This October, veteran British battle rapper Tony D has collaborated with bespoke London sound house The Futz Butler to conceive a powerful and unabashed examination of British blackness through sound design, film and spoken word.
Premiering as part of Black History Month UK, Tony unapologetically frames the unique, nuanced reality of what it means to be black in a post-Brexit Britain through the context of
often marginalised, historical black narratives.
His eloquent prose and measured delivery weave personal insight and uncomfortable facts set against a backdrop of strangled sound design and striking imagery, courtesy of director Yaz Merrin.
Speaking With Black History Month Yaz Merrin Director; says ” My greatest hope for this project is that it is a source of comfort for the right people and one of discomfort for the wrong ones. When black lives fell under the spotlight in 2020, I discovered that many white people felt tentative about being openly anti-racist for fear of ‘getting it wrong’, festishizing black bodies, or protesting ‘too much’. Although I believe honesty, whichever side of the coin, is a more comfortable place than passivity, I had been made privy to a shamed part of the white experience, and concluded that distilling these miscalculations was a key to promoting real change.”
This equanimity in approach, combined with Tony’s lexical prowess and lived experience delivers an arrestingly authentic, unfiltered piece, performed as though the whole country – not just the black British community, is listening.
This ambition to continue difficult conversations re-ignited by events last year, is a thread that runs throughout Black & British. Whilst recognising the charged nature of the issues tackled in the film, the team behind the project remain unwaveringly motivated. They hope the broad-appeal demeanour of Black & British can serve as a catalyst to help dismantle entrenched systems that perpetuate prejudice for so many throughout the UK.
“I want to change the narrative. To tell a story of struggle and survival through the eyes of experience. And for people to recognise that as far down the road as we have travelled, there is still a way to go. “Tony D