Wiley Picks Up MBE Honor From Prince William

AllHipHop Staff

The grime star gets recognized by royalty.

(AllHipHop News) U.K. rapper Wiley visited Buckingham Palace to be made a Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE).

The grime music pioneer, 39, was named in Queen Elizabeth II's New Year's Honors List and received his award for services to music from Prince William, Duke of Cambridge.

After receiving the MBE, Wiley, real name Richard Cowie, said he was surprised the royals were aware of grime, an underground style of hip-hop he helped originate.

"I did think in the music industry you could do work that people would recognize, I always knew that part," he told the Press Association. "But I didn't know if, like, the royals would. I don't know why I felt like they would never know us."

Grime first emerged in London in the early years of the new millennium, when the genre was led by Wiley and his protege Dizzee Rascal but has enjoyed a resurgence in recent years, with new star Stormzy bagging two Brit Awards last week.

Wiley said he was delighted that a new generation of grime artists were now enjoying success.

"It's amazing man," he said. "I'm so proud, proud of the fact that these kids can do something. Stormzy is from today. He's not from my time, he's the evolution of what me and Dizzee (Rascal) and everyone else done."

The rapper said he hoped receiving the honor meant he could inspire others and would help him with his new ambition to educate young musicians.

"This could open up doors for me in terms of going back to teach, to help, because I don't care about myself anymore, I care about others," he said. "I feel like that's the way I get on in my life, it's about everyone else, and that's why I'm here."