The princess of grime has been off the scene for a few years now after a stint in Celebrity Big Brother
Small girl, big voice
Lady Sovereign might be little in stature at just 5ft 1, but her voice more than makes up for it. The princess of grime has been off the scene for the last few years, so what’s become of her?
Born Louise Amanda Harman, 30-year-old Sov grew up on a council estate in Wembley. She says: ‘I didn’t grow up in an extremely nice part of London, but no regrets.’ However, it wasn’t an easy beginning. Sov’s parents split when she was 11, and she had a hard time at school, confessing to bunking off and lighting fires in bins. She was expelled just before her GCSEs, leading to brief stints working in a bakery and a sports shop.
Music on the mind
Sov vowed to make a name for herself in music, inspired by the likes of Ms Dynamite, saying: ‘Her presence, her image, the way she does everything… She opened so many doors for us girls, MCs are real, they write their own stuff, they rap about what they know, the stuff around them.’ Sov began recording her own cheeky style of rap music and uploaded it online, but received bad feedback at first, admitting people told her: ‘You’re white. You’re a girl. You’re British. You’re crap.’ As for her MC, nickname, she got it after stealing a sovereign ring from a friend’s boyfriend.
Sov was signed to the Chocolate Industries record label in 2005 and collaborated with The Ordinary Boys. Tracks like 9 to 5 and Love Me Or Hate Me soon caught the attention of Jay Z, who gave her a deal with Def Jam after she freestyled for him, making her the first ever non-American woman on the label’s books.
Fall from grace
The rapper parted ways with Def Jam in 2009, releasing the album Jigsaw through her independent label Midget Records. TV beckoned for the gobby rapper and she appeared on Celebrity Big Brother in 2010, but was the third to be booted out of the house after a series of strops. Later that year in Australia, she was arrested and charged for assault and drunk and disorderly behaviour after spitting at a bouncer.
Lady Sov is still making music to this day. In addition, she can be found musing about cats and sharing pictures of home-cooked food on Instagram.