FFSYTHO will make her live debut at the Reading and Leeds Festivals this month after being picked to perform on the BBC Introducing stage at each event.
The Northampton grime MC and rapper has been winning plaudits across the industry and receiving airplay from the likes of BBC Radio 1 and 1 Xtra following a run of singles and freestyles in recent years.
Each year, a panel of music experts from the BBC choose acts to play at major festivals such as Reading and Leeds on its ‘Introducing’ stages, which seek to champion emerging talent.
FFSYTHO said: “I’m absolutely buzzing, I can’t believe they’ve chosen me out of so many people.
“I’ve had a lot of support from people here and BBC Music Introducing in Northampton.
“They made my single Mad (remix) Track of The Week, it was playlisted and it's just gone from there.”
An original version of the track picked up airplay when it was initially released last year, but FFSYTHO decided to release an updated remix.
She said: “I wanted to remix it into a more hype tune as the original was a bit of a slower grime tune.
“The remix hit it off and they loved it and they put me forward and here I am.
“I’m nervous, but I’m confident. All I’ve got to do is rehearse, rehearse, practice, practice and I’ll be ready.”
FFSYTHO is already a familiar face across her hometown, thanks to a giant mural of her outside of the Grosvenor Shopping Centre.
However, it was a freestyle rap which went viral on Twitter which she explains initially flung her into the spotlight.
“I've always been about my music, but I never really broadcasted it,” she explains.
“I joined Twitter about six years ago and then about three years ago, I did a freestyle which went viral.
“Two days later, I was in Redbull Studios and two days after that I was on BBC Radio 1 and 1 Xtra with a song with (influential grime figure) Terror Danjah called For ****sake Why Though?
“It’s just gone from there and I’ve continued releasing songs since.
“Social media really put a rocket into what I'm doing.”
That ‘rocket’ saw FFSYTHO go on to take the top spot in an audition with Pirate Studios – seeing off 6,000 other entrants - collaborate with King Apparel and take part in BBC Radio 1’s Big Weekend which this year took place online.
Amid this, she has released other tracks including Bop Through Ya Manor, You Next, Target n Aim and Ask About Me.
Talking about the singles and lyrics, FFSYTHO said: “I think one of the reasons I went viral initially was because I didn't hold back with the explicitness. I swore lots and said some naughty things.
“I think the grime industry used to be a lot more ragged than it is now, everyone is a bit more cautious.
“I just went in all guns blazing and people loved it. My lyrics talk about the things which I’ve been through growing up. It’s all just storytelling really.”
The Northampton native grew up on a housing estate in the south of the town, but explains it was a move to Weston Favell Upper School which helped change her life.
She said: “I'm gay. Where I grew up in Northampton it felt really homophobic at the time. People were very different then to what they are now.
“The move changed everything and made me who I am today.”
FFSYTHO spent four years living in north London before returning to Northampton.
Adding, “I’m forever grateful for the people that I've met, especially when I came back from London.
“London made me more confident and opened my eyes to even more cultures.
“I ended up coming back, came out to all my friends who were really supportive, then my music took off.”
Influenced by the likes of Miss Dynamite, Stush, Shystie and Missy Elliott, FFSYTHO regularly attended the seminal Sidewinder club nights in Northampton which hosted some of the biggest names in UK garage and grime while also listening to the reggae, Motown and 70s music played by her mum at home.
While the coronavirus pandemic and national lockdowns meant much of the music industry ground to a halt, FFSYTHO has been busy readying new material hoping to pick up where she left off.
“The tunes are ready to go,” she explains, “There will be a second EP coming with Purple City, a label based in Exeter.
“I think there will be more singles, then the EP towards the end of the year or the start of next year.
“The industry is so fast moving now, but I’ve been lucky. My tracks like Bop Through Ya Manor which I released in 2018 is still getting regular radio plays.
“It’s also not just grime that I'm doing, I'm doing some hip-hop and RnB with some singing on as well.”
FFSYTHO is also due to take part in Northampton Pride in September.
Turning to those who have helped her get to where she is today, FFSYTHO said: “I want to shout out to my mum – she says this is what I was born to do – and everyone in my hometown for the support. I’m really, really grateful.
“It’s not been easy, but I focus on what I'm doing and it’s paying off.
“I’m still a small fish in a very big pond but I’m happy doing what I'm doing and I'm loving the reception I’m getting.”
For more information, visit https://twitter.com/FFSYTHO