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DJ Banksy? Recent Music Tour Announcement Sparks Rumours About Anonymous Artist's Identity

A Banksy mural | Image credit: Reuters

A Banksy mural | Image credit: Reuters

Massive Attack founder Robert Del Naja has long been thought to be the real Banksy. Will the music tour reveal the artist's true identity?

After revolutionising the world of street art, it seems anonymous British graffiti artist Banksy is now set to conquer the music scene. According to reports, the artist has recently announced plans to embark upon a music tour over this summer where he will be DJing. Just like anything Banksy, however, the proposition is not as simple as it sounds. The endeavour has been dubbed a “hybrid DJ, art and interpretative dance show”.

If reports are to be believed, Banksy is set to embark on a music tour where he plans to perform as a DJ. According to MixMag, the show will fuse the musical heritage of Bristol along with the culture of street art. The report also quoted Banksy as saying that he will be playing “140 BPM dubstep wobblers picked up at Idle Hands over the years”.

According to a press release by the artist, the move was inspired by British Hyperdub musician William Bevan. The latter, who initially remained anonymous, recently exposed his identity through a selfie reveal.

Does this mean that the world will finally get to see who Banksy is? The announcement has once again led to rumours that the artist might really be musician Robert ‘3D’ Del Naja, who founded and is an active member of the Bristol-origin electronic music band ‘Massive Attack’.

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The rumours of Banksy really being Massive Attack’s Robert Del Naja gained traction in 2017 when British musician Clifford Joseph Price MBE aka DJ Goldie accidentally referred to the artist as ‘Rob’ during an interview with Scroobius Pip on the Distraction Pieces podcast.

In 2016, a Scottish journalist by the name of Craig Williams also reached the same conclusion after a long-drawn out investigation into the real identity of Banksy, who shot to fame in 1997 for his ‘Mild Mild West’ mural.

Yet another theory is that in the 2017 podcast, Goldie’s slip of the tongue referred not to Rob Del Naja but to Robin Gunningham, the man first identified as Banksy by Daily Mail in 2008.

DJ Banksy

Banksy’s DJ tour announcement seems to have brought the spotlight back on who the real Banksy is, a mystery that the artist has managed to guard despite the global popularity of his art – which has now morphed into a brand. His eccentric ‘tricks’ such as the burning of his own artwork post-auction, exorbitantly conspicuous exhibitions and the ‘Walled Off Hotel’ alongside the West Bank in Israel, the identity of the British artist remains a secret.

Speaking about his DJing plans in a recorded message that he shared on his Finsta page, Banksy said he hoped “the public are able to interpret the subliminal messaging” in his upcoming endeavour. Well, the artist can rest assured that subliminal aspects notwithstanding, many across the world would be watching his website with peeled eyes to find out the dates of the concerts.

first published:April 02, 2021, 16:45 IST