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POTTER PAYPER

The story of Potter Payper is one of highs, many lows, pain and redemption. Raised by his grandmother struggling to make ends meet on Barking’s infamous Gascoigne Estate — widely considered to be one of the most deprived estates in the UK — the artist born Jamel Bousbaa, of Irish and Algerian descent, was seen as a write-off by the education system, and by his early teens was getting his education from the roads. By his late teens, he’d been in and out of young offender institutes countless times and had already lived through several lifetime’s worth of trauma. It was at this point, frustrated with attempts by youth services to engage with him, that Potter discovered his love for rhyming and telling his story.


Words like ‘underrated’ are often thrown around in UK rap, but Potter feels like that’s doubly true for him. He may get the widespread credit he deserves now (he salutes Stormzy for mentioning him while on-stage at Glastonbury in 2019), but it’s been a long time coming.