Derby Hip Hop History: What Was Out There?

Although Derby has had a hip hop scene for many yeImage of wall covered in graffiti in Derby.ars, the history of the scene has been ‘hidden’ – memories held in peoples heads, flyers and photos kept in peoples attics. As part of the project we completed a heritage audit to see what existing information was available. We looked online, talked to people, and contacted heritage organisations in Derby City including Derby Museums and Derby Local Studies Library to see if they had any info relating to Derby hip hop


We searched online for Derby hip hop, and used resources including ‘Picture the Past’ a website with hundreds of images of the East Midlands. After searching for hip hoYoung people at Derby Local Studies Libraryp in Derby with no results, we widened the search to Derbyshire and then Nottinghamshire just in case. There were no images relating to hip hop.

local studies group 3We did a group visit to Derby Local Studies Library which holds records on Derby going back hundreds of years. Young people worked with library staff to search their archive including index cards and catalogue cards (images left and right). They did not find any records of Derby hip hop.

We spoke to people from Derby hip hop past and present. We knew they had memories of Derby hip hop but very little was written down anywhere or recorded. We interviewed some of these people for this project including Baby J, BFG, Skinny Man, Kyalo, JD, and Eyez (image left). Read the interview summaries.

We knew Deda Dance had held many hip hop events over the years and one member of HHC7staff had hundreds of photos (image right). Digital copies of these photographs are now available on this website. View these photographs.

We were also in touch with someone who had a collectionImage of wall covered in graffiti in Derby. of photos of graffiti in Derby parks going back about 15 years (image right). Digital copies of these photographs are now  on this website. View these photographs.