Stormzy has just become the first UK rap artist to feature on the cover on TIME Magazine in a huge moment for the Croydon-raised artist and UK music.
Time magazine has named Stormzy one of its “next generation leaders” in the US news weekly’s annual list of young trailblazers. The 26-year-old rapper appears on the cover of the magazine and was interviewed by the Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race author, Reni Eddo-Lodge.
The rapper sits alongside Swedish environmental activist Greta Thunberg, American actor Tessa Thompson and Spanish musician Rosalía on the list. Senegalese artist Selly Raby Kane, British-Somalian boxer Ramla Ali and South Korean gaming activist Kim “Geguri” Se-yeon also appear.
Born Michael Ebenazer Kwadjo Omari Owuo Jr, Stormzy posted a picture of the cover on Instagram, writing: “I’ve stared at this cover for a few minutes and it feels like one of those, ‘How the fuckkkkk did man get here?!’ moments.”
He continued: “Anyone who knows me knows how much I shy away from being anything other than ‘Mike’. The thought of being a ‘role model’ or ‘leader’ or whatever it is can often feel way way way too heavy and too overwhelming and a lot of the time … I can’t even bare [sic] the weight of being myself let alone any of these other titles.
“I am deeply flawed and still learning how to be a man and still figuring out how to grow into the person I need to be but within all of that confusion and all the juggling of being a human and trying to be a superhuman – I have purpose. And my purpose has lead [sic] me here.