Dizzee Rascal, 23, was born Dylan Mills, and grew up in Bow, east London. His father died when he was two and he was brought up by his mother. As a teenager, he began to DJ in local clubs, and at 16 he recorded his first single, I Luv U. In 2003, he became the first rapper to win the Mercury music prize, with his debut album, Boy In Da Corner. His new single from his third album, Maths + English, is called Dance Wiv Me. Next month, he plays Kendal Calling, Reading and Leeds festivals.When were you happiest?
On stage.What is your greatest fear?
My music not being relevant.What is your earliest memory?
Playing football on the estate in Bow, when I was four or five.What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
I swear too much.What is the trait you most deplore in others?
Chatting shit about me.What was your most embarrassing moment?
On Jimmy Kimmel Live! in Hollywood. They showed me doing my rehearsal and my trousers fell down. That day I didn't wear no underwear, and you could see my bare arse.Aside from a property, what's the most expensive thing you've bought?
The reversible gold and black jacket I wore in the Dance Wiv Me video - there are only two of them in the world, and it cost a couple of grand.What is your most treasured possession?
My life.What makes you depressed?
When I can't make the right song.Who would play you in the film of your life?
I'd have to. I had a little role in a film called Rollin' With The Nines.What is your most unappealing habit?
I fart and then I laugh.What is your favourite smell?
When a girl wears Coco Chanel.What is your favourite word?
'Me.'What is your favourite book?
Bruce Lee: Artist Of Life. I like his philosophy.What would be your fancy dress costume of choice?
Blacula.What is the worst thing anyone's said to you?
'Smoke some of this.'To whom would you most like to say sorry, and why?
To my mum, for being such a fucker when I was little.If you could go back in time, where would you go?
Ancient Egypt, because I'd love to see who really did all that.What was the best kiss of your life?
I've had a few of them.Who would you invite to your dream dinner party?
Tupac, Bob Marley, Bruce Lee, Pam Grier in her heyday, Barbara Windsor in her heyday, Beyoncé.Which words or phrases do you most overuse?
All the bad ones.What is the worst job you've done?
Sealing envelopes. My mum made me do it. There were 15 boxes - thousands of envelopes. We were up all night and I had to go to school the next morning. I hated it.What has been your biggest disappointment?
The music industry, for not being the magic carpet ride that you think it is before you get into it.
If you could edit your past, what would you change?A haircut. I tried to go for the Bobby Brown slant and people said I looked more like Grace Jones.When did you last cry, and why?
When a friend died recently in a car accident.How do you relax?
A blow job relaxes me.How often do you have sex?
Two or three times a day, if I can get away with it.What is the closest you've come to death?
Five years ago, I got stabbed six times in Ayia Napa.What single thing would improve the quality of your life?
Maybe a wife - a proper girl who I trusted and could be at one with.What keeps you awake at night?
Weed, ecstasy, anxiety, sex.What song would you like played at your funeral?
Tha Crossroads, by Bone Thugs-N-Harmony.What is the most important lesson life has taught you?
If you are going to work, you might as well follow your heart, because nothing in life is easy and if it's going to be hard, it might as well be what you really want.
Interview by Rosanna GreenstreetThe Guardian