Doc Brown (rapper)
||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (January 2012)|
Brown in 2011
|Birth name||Ben Bailey Smith|
|Origin||Jamaican, White British|
|Genres||Comedy, Soundtrack, Hip-Hop|
|Occupations||Actor, Comedian, Screenwriter, Songwriter, Voiceover Artist|
|Years active||2002 – present|
|Associated acts||Mikis Michaelides, Mark Ronson, Example, De La Soul, Poisonous Poets, Lowkey, Natalie Williams, Kevin Mark Trail, Haggis Horns|
Early and personal life
The popularity of the monthly event[clarification needed] soared and soon Deal Real was attracting hip-hop celebrities from the USA, performing in the Comedy Store to promote their own European tours. The first to perform were the Jungle Brothers. Others included Pete Rock and CL Smooth, Slick Rick, The GZA, Black Eyed Peas, Rhymefest, Pharoahe Monch, Canibus and Cee Lo Green, as well as a host of DJs including the producer and frontman of the Business Intl, Mark Ronson.
The first gig Smith performed with Ronson was at the Fabric nightclub in the Barbican area of east central London. The line-up consisted of Ronson on guitar, Daniel Merriweather, Amy Winehouse and Beverly Tawiah on vocals, former Jamiroquai bassist Stuart Zender and the Scottish brass section The Haggis Horns.
Smith continued to tour with the band until spring 2007, rapping on stage alongside Lily Allen on the Kaiser Chiefs' cover "Oh My God", providing the Ghostface Killah vocals for the song "Ooh Wee" and performing his own lyrics on the instrumental cover of Kasabian's "LSF (Lost Souls Forever)".
In July 2011, a short film was released to accompany the song "Blighty", a song from the unreleased LP. The film features an interview with Smith at the end credits, in which he describes the film as an open project for young people to interpret his lyrics visually. The film was directed by photographer Kwame Lestrade and shot with the aid of various young people as part of a lottery funded youth project.
A chance phone call from former BBC Radio 1 host and comedy writer Danny Robins, for whom Smith had previously written some spoof music, led to Smith working as a script consultant on Robins’ BBC Radio 4 sitcom Rudy's Rare Records, a vehicle for veteran UK comedian Lenny Henry.
Smith then entered a national talent competition for comedians called So You Think You're Funny and his third ever stand-up gig was in the first round of the competition in spring 2008 at the Hobgoblin Pub in Forest Hill, South East London. Smith eventually made the last eight at the grand final in Edinburgh that August, an event in which by his own admission he "froze up", delivering what he saw as a disappointing performance.
Regardless, the performance led to interest from bookers, and Smith began a new incarnation as a professional stand-up comedian in October 2008. Since then he has performed at the prestigious Tartan Ribbon event at the Edinburgh Festival, debuted his own one-man show Unfamous, which sold out its run at both the Pleasance Theatre in Edinburgh and London’s Soho Theatre. He also gave a one-off performance of Unfamous at the indigO2 at the The O2 in March 2011. In April 2011 Smith was invited to take the show to the Melbourne International Comedy Festival for one month. On the weekend of 20 April 2012 Smith opened for comedian Ricky Gervais as support on two shows at the Folketeateret in Oslo, Norway.
Film and television
In November 2011 Smith registered his full name as a performer with Equity and Spotlight and has since appeared as an actor and writer as Ben Bailey Smith, while retaining the moniker Doc Brown solely for stand-up and music work.
Since moving into the world of comedy, Smith has taken on various roles in front of and behind the camera in both film and television. As an actor he has played roles in the acclaimed BBC series Rev and Miranda, as well as Channel 4's The Inbetweeners as a drug dealer. Smith also provided voices for the characters Budge and Koggs on the cult CBBC series Big Babies for which he also sang the theme tune. Smith also appeared on another CBBC show called The Slammer, in which acts fight to win their freedom from the slammer by gaining applause from the audience.
In film he has played a role in Ben Miller's Huge as well as a co-starring role in the thriller Other Side of the Game. Smith is also credited as a songwriter alongside collaborator Mikis Michaelides on the Joe Cornish-directed film Attack the Block. The character Hi Hatz is often seen and heard playing songs he has recorded. These were written and recorded by Smith and re-voiced by the actor Jumayn Hunter.
In January 2012, a 13-part teen comedy-drama for the BBC called 4 O'Clock Club aired on CBBC and BBC2, on which Smith is the co-creator, co writer, co-star and musical director, again alongside Michaelides. He later announced after its finale on 30 March that a second series was in production. Also he acts the voice and sings the theme song of CBBC's strange hill high his character is Mitchell Tanner.
In February 2013, Smith appeared in an episode of Ricky Gervais' show Derek as Deon, a criminal who performed his community service through working in a care home. In March Smith appeared as urban solo artist Dom Johnson in a mini-episode of The Office for Comic Relief called The Office Revisited and raps to David Brent's song "Equality Street".
|2003||Poisonous Poetry (with Poisonous Poets)||QBM/BMG|
|2004||Citizen Smith: Volume One||Bust-A-Gut Productions|
|2005||The Document||Bust-A-Gut Productions|
|2006||Citizen Smith: Volume Two||Bust-A-Gut Productions|
|2008||Another Way (unreleased)||Bust-A-Gut Productions|
- Barton, Laura (4 March 2005). "We are family: Award-winning novelist Zadie Smith talks to up-and-coming British rapper Doc Brown, better known to her as Ben, her younger brother". The Guardian. Retrieved 28 December 2010.
- "Doc Brown". United Agents. Retrieved 2012-06-16.
- Dessau, Bruce (31 August 2010). "Heard the one about Zadie Smith’s kid brother, Doc Brown?". The Evening Standard. Retrieved 23 April 2012.
- Doc Brown wwebsite.
- "Blighty by Doc Brown (featuring Natalie Williams) MUSIC VIDEO". YouTube. 2011-07-04. Retrieved 2012-06-16.
- blakeney, baz (4 April 2011). "Review: Doc Brown in Unfamous". Herald Sun. Retrieved 23 April 2012.
- "Ricky Gervais / Hva skjer? - Folketeateret" (in (Norwegian)). Folketeateret.no. Retrieved 2012-06-16.
- "Ben Bailey-Smith". United Agents. Retrieved 2012-06-16.
- Soundtracks for Attack the Block, IMDb.
- 17 June 2012 9:30am - 9:58am (1970-01-01). "CBBC - 4 O'Clock Club". BBC. Retrieved 2012-06-16.
- www.bbc.co.uk/cbbc/strangehill high
- Duerden, Nick (6 February 2013). "Ben Bailey Smith: Out of the shadow, into the limelight". The Independent. Independent Print Limited. Retrieved 19 March 2013.
- Fitzmaurice, Sarah (15 March 2013). "'It's my life': David Brent returns to screens as an aspiring music artist and debuts his political reggae song Equality Street on Comic Relief". Daily Mail. Associated Newspapers Limited. Retrieved 19 March 2013.