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A well known figure in the world of black British music, Leytonstone-born Murkage Dave has found himself at a unique crossroads between musical styles and practices. As a vocalist and songwriter, Dave has crafted a versatile sound, rooted in a youth spent listening to garage and R&B, but also revealing formative years absorbing The Smiths and Joy Division. It’s no surprise that his defiantly British sound is still attracting fans globally, and he’s collaborated with Mike Skinner, Jaykae, Skepta and French producer Hologram Lo, as well as reaching the ears of Pharrell Williams who played his track ‘Car Bomb’ on his Beats 1 show OtherTone.

Dave’s lo-fi 2-step single ‘Put You On My Shoulders’ and the Skepta-produced Jaykae collaboration ‘Every Country’ showcase his soulful, melancholic vocal and ability to paint honest pictures with his lyrics. “I could never make music for the sake of it,” Dave says. “I can only make music when I have something to say. So much mad shit has happened over the years so now I have some real stories to tell.”

2017 was a vital year for Murkage Dave as a recording artist. Through a handful of well-placed releases and features - including the gold certified ‘O.D’, on French rapper Nekfeu’s triple platinum selling ‘Cyborg’ album - he attracted a cult following of die-hard fans who have kept his music on heavy rotation, pushing his streaming figures into the thousands on a daily basis. Tracks like ‘Put You On My Shoulders’ and ‘Every Country’ received strong support on Spotify playlists, such as ‘Fresh Finds’, and made their way into regular rotation on BBC Radio 1 and 1Xtra, with backing from Jamz Supernova and MistaJam.

As well as his solo material, Dave is also a member of HALFBROTHER, the duo he formed with producer and vocalist SCALLY, which has received critical acclaim from publications such as i-D, The Fader and Paper Mag.

Outside of his work as a recording artist, Dave - who cut his teeth throwing parties in the Manchester rave scene - also runs TONGA, a club project in partnership with The Streets’ frontman Mike Skinner. The pair also host the Peak Times podcast which has built a religious following and in the coming year will be releasing exclusive episodes on Spotify featuring special guests. TONGA will be the official afterparty on every UK date of The Streets comeback tour this April and Dave will appear on the tour itself.

As a DJ, Dave plays regularly at London’s coolest night spots including Ace Hotel, Visions Video Bar and The Curtain, he has also played gigs for True Religion, Reebok, Blood Brother and the NME awards.

With so much ahead of him, 2018 is set to be his biggest year yet. “I’m very thankful to be in this position,” he says. “I didn’t always have fans waiting for new music and artists I grew up idolising getting into my stuff. It’s just up to me now to make the most of where I’m at.”