Jahmek Power aka Jammer is one of the true pioneers of the grime scene. A builder of bridges and peacemaker rather than a loose cannon, Jammer is one of the few people in London who can count both Dizzee Rascal and Wiley amongst his friends and who has worked with Kano, Tinchy, Chipmunk and just about everyone else, underground and overground. And if none of them have a bad word to say about him, that’s because, at heart, Jammer believes more in music than he does in ego.
Jammer always knew he’d do something in music. His dad was a musician and he grew up fiddling with the buttons on the family stereo. As a teenager he started out DJing drum & bass and ragga with a mate, DJ Supa D (now one of UK funky’s biggest names) after the pair of them found some cheap decks down Hackney Wick market. After leaving school he went to work at the distributors Essential Direct just as So Solid and Ms Dynamite started to come through from the underground. Jammer saved up his wages to buy a basic production set-up which he installed in the cellar of his family’s house in Leytonstone. The space was to become known as The Dungeon and to many people is one of the key locations in any geographical history of grime.
With friends D Double E and Hyper Jammer formed 187 Crew, the three of them eventually migrating to join Nasty Crew around 2000. Nasty were to become one of thedefining crews within the early growth of the musical style which would eventually be named Grime. Their famous Monday night show on pirate station Déjà Vu started at this time and they were amongst the first to be playing releases from the likes of Roll Deep and Dizzee. And as well as the radio show, Jammer was producing, for instance putting together the beat for “Take You Out” – the first Nasty Crew track to feature Kano. Jammer followed this up by releasing Kano’s “Boyz Luv Girlz” on his own Jahmektheworld imprint. Alongside this sat his own “Dubz” releases on the massively influential Locked On imprint, his renowned remix of “Are You Really From The Ends?” and the “Why?” white label, released by Wiley.
Jammer’s connection to Locked On would lead to Kano and D Double E meeting Mike Skinner and eventually signing to 679, an event which played its part in the dissolution of Nasty Crew. Suddenly finding himself with less rappers in the studio Jammer began to play around with MCing himself. The result was “Murkle Man” – one of the funniest (and biggest) grime tunes (and videos) ever made, and one which emphasised that the music could incorporate humour and self-deprecation as well as macho posturing. In between touring the country in a purple and green superhero costume, Jammer found time to release the excellent “Are You Dumb?” mixtape series (check the cover to volume 3, showing Jam tying his shoelace in front of oncoming traffic on the M11) and mastermind, film and record the “Lord of the Mics” DVDs, all from that same basement in the family home and including such classics as the clash between Kano and Wiley.
Since then, in between the mixtapes and DVDs, Jammer has toured the world with Dizzee Rascal and the Dirtee Stank crew (as well as recording with him on the “Murkle Man” remix and “Lemon”), become a member of the most influential contemporary grime collective, Boy Better Know, featured on the BBK remix of Jay Sean’s “Stay” (over 1 million views on YouTube) and on and on. All this and the man is still only 27 and about to release his debut album!
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