There are very few people in this world who can legitimately claim to have influenced a generation, but Grant Marshall, a.k.a Daddy G, is most definitely a member of that elite group.
Proudly born and bred in the south west of England to West Indian parents, this Bristolian is a founding father of the incredible blend between hip hop and electronica that became known globally as 'Trip Hop' and went on to soundtrack many lives throughout the 1990s and beyond. This unique and new genre came straight out of Bristol with not only Massive Attack flying the flag but also other, now industry heavyweights, such as Tricky and
In 1982 alongside Miles Johnson and Nellee Hooper, Daddy G set on a path that was to see him explode onto the worldwide stage as one of the cornerstones in the evolution of dance music. The trio joined forces and later invited Robert Del Naja (3D), Claud Williams (Willy Wee), Andrew Vowles (Mushroom) and Adrian Thaws (Tricky), forming the 'The Wild Bunch' sound system - a sound system that became part of the foundations of an entire musical movement, a movement that still influences today.
The Wild Bunch were a key part of the fusion of black and white music and culture, bringing together communities wherever they landed. Infamous for their warehouse and free party events - alongside their famous residency at The Dugout Club in Bristol. Their sets. as with St Paul's Carnival, are still talked about today. The Wild Bunch soon signed 4th & B'way Records. After a 1986 tour of Japan and an iconic sound clash with Soul II Soul at St
Barnabas crypt in Bristol, the collective had begun to morph into something much bigger for Daddy G, 3D, Mushroom and Tricky.
While Nellee and Milo were busy working with The Wild Bunch and DJing in Japan, Daddy G set up Massive Attack in 1988 with fellow Bristol producers Smith and Mighty. They released "Any Love" as Massive Attack's first single featuring Carlton McCarthy and Daddy G on vocals, which were recorded live at a Wild Bunch event and sampled back into the track.
With the return of 3D, Mushroom and Nellee, alongside the help of singer-songwriter Neneh Cherry and her singer-songwriter and producer husband Cameron McVey, Massive Attack's launch went stratospheric and by the release of their debut album 'Blue Lines' that came out on Circa (part of Virgin Records) in 1991 with Daddy G on vocals, guitar, keyboards and as a producer, they had become a household name.
Having an instantly recognisable voice after narrating the lyrics of 'Five Man Army', he's undeniably an integral part of dance music's DNA. Daddy G's deep and rich tones became an invaluable layer in the fabric of Massive Attack's infamous sound, almost like an instrument in itself.
With each year that went past, more and more accolades rolled in. Labelled "Greatest Album of All Time", "Greatest Song of All Time" by the likes of heavyweights in media circles - the Guardian, Rolling Stone, Q, NME, MTV and many more, each outlet lapped up everything coming out of the Massive Attack studio and from the wider Bristol sound.
As part of the MTV generation, Massive Attack's music videos were at the forefront of innovation with 'Teardrop' winning the Best Video category at the 1998 MTV Awards, the same year they picked up Best Album for 'Mezzanine'. And with a Brit Award, MTV Euro Award and Q Award naming the band the Best Dance Act under their belts, it's not at all bold to say they have achieved colossal success.
Throughout his career Daddy G has been a hugely respected DJ, one who has always shone a light on multiple genres during his DJ sets. From his roots in Reggae to Punk, US House and Hip Hop, his sets are an eclectic mix of music that inspires and motivates him - a style he has championed and proudly stuck to for over four gigantically successful decades.
Alongside his sets in clubs across the globe, Daddy G has also been part of many different projects. From the jointly made film called 'Ring The Alarm' made with DJ and Director Don Letts, about the legendary DJ Derek to BBC documentaries such as 'Soul Britannia' and the 2016 documentary celebrating the 25th anniversary of 'Blue Lines'. Daddy G has also provided critically acclaimed mixtapes for the likes of BBC 6Music and produced his own DJ Kicks album.
For an artiste that has experienced so much, one who has a discography many envy and a gig list of dreams, it's astonishing his passion for underground talent and the raw connection to his audience that comes with DJ'ing remains so strong - but it most certainly does. Daddy G is the same true blue music champion that he was 40 years ago and will forever be every ounce that.