Students record knife crime rap at historic Northants music studio
Teenagers from a special educational needs school in Kettering have recorded a rap dedicated to exposing the issues of knife crime.
The talented trio, Logan (aged 15), Paddy (15) and Ebony (14), who are students from Isebrook SEN College, were invited along to Beck Recording Studio in Wellingborough recently to record their rap.
In recording at Beck, the students are following in the footsteps of famous names including Queen icon Freddie Mercury and the Northampton rock band Bauhaus, who are among the acts to have recorded there.
The track, which the students penned as their entry into last year’s Northamptonshire County Schools Challenge, is aimed at encouraging other young people to realise the dangers carrying knives can pose.
Music teacher Cath Grice said: “Taking part in the County Challenge has been an amazing journey for the students. They have produced an excellent rap and are loving every minute of the opportunities it is creating for them.
“The students are really excited to have the rap professionally recorded and want to get their ‘Save the Grief’ anti-knife crime message out to as many people as possible. We are very proud of our students”.
The Northamptonshire County Schools Challenge is an inter-schools competition which has a different theme each year and which encourages teams of students to come up with ‘social enterprise’ ideas to help raise awareness of an issue.
The 2019 challenge was based around the subject of knife crime and, although the Isebrook team did not rank in the top three winners for this competition, the panel of judges were so impressed with their idea, the young people were encouraged to take it forward.
Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service’s Chief Fire Officer Darren Dovey, who was one of the judges, said: “Knife crime is in the news now all across the country and it is so important for young people everywhere, who could be victims or perpetrators of knife crime, to get involved in this subject themselves. This rap is an example of one tool which can be used to get the younger generation really thinking about the potential impact carrying knives can have on people’s lives.”
The Crimestoppers charity regional board in Northamptonshire offered to fund studio time for the rap to be recorded but, on hearing about the idea, David Smith – owner of Beck Studio – stepped in and offered recording time free of charge.
It is hoped the rap, called ‘Save the grief’, will be used whenever possible to raise awareness of knife crime and discussions are already taking place about how it could be used to support Northamptonshire Police’s anti-knife crime work in the community.
Shaun Johnson, chairman of the local Crimestoppers board, said: “When we heard this rap at the County Schools Challenge, it really blew us away, it was sung with such confidence and power. We came to Beck Studios and told Dave Smith about the project and were so grateful when he said ‘Shaun, we can do this for free’. Now meetings will take place to see how we can use this rap in the future to raise awareness of knife crime, including potentially trying to tie it in with the knife angel exhibit which comes to the county later this year.”
Chief Inspector Adam Ward, Northamptonshire Police’s Force lead on knife crime, said: “I believe this is a really good way of getting the message out there to other young people. The attitudes to carrying knives in schools have changed perceptibly. There are people who think they need to for their own protection, so it is our job to challenge these beliefs and behaviours.
“We are supportive of any way in which we can push out the message that this is never going to be acceptable or appropriate.”