The truly humble Diya, aka D-Sew has been part of the UK Hip Hop scene for over a decade, taking influence from the Parisian and Mauritian rap scene, classical Indian composition, soul music and golden era 90’s boom bap. This multi-talented artist really does Do It Yourself Always; boasting an impressive range of talents, from rapping to singing, composition to production and has crafted a beautiful niche for herself, here are the 3 reasons not to sleep…
D-Sew – Fat Beats Live Cypher
Hailing from East London, D-Sew started her career whilst still at school, her writing was included in a publication of children’s poetry called “Wot Not Book of Poetry – Schools in Newham”. This continued her down a path of creativity, learning to play melodies on keyboards and writing rap lyrics to a back drop of 90’s Hip Hop radio, she cites Nas, Mobb Deep and Killah Priest as being particularly inspirational during this time, although Whitney Houston, Gill Scott Heron and Stevie Wonder also make the list. After cutting her teeth at Fat Beats NYC with her first live performance, she went on to develop artistically as a rapper and as a vocalist.
D-Sew – Song Cry
During this 2009 trip to New York she met with GeoSupreme and DJ Ready Cee who introduced her to legendary DJ Kool Herc, this visit inspired her ‘not to sleep on a talent’ and she went on to host the Hip Hop podcast ‘The D-Sew Show’ for 4 years following. During the same year there was another important collaboration for her which came in the form of The People’s Army. She appeared on “The People’s Army Mixtape Vol.1” and has previously worked alongside them on various youth projects and workshops. Her first solo EP release came in 2012 which was titled ‘D.I.Y.A. (Do It Yourself Always)’, a stand out track on the EP being Song Cry. From here she concentrated on vocalisation instead of rapping and released the Nutty P produced ‘Lotus Flower’ in 2015, competently demonstrating her singing ability, songwriting and range.
D-Sew plus others – Young Queens & Young Kings
“Creatifs La Nuit” is D-Sew’s latest, completely instrumental album. As the name suggests, she is more creative at night, a ‘zen’ within which she suspended herself to make this very personal collection of songs. Production, as well as rapping and singing is the third weapon in her arsenal and this release demonstrates the intricacy that goes into her work. The album was produced entirely on Ableton, features her original piano composition and includes drum pack samples from Beat Butcha and Alchemist, it was mixed by Mfumedia. The album includes a tribute to the victims of Grenfell, a song that Diya says was one of the most emotional pieces of work she has ever worked on.
Creatifs La Nuit was released on 22nd January 2018 and can be purchased from iTunes, streamed from Spotify or Amazon Music, so grab your copy of her brand new album now, check out the back catalogue and remember to Do It Yourself Always.
Words by Theo Specone