Kano is an English rapper known for his wit and technique on the mike. Prior to becoming known in the U.K. mainstream as a solo artist, he was a member of N.A.S.T.Y. Crew, an East London-based grime group. His first single, "Boys Love Girls," was an underground hit that served as a springboard for his solo deal with the Warner-supported 679 Recordings. The 2004 track "P's & Q's," produced by DaVinche, was his first release for the label. "Typical Me," a collaboration with Fraser T. Smith, was issued the following February, reached number 22 on the U.K. pop chart, and set up the moderately successful Home Sweet Home, an album that also involved productions from Diplo, Mike Skinner (aka the Streets), and Paul Epworth. He subsequently took the 2005 MOBO Award for Best Newcomer.
Kano and Smith worked even closer together on London Town, a 2007 follow-up propelled by the number 18 U.K. pop hit "This Is the Girl," featuring Craig David. The MC went independent with the less commercial 140 Grime Street (2008) and Method to the Maadness (2010), albums that nonetheless reached the Top 50 as he sustained his profile with appearances on tracks by Chase & Status and Gorillaz. After several other collaborations and mixtapes, a deal with Parlophone enabled the release of the fifth proper Kano album, Made in the Manor, in 2016. Also an actor, he appeared in the films Rollin' with the Nines and Tower Block, as well as the Channel 4 series Top Boy.