Little Simz has praised the community of black female artists within the music industry for supporting each other as they rise to fame.
The British rapper, 28, posed for a stunning photoshoot for the latest cover story of NET-A-PORTER’s digital title PORTER, with the star speaking out on her career and her experience of working in the arts.
Musician Little Simz – who has starred in Netflix hit Top Boy, has performed a headline Glastonbury gig, currently has two two Mercury-Prize nominations and has had multiple BRIT Award wins – says there is an unspoken rule of black female artists looking out for each other.
She explained: ‘There’s a real community of us coming through that is really exciting to watch. I feel like there’s an unsaid thing between us all; that we’re always going to support each other. What I’m trying to project is that your win is always going to be my win, and vice versa.’
She said she wants to see five black females up for Best New Artists at next year’s BRIT Awards and a further five shortlisted for Mercury Prize.
While she is hoping for for further recognition for her fellow black artists, she recognises there has been change for diverse voices within the once almost entirely male-led music industry.
She said: ‘It’s definitely getting better. I’m seeing a lot more black women coming through within music and film.
‘We are getting pushed to the forefront and we are getting airtime. People want to tell our stories, show our faces, dress us and take us to events.
‘It’s wicked but, in the same breath, I hope that we are also not blinded by that. I hope that we enjoy it but also really understand the power and the influence that we have.
‘[That we] are smart with that and understand that our worth and value is triple what we get offered on the first go. I feel if we understand that, then [we can] bask in it.’
Little Simz has been shortlisted for the Mercury Prize this year, with the ceremony being postponed following the death of Queen Elizabeth II.
Her 2021 album Sometimes I Might Be Introvert has been nominated alongside the likes of Sam Fender’s second studio album Seventeen Going Under and Harry Styles’ Harry’s House.
She said of her nomination: ‘I am feeling grateful; very, very blessed, this is my second time round now.
‘When you’re an artist, a creative making art, you just do it because it’s a release. I had some things to say and this was my way of expressing it and it’s a blessing people have resonated with it.
‘The list is so strong so to be amongst that is definitely an honour. I definitely will carry this energy throughout me today.’
To see the full feature with Little Simz read PORTER or download the NET-A-PORTER app for iPhone, iPad and Android.