The — BBC: Sound of has been a countdown of music artists expected to do big things in the coming year. It’s been around since 2003 now and has predicted a number of now-successful artists. Much like the Mