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Rooftop Assembly

Rooftop Assembly are a grime & folk fusion project from London, blending rap poetry with old-school songwriting, accompanied by swooning strings and dubby beats. Their music brings together a plurality of voices and influences in true London style.  

The band’s story began during lockdown in 2020, when folk singer James Riley & grime MC Kayes Mensah joined forces, playing live-streamed gigs on a north London rooftop to raise cash for food banks. The concerts attracted national media coverage, funding from the Arts Council, inspired a large mural, and prompted an outpouring of community support. The shows culminated with James & Kayes collaborating with a full string quartet and drummer Emanuela Monni in a live concert that went viral on social media, prompting invitations to perform at festivals including Glastonbury.  

Since then they have been featured on BBC 6 Music, BBC Radio London, and been playlisted by Spotify editorial, as well as attracting backing from Help Musicians UK and playing countless concerts and festivals around the UK.  

Their debut EP ‘Storeys’ dropped in January ‘24 with a sold-out launch show in London, and a string of tour dates lined up throughout 2024. The new record showcases the ensemble’s groundbreaking fusion of styles; from highlife-infused grooves, to mythically-inspired grime balladry and the orchestral splendour of lead single “The Lanes” – a nostalgic rap paean to the band’s roots in Tottenham.