The Scotsman Sessions #254: Ransom FA

Welcome to the award-winning Scotsman Sessions. With performing arts activity curtailed for the foreseeable future, we are commissioning a series of short video performances from artists all around the country and releasing them on scotsman.com, with introductions from our critics. Here, rapper Ransom FA performs Man of the Moment from his current Momentum EP

Nigerian-Scottish hip-hop artist Ransom FA has been rapping for the last decade but achieved nationwide visibility as a finalist in the first series of BBC Three talent search The Rap Game UK. He was then signed up alongside fellow contestant FOS (Freedom of Speech) to embark on The Rap Trip, a documentary road trip spotlighting the neglected grassroots hip-hop scenes around Britain and Ireland – something Ransom knows all about from his stomping ground of Aberdeen, rapping in the Scottish vernacular and bringing the grime to the Granite City.

“When I went on [The Rap Game] that was the main thing that made me stand out,” he has reflected. “I feels like when you’re doing music you need to embrace your authenticity.”

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Ransom has subsequently established a studio in Aberdeen, Ransom HQ, to address the lack of hip-hop infrastructure in the city and encourage young rappers in the area, with workshops in schools a future aspiration.

Ransom FA

He will also kick off Scotland’s first ever hip-hop and grime conference at the end of July, discussing the history of Scottish hip-hop with his fellow Scot-hop screen star Darren McGarvey. HANG (Hip-hop Aimed Networking with Grime) is a Scottish Alternative Music Awards initiative which takes place on 31 July with free online workshops throughout the day from the likes of Empress and Steg G on the hip-hop pillars of breakdancing, DJing and MCing, plus the premiere of new work from graffiti artist Rogue One and a live showcase in the evening featuring 2020 Scottish Album of the Year Award winner Nova and Ayrshire rapper Bemz.

Fittingly, Ransom’s Scotsman Session, filmed in his mate's bedroom in London (where he is now based), is a rendition of Man of the Moment from his current Momentum EP, and was chosen “as it celebrates how far we've come.”

Momentum is out now on Ransom Records. HANG takes place online and at SWG3, Glasgow on 31 July, see https://www.officialsama.com/hang

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