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  • Sara Chitseko

Criminalised for making music

Drill artists, Skengdo and AM have been sentenced to 9 months in prison, suspended for 2 years, for breaching a gang injunction issued in August last year. The breach comes as a result of the artists performing their song 'Attempted 1.0' and is the first time in British legal history that a prison sentence has been issued for performing a song. Their convictions raise questions over censorship and the suppression of Black music in particular.

In response, an open letter has condemned this suppression for, "silencing one of the few avenues, through threat of criminalisation, by which young people can discuss the reality of their lives with any hope of being heard" (Guardian, 2019). It has been signed by 65 signatories including The 4Front Project Director, Temi Mwale. You can read the full letter here.


The Guardian. (2019). Stop criminalising our musicians | Letter. [online] Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/law/2019/feb/03/stop-criminalising-our-musicians [Accessed 28 Feb. 2019].