Dylan Kwabena Mills (born 18 September 1984), better known by his stage name Dizzee Rascal, is an English hip hop recording artist and record producer. His music spans grime, UK garage, bassline, British hip hop, and R&B. Best known for his number-one hits “Dance wiv Me”, “Bonkers”, “Holiday”, “Dirtee Disco”, and “Shout”, “Hype” with Calvin Harris, his debut album Boy in da Corner is considered a grime classic and earned him the 2003 Mercury Prize.
Follow-up albums Showtime, Maths + English, and Tongue n’ Cheek have been critically acclaimed and certified gold, with Tongue n’ Cheek going platinum for sales exceeding 300,000 units in the United Kingdom. Around the age of 14, Dizzee Rascal became an amateur drum and bass DJ, also MCing (rapping) over tracks as customary in sound system culture, and making occasional appearances on local pirate radio stations. Aged 16, he self-produced his first single, “I Luv U”. In 2002, he jointly formed the Roll Deep Crew, a 13-piece garage collective, with former school friends. He also signed a solo deal with the record label XL.
During his early career, Dizzee worked with his mentor Wiley to create the still-unreleased song “We Ain’t Having It” and rapped on some Sidewinder recordings. He made some instrumentals including “Go” and “Ho” and “Streetfighter”, which used some music from a video game. Dizzee had an ongoing feud, from late 2002, with fellow popular underground grime MC Crazy Titch, which began when a fight broke out between the pair during a set on the popular pirate radio station Deja Ju FM.
The set which features many seminal early grime artists was filmed, which was rare for the era, and has accumulated over a million views on YouTube and resulted in the two exchanging diss tracks. After winning a Sidewinder Award for Best Newcomer MC in 2002, Dizzee was a judge in the Sky1 show Must Be The Music. He also did a verse on the Roll Deep remix of Lets Push Things Forward on the 2002 Weak Become Heroes CD and 12″ single by The Streets.
Dizzee Rascal released his debut studio album, Boy in da Corner, on 21 July 2003, in the United Kingdom, where it peaked at number twenty-three; having been certified as gold by the British Phonographic Industry (BPI). The album was preceded by the rapper’s debut single, “I Luv U”, which peaked at number twenty-nine on the UK Singles Chart. The singles “Fix Up, Look Sharp” and “Jus’ a Rascal” were also released from the album in 2003, reaching peaks of number seventeen and thirty, respectively, in the UK. The rapper’s second studio album, Showtime was released on 6 September 2004, where it debuted at number eight in the UK and number sixty-five in Ireland. The album’s lead single, “Stand Up Tall” was released on 23 August 2004, marking Dizzee Rascal’s first top-ten single when it peaked at number ten.
The album also saw the release of “Dream” and the double A-side “Off 2 Work”/”Graftin'”, which reached peaks of number fourteen and number forty-four in the UK, respectively. A third studio album, Maths + English, was released on 4 June 2007, where it debuted at number seven in the UK and number fifty-seven in Ireland. The album saw the release of three singles, “Sirens”, “Pussyole (Old Skool)” and “Flex”, which reached peaks of number twenty, twenty-two and twenty-three, respectively, in the UK. On 22 June 2008, Dizzee Rascal released “Dance wiv Me”, a collaboration with singer Chrome and songwriter/producer Calvin Harris. The track saw commercial success for the rapper when it debuted at number-one in the UK, also reaching number five in Ireland and number thirteen in Australia.
At the 2010 BRIT Awards, Dizzee collaborated with British indie rock band Florence and the Machine, performing “You Got the Dirtee Love”, a mash-up of “You’ve Got the Love” and “Dirtee Cash”. The collaboration was then released as a digital download, peaking at number two in the United Kingdom and number twenty-four in Ireland. The album, Tongue N’ Cheek, was re-issued in June 2010 to include the collaboration and celebrate the platinum certification of the album itself. The ‘Dirtee Deluxe’ edition of the album included the single “Dirtee Disco”, which gave the rapper a fourth solo number-one single when it topped the chart in May 2010.
The rapper returned to the charts in 2012 following the release of “Scream”, which featured Must Be the Music finalist Pepper (of Pepper & Piano). It became the artist’s nineteenth top forty hit in the United Kingdom when it debuted at number twenty-two in August 2012.
