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Chip, Chipmunk Is Chip the Grime scene saviour? How the MC's career took a 360

First of all, let's get this straight. It wasn't Chip's return to Grime that sparked fury among the scene but the words he chose when he landed. No one can doubt Chip's ability, the North London MC proved to be a problem when he broke into the scene in 2006 and hit unbelievable heights at the time for a UK born artist. However, the question is to why he chose to head back to the Grime scene and is he the reason for Grime's resurgence? Let's take a look how Chip came, went and came back again.

Gift and a Curse

Big Narstie hit the nail on the head in his interview with Charlie Sloth regarding on why Chip came back to the scene: "Cause it was dead". When "Who Are You" hit Channel U back in the day, heads were turned. If you were 11 to 16 and lived in North London at the time, everybody claimed to know Chip in some way and had "League Of My Own" on their Sony Walkmans. His infamous appearance with Wiley and Ice Kid on Tim Westwood's show on Radio 1 will live long in the memory but it went sour not long after. Wiley accused Chip of choosing the money over Grime. Being talented at a young age can become a gift and a curse, Chip went from "Who Are You" to "Chip Diddy Chip" in no time and headed to America in the blink of an eye. 

His movements were justified. To be fair, many MC's were dreaming of Pop success as Grime really didn't have a future of fortune. You could say Tinchy Stryder set the bar for MC's wanting to go into a mainstream direction after partnering with Taio Cruz for "Take Me Back", a completely different sound from anything on his debut album "Star In The Hood". But who can blame them when their role models went from "i Luv U" to "Flex" or "50/50" to "Wearing My Rolex"? Either way, he chose his path regardless of age and tried to seize his opportunities. 


Cocky, and arrogant, might really have been two reasonable words to describe Chip once he recorded "Champion" featuring Chris Brown. His confidence flourished but he still seemed somewhat down to Earth. He still linked Skepta and Boy Better Know in Miami for the video shoot, he still gave advice to a 14 year old Young Adz, he still wanted to show how he cared for his music adolescence but it did look like he put Grime behind him. Why wouldn't he come across that way? He was based in America, where Grime is largely misunderstood, listing all the states he was working in, in almost every interview. When news broke that he signed to T.I.'s Grand Hustle, you must've thought he was never coming back. 

However, leading up to his 2012 mixtape "London Boy", he sat with Jamal Edwards for an insightful interview of his career leading up to that point. Chip admitted he might've been a little blinded by the lights and questioned why he was so "gassed" before. A maturer Chip looked humbled, maybe he knew his ride with Grand Hustle was already coming to an end. Maybe he was already plotting his return to the UK.


So let's fast forward to today. Chip connected with Charlie Sloth for his Fire In The Booth that had him talking more than rapping but the end message was clear. He's back and ready to represent the unfortunate youth in the poverty stricken areas of London! Hold up. Why weren't we hearing this when he was in America? That's the cause of Big Narstie's rant that everyone else seemed to piggy back from. Come on Chip, you should've known better.  

Narstie's words were so real even Chip has to agree but there does seem to be a fake outrage from fans and artists that want to go in on him "just because". Narstie's resistance to forcing a radio single has benefitted him in the long run. He now has solo tours under his belt and he's giving upcoming artist the blueprint to independent success alongside Dice Recordings. 

Although, in Chip's defence, there's nothing wrong with being inspired to make good music. What if he simply didn't like what he was doing before and decided to come back? Or maybe he realised how much the UK's scene has evolved since he was in the limelight? Who knows? One thing is for sure though, Chip has sparked a new fascination with Grime and made things a lot more interesting. If we don't get the best out of Chip at least we have Bugzy Malone to thank him for.

Believe & Achieve Episode 1 is a damn good return too by the way, if you haven't heard already, you can listen below

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