Mz Bratt is, without a doubt, one of the UK’s leading female MC’s who is well on her way to becoming the next big thing. Hailing from East London she first appeared on the scene alongside award winning grime producer Terror Danjah, since then she has gone on to star in T4’s reality show Music Cool as well as recently supporting N-Dubz on their UK tour. And, with the likes of Tinie Tempah and Roll Deep becoming breakthrough stars of 2010, the time has certainly come for a female grime-star to balance things out. Flavour’s Noel Phillips, caught up with Mz Bratt while on the MOBO tour to chat about everything from working with Ed Sheeran, to her new single ‘Selecta’ and being a female on the grime scene.
I was recently reading your bio and noticed that you’ve described yourself as “fun, cheeky, and endorsing female empowerment” – but to anyone who has not yet heard of you, how would you describe yourself?
First things first I am a Scorpio, so I’m defiantly a fun person. However, if you get on the wrong side of me I can sting back, but in general I’m a very humble and thankful person.
One of the most interesting things that I admire about you is the fact that you don’t have a record deal in place, but somehow you still manage to release singles, and embark on tours across the UK.
It is mad, because I mean at the moment I don’t have a label behind me, but the feedback I’ve received while on the MOBO tour is amazing. But to think if I actually had a label behind me and had that kind of support then there could be great things, I guess.
As you mentioned you’re currently on the MOBO nationwide tour, alongside the likes of Skepta and Jodie Connor, what’s been your highlight so far?
It’s got to be the first show I did in Norwich which was wicked. I went out on stage singing Selecta and the crowd were just going wild, especially when we turned the music down all we were hearing back was the hook ‘Selecta see Selecta’.
Usually there’s a stereotype that says the grime genre is mainly for guys, so is it hard being a female on the grime scene?
It varies, sometimes it’s hard and sometimes it’s just cool. I think the main focus for me though is just to get on with my music, which is what I love doing wither I’m a boy or girl. At the end of the day I’m just doing music and if anyone doesn’t like it then that’s their problem.
Was that the feisty side of Mz Bratt that we just heard?
[Laughs]… It’s just that sometimes people may have too much of an opinion and its better to judge than to be judged.
You recently teamed up with upcoming singer Ed Sheeran, for a forthcoming project can you tell us a bit more about that?
Well, we recently worked on a track which I may use for my upcoming album, but either way it sounds sick. I also asked Wiley to feature on it and he thinks that it could be a good release.
So, will the collaboration be released as a single?
I don’t know yet, but I’ve had talks with my management and we’re still a bit unsure at the moment.
Okay, so you’ve already collaborated on many other tracks and remixes with the likes of Taio Cruz, Sadie Ama and Tinchy Stryder, but is there any other artists that you would like to work with?
I would love to work with Rita Ora. She’s a British singer singed to Roc Nation, and also Labrinth, who I recently had a studio session with and ended up spending the whole time dancing around, but hopefully we’ll do a song together sometime soon.
Let’s talk about your new single ‘Selecta’, tell us a bit about the inspiration behind it?
To be honest there was no inspiration, when I heard the Selecta beat it bought me back to a time when it was all about that old skool drum and base, rawness and fun vibe. So when we went to record it I didn’t actually write any lyrics, I just went along and freestyled from the top of my head, which is why I think it works so well.
I recently checked out the video to ‘Selecta’, and a few things that stood out for me was your selection of jazzed up leg wear along with a few odd earrings and a lot of female skankers, who came up with the concept for the video?
It was kind of like a group decision we wanted it to be fun and vibrant. A few weeks before shooting the video I was actually doing a school tour, and we went to a school where loads of kids got up and started dancing to Selecta. So, we asked them to come down on the day of the video, which they did, and it was a fun day.
You were recently invited to join a new collective group called ‘A-List’, created by Wiley – why do you think you were chosen out of so many other UK artists?
I’ve known Wiley since I was 15, and he’s watched me progress over the years, I think he has a lot of faith in me. He tells me I’ve got a lot of potential, and he also thinks he’s Lil Wayne so he wants me to be Nicki Minaj.
Wiley is of course known as the god father of grime, so does he at all play any sort of a father role to you?
[Laughs]… He’s more of a big brother. I can always go to him for advice on music or just life in general, and can always do the same.
Finally, what’s the plan from here? Will you be releasing an album anytime soon?
I am just working hard mastering my craft, and working on a mixtape. The album will probably come out next year. I’m also going to be on the Bigga Fish tour, and I’ve got a track with Fugetive and Wiley which we’ll possibly be releasing and doing a video for soon.
Mz Bratt – ‘Selecta’ is out now.
Interview by Noel Phillips