capturing the joy, pride and spilt wine of skepta’s mercury prize win

As we rewind to Thursday night, Laura 'Hyperfrank' Brosnan documents the intimate moments on film - shot by shot.

by Laura Brosnan
20 September 2016, 12:12am

Skepta, seconds before he is announced as 2016's Mercury Prize winner, as his mother and sister Julie look on proudly.

Skepta is officially the king of grime; he's created a skanking frenzy internationally, released his winning album independently off his own Boy Better Know label and headlined the main stage at Wireless. His choice of song to perform on the night was Shutdown - which guided the music industry guests through his back catalogue of reloads. It was 13 years ago that Dizzee Rascal took his gritty dark garage to the stage and walked away with the same prize - something in the air that night felt as if a dramatic change was about to happen. While much of the tables were enjoying the music there was a contagious energy being generated from the BBK table.

Joseph Adenuga's name was announced in the short list and the table cheered like he had already won; in a way he already had. He took to the stage and chanted "they want to know how I did it without no label, no A-list songs and I told them… I just shut down!" His label team, Sister Julie, Father Joseph and Mother Ify, all stood in celebration of how far the Tottenham MC had come.

As the gears moved into position to declare the official winner, Pulp's Jarvis Cocker dropped the words "SKEPTA" and a circle of celebration erupted around the dining table. The winning MC, completely astounded, held his head in his hands and knelt over. Every team member, embraced one another with one hand, and picked up a bottle of whatever they could - Champagne, water and wine - to shower the grime star with a sea of love and support. Mrs Adenuga's selective choice was red wine, and while family hugged him, she joined in with the youthful traditional with a loud cheer for her eldest son.

He took to the stage with his album T-shirt drenched, accompanied by his entourage that included Shorty and DJ Maximum, and grinned with disbelief that he had finally done it; accepted by the mainstream, appreciated by the grime scene and made his family proud, all on his own terms. 

Mrs. Adeuga showers everyone - including Kano's mum - in red wine as she celebrates her son's success.

Overwhelmed and soaked in the chaos, Skepta takes a moment to take in the news.

Skepta strides with his 'angels of greatness' to collect his prize.

Claps, gun fingers, hugs and praise as Joseph Joseph Adenuga accepts with a cheeky grin.

The full squad SHUTDOWN Hammersmith...


Text and photography Laura 'Hyperfrank' Brosnan

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