Grime superstar Stormzy made a special unannounced appearance at the annual Pro Sound Awards last night to present the Best Producer Award to its inaugural winner Fraser T Smith.
In a surprise appearance at the sixth annual Pro Sound Awards, the Glastonbury 2019 headliner explained to an audience of 150+ pro audio professionals that he felt compelled to deliver the award to Smith in person.
“Besides being an incredible producer, Fraser is the most genuine, incredible soul, heart man I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting,” said Stormzy. “Working with this guy is beautiful. If you see us in the studio is a beautiful partnership. He’s allowed me to realise my true ability, my true talent, he’s pushed me and I always say, If it wasn’t for Fraser I don’t think I’d have been able to realise the artist I could be if it wasn’t for Fraser.
"For an artist it can sometimes be very self-serving, like, We’re so sick and we’re doing all this shit, but honestly I don’t think I’d be able to walk with the confidence I walk in if it wasn’t for Fraser shaping me, mentoring me, guiding me, being my therapist at times, and of course being the fucking top boy producer of life! I can’t thank him enough. And here’s to many more albums and more fucking Grammys and awards!”
On receiving his award, Smith said: “I’m very emotional. I honestly didn’t know that this guy, my brother was going to be up here. Thank you to the PSNEurope team for this award, it’s incredible. Stormzy has shown me a lot of love, which is incredible, but without guys like this, everybody in this room and what we all do pales into insignificance without people like Stormzy and other great artists we’ve all worked with. So, Stormzy, long live the king. Thank you.”
Smith has co-written, mixed and produced seven Number One singles in the UK, two Billboard Number One singles in the US, and contributed to 16 Number 1 albums including producing Stormzy’s acclaimed Number 1 debut album Gang Signs & Prayer, which won best album of the 2018 Brit Awards. Other artists Smith has worked with include, Drake, Sam Smith, Cee Lo Green, Florence and The Machine and Gorillaz.
Other special achievement awards given out on the night included the Outstanding Contribution Award which was presented to L-Acoustics founder and loudspeaker pioneer Christian Heil and the 2018 Company Of The Year Award received by Finnish studio monitor manufacturer Genelec. With Red Bull Studios winning the first ever Pro Sound Campaign Award for it's Normal Not Novelty programme. You can view the full list of winners here.
Daniel Gumble, Editor of PSNEurope said: “What an incredible evening. It was an absolute honour to have so many incredibly talented people under one roof to celebrate what has been another great year in audio. Stormzy’s surprise appearance to present Fraser T Smith with the event’s first ever Best Producer Award was a truly iconic moment in the event’s history, and shows just how far we’ve come since it started out six years ago.
“It was also fantastic to see so many exciting producers and engineers just breaking into the industry turn out in force. These are the people shaping the future of our industry, so it’s a real honour for us to be able to celebrate with them as well as those already long-established in the business.
“Congratulations to all of this year’s winners and nominees, and thank you to everyone who came out to make this the best Pro Sound Awards to date.”