“The Fifth” (2013), “Tongue n’ Cheek” (2009), “Maths + English” (2007), “Showtime” (2004), “Boy in da Corner” (2003).
“Sidewinder Live” (Recorded live on Rinse FM with DJ Slimzee Released: 2002).
Dirtee TV.com – The Mixtape EP, Vol. 2 (2013), Dirtee TV.com mixed by DJ MK (2012).
As lead artist
“Hype” (with Calvin Harris) (2016 Album TBA), “Still Sittin’ Here” (with Fekky) (2014 Non-album single), “Love This Town” (featuring Teddy Sky) (2013 Album The Fifth), “Goin’ Crazy” (featuring Robbie Williams) (2013 Album The Fifth), “Scream” (featuring Pepper) (2012 Non-album single), “Dirtee Disco” (2010 Album Tongue n’ Cheek), “You Got the Dirtee Love” (with Florence and the Machine) (2010 Album Tongue n’ Cheek), “Dirtee Cash” (2009 Album Tongue n’ Cheek), “Holiday” (featuring Chrome) (2009 Album Tongue n’ Cheek).
“Bonkers” (featuring Armand Van Helden) (2009 Album Tongue n’ Cheek), “Dance wiv Me” (featuring Calvin Harris and Chrome) (2008 Album Tongue n’ Cheek), “Flex” (2007 Album Maths + English), “Pussyole (Old Skool)” (2007 Album Maths + English), “Sirens” (2007 Album Maths + English), “Off 2 Work”/”Graftin'” (2004 Album Showtime), “Dream” (2004 Album Showtime), “Stand Up Tall” (2004 Album Showtime), “Jus’ a Rascal” (2003 Album Boy in da Corner), “Fix Up, Look Sharp” (2003 Album Boy in da Corner), “I Luv U” (2003 Album Boy in da Corner).
As featured artist
“How Love Begins” (DJ Fresh and High Contrast featuring Dizzee Rascal) (2016 Album TBA), “When It Comes to You” (Adam F and Cory Enemy featuring Dizzee Rascal and Margot) (2014 Non-album single), “Wild” (Jessie J featuring Big Sean and Dizzee Rascal) (2013 Album Alive), “The Power” (DJ Fresh featuring Dizzee Rascal) (2012 Album Nextlevelism), “Bluku! Bluku!” (D Double E featuring Dizzee Rascal) (2011 Non-album single), “Violence” (Newham Generals featuring G-Man and Dizzee Rascal) (2010 Album Generally Speaking), “Loca” (Shakira featuring Dizzee Rascal) (2010 Album Sale el Sol), “Toe Jam” (The Brighton Port Authority featuring David Byrne and Dizzee Rascal) (2008 Album I Think We’re Gonna Need a Bigger Boat), “Lucky Star” (Basement Jaxx featuring Dizzee Rascal) (2003 Album Kish Kash).
“Shout” (as Shout for England with James Corden) (2010 Non-album singles), “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” (as part of Band Aid 20) (2004 Non-album
“I Don’t Need a Reason” (2013 Album The Fifth), “H Town” (featuring Bun B and Trae tha Truth) (2013 Album The Fifth).
Other charted songs
“Bassline Junkie” (2013 Peak chart positions 10 (UK) and 75 (IRE) Dirtee TV.com – The Mixtape EP, Vol.2), “Temptation Greets You Like Your Naughty Friend” (Arctic Monkeys featuring Dizzee Rascal) (2007 Peak chart positions 77 (UK) Album Brianstorm).
“Love Ain’t Just a Word” (Rudimental featuring Anne-Marie and Dizzee Rascal) (2015 Album We the Generation), “Here 2 China” (Calvin Harris featuring Dillon Francis & Dizzee Rascal) (2012 Album 18 Months), “Still the Same” (Lethal Bizzle featuring Dizzee Rascal) (2011 Album Best of Bizzle), “Heavy” (Chase & Status featuring Dizzee Rascal) (2011 Album No More Idols), “Everyone” (Cheryl Cole featuring Dizzee Rascal) (2010 Album Messy Little Raindrops), “Klappin” (Smurfie Syco featuring Dizzee Rascal) (2009 smurfiesyco.com (album)), “Two Types of Bitches” (UGK featuring Dizzee Rascal + Pimpin’ Ken) (2007 Album Underground Kingz).