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North-east rapper and Black Lives Matter campaigner nominated for two music awards

Cooking up a storm with his diverse sound, Aberdeen rapper Chef has been nominated for two Scottish Alternative Music Awards (SAMA).

Ola Akisanya, known by his stage name Chef, said he was “very excited” to be nominated for SAMA which recognise the best new Scottish music and aim to shine a spotlight on a range of contemporary music genres.

Chef was shortlisted in the Best Hip Hop and Best Newcomer categories.

He said: “It’s great to be recognised for working hard. It kind of gives the validation that the right steps are being made.

“My music style is hard to describe because it’s very diverse. My sound travels through the genres of R’n’B, hip-hop and trap. There’s always storytelling and catchy tunes. My music includes so many different sounds.”

The single the rapper is most proud of is called On My Own.

“My favourite single changes all the time, but at the moment it’s On My Own, it’s very very happy and it’s got a nice flow to it,” said Ola, who in addition to being a musician, studies economics at Aberdeen University where he is the president of the African Caribbean Society. He is known for leading the Black Lives Matter protests in Aberdeen.

Vote for Chef at SAMA awards

Voting for SAMA has opened earlier today and closes on Wednesday November 10. If you wish to support Chef, click here to cast your vote.

The rapper is looking forward to attending the awards ceremony on November 27 in Glasgow.

“I’ll be in attendance,” he said.

“There have been so many people I connected with online during lockdown but never met in person, so it’ll be good to get together as creatives.”

chef
Aberdeen rapper Chef has been nominated for two Scottish Alternative Music Awards.

The rapper previously teamed up with Aberdeen producer Louis Seivwright to release a BBC documentary showcasing the very best musical talent from across the north-east.

The nine-minute short titled “The New Aberdeen: RnB and Hip-Hop at the Heart of the Granite City” provides an insight into the stories of the rising Aberdeen artists. Click here to find out more.

Leading Black Lives Matter movement in Aberdeen

Ola said his music is also an opportunity to highlight matters he cares about, which includes his involvement in the Black Lives Matter movement.

He said: “When it comes to my music, the stuff I talk about is very much separate (from the societal issues) but every time I do something with music and opportunities I get I make sure I shine a light on the issues that I care about.

Ola Akisanya is also known by his stage name Chef.

“That’s where a lot of my work goes into. When I get these opportunities I highlight the work and the black and minority communities and the struggles that they go through.

“My term has just ended as the president of the African Caribbean Society. I’m in my last year of uni so I want to focus on that. I was the president for the past three years.”

Click here for more information on the awards.

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