IAMDDB, one of the UK’s hottest up and coming female artists, showed us and her army of die hard supporters why she is far from your average urban act. The Hoxton Basement came alive to the sound of Hoodrich, a pop-up event designed by IAMDDB to give back to her fans. Describing the event as ‘a night of vibes with style’, IAMDDB made sure the guest artists and brands she brought to accompany her for the evening – Slum Flower; Abnormal Sleepz; Mata Labs; The K Label; Gramm; Dank of England and of course her own Hoodrich merchandise – incorporated all of the characteristics that make her such a unique and inspiring individual.
By 5:30pm, her most determined fans, which believe me is saying a lot when it comes to IAMDDB’s followers, were already queuing up to get a chance to meet their idol. Never one to disappoint IAMDDB welcomed her first twenty-five guests through the door with a hand picked goody bag as Abnormal Sleepz set to work on the decks, firing out the latest bangers. Myself and the rest of The Hoxton Basement were then treated to a very special surprise. A real taste of IAMDDB in the shape of her and her mum’s home made cooking! Which was quite literally food for the soul and elevated the evening into an all round sensory experience.
The brands included in the pop up all had their close connections to IAMDBB. Mata Labs make up, founded by IAMDDB’s very own make up artist Marielle, displayed their innovative range of bold coloured lipgloss’, as the Mata Labs team were on hand (quite literally) to give fans the chance to get their nails done in the same fashion as their champion.
Dank of England arrived with a large array of merchandise from t-shirts and bomber jackets to dank boxes and hemp soaps. The opposite corner, saw Gramm, an up and coming street wear brand born in IAMDDB’s hometown of Manchester, display a hand picked collection of their highly desirable clothing range.
Filling the last space was The K Label. An exclusive, premium womenswear brand, priding itself on breaking down boundaries and empowering women. The recent BRIT awards saw IAMDDB don one of their un-released pieces, for what had to be one of the more eye-catching outfits of the evening.
One of the highlights of the event for me was The Slum Flower’s poignant discussion on mental health within the community and what it means to be a woman in 2018. She spoke of the importance of empowering young women to dominate the spaces they inhabit and touched on topics including sexism, racism, body image and creating problems by simply being ones self.
The evening was wrapped up (no pun intended) by no other than the lady herself. And despite what had been a thoroughly enjoyable, entertaining and educational evening, it was clear whom the people had come to see! And my gosh were we not disappointed! With that trademark swagger and the vocals and lyrics that distinguish her in a market saturated by wishy washy trap and unremarkable artists, IAMDDB came on and delivered a performance that highlighted why she is on a path heading straight for the top.
The night ended in the same way it began, with IAMDDB giving back to her fans, handing out free merchandise to a thoroughly contented crowd. Now I’d like to end this with my own personal take on the woman that is IAMDBB. From the arrangement of the tables to putting up the lights, to making sure each and every fan had their chance to say a word or two, give her a hug or take a selfie. I saw a woman in touch with who she is, what her fans mean to her and to her music, and who is showing that despite the pitfalls that seem to snare so many of her contemporary’s, you can still be an artist and keep it 100% real!!!!
Photos by Amy Borley