British Inmates Really Love Tupac, Rihanna and Drake

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Frank Micelotta/Getty Images

Frank Micelotta/Getty Images

E.J. Judge
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The daily grind of imprisonment can be tough, so much like us “free air breathers” outside the joint, inmates use music as a means to chill. And while school or work may feel like prison sometimes, us law abiding citizens are graced with several amenities those on lockdown are not; like an iPod, CD player or *gasp* a record player.

But prisoners in the UK have are relatively fortunate since they have a radio in each of their cells. According to NME, of the 84,000 inmates behind bars, 4,000 of them make requests to their very own radio station, National Prison Radio (the OTHER NPR).

Tupac sits atop the list of 20 Most Requested Artists among British inmates during 2012, followed by Rihanna (#4), Drake (#5), Lil Wayne (#15) and Pac’s east coast counterpart, The Notorious B.I.G., appearing further down the list at #9.

Those in the pen appear to have pretty eclectic taste, with Metallica (#7), Pink Floyd (#8) and Bob Marley (#14) also making an appearance. The full list is as follows:

1. Tupac
2. Vybz Kartel
3. K Koke
4. Rihanna
5. Drake
6. Akon
7. Metallica
8. Pink Floyd
9. Biggy Smalls
10. Gyptian
11. Jah Cure
12. Slipknot
13. UB40
14. Bob Marley
15. Lil Wayne
16. Eminem
17. Evanescence
18. Mavado
19. Devlin
20. Giggs

But how are they voting? Typically, both in the US and the UK, inmates don’t have access to the Internet, so forget that. There are inmate telephone systems, but those are typically reserved for interaction between inmates and their family or legal counsel. Of course, there’s always good ol’ reliable snail mail; inmates can write to the Prison Radio Association.

Obviously inmates won’t hear their requests for some time, but we hope NPR accepts shout outs.

“This song goes out to the fellas on D-BLOCK and Lil’ Shawty who is up for parole next week!”

- @ejjudge,

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