dakar delving into the history of Brixton’s underground club scene.
Kwaku, founder of British Black Music and Black Music Congress, will bring to life the history of Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, the world-famous Black British classical composer and activist, whose plight led to the creation of the Performing Right Society in the early 20th century.
Ferocious Management and Cre8ing Vision founder, Kwame Kwaten, will shine a light on the vital work grassroot organisations are doing across the UK to support creativity, instigate change and promote equality and equity within the music industry. Small Green Shoots and People Dem Collective are just some of those organisations transforming emerging talent into successful careers.
Throughout October, M magazine is celebrating Black History Month with guest editor takeovers. Contributors include London-based music journalist, singer and guitarist in Black feminist punk band Big Joanie, Stephanie Phillips; music archivist and broadcaster, Jesse Bernard; award-winning singer-songwriter, lecturer and PRS Foundation Trustee Michelle Escoffery, and Ben Wynter, PRS Foundation’s Industry Funds Grants and Programmes Manager and founder of Unstoppable Music Group.
PRS for Music CEO, Andrea C. Martin, said: “We are incredibly proud to have such a great line-up of songwriters, voices and organisations join us for this special edition of PRS Presents. While we continually celebrate the talent and development of our diverse membership with the support of PRS Foundation, Black History Month is an important moment in the calendar year to reflect, listen and pay respect to the Black music community and beyond as we build towards a more inclusive future for all.”
PRS Foundation CEO, Joe Frankland said: “We’re delighted to be partnering with PRS for Music for this very special PRS Presents celebrating Black History Month featuring the brilliant PRS Foundation supported artists Skengdo x AM, Yola, Frisco, Lavida Loca and Nubya Garcia. We’re proud to play our part in supporting talented Black music creators and Black-led organisations through our funding programmes and we are committed to standing against anti-Black racism, breaking down barriers and powering up Black talent.”
PRS for Music member and PRS Foundation supported artist, Lavida Loca, said: “I’m excited to be part of the incredible line-up for PRS Presents celebrating Black History Month. This year has been a tough one without live gigs, but it’s great that we can get together virtually for a show that highlights the Black community, and the talented musicians within it.”
PRS for Music represents the rights of over 150,000 songwriters, composers and music publishers in the UK and around the world. PRS Foundation is the UK’s leading charitable funder of new music and talent development. Since 2000 PRS Foundation has given more than £35 million to over 7,300 new music initiatives by awarding grants and leading partnership programmes that support music sector development.
PRS Presents Black History Month will also take place on PRS for Music’s YouTube channel, from 7pm on Thursday 22 October. Watch here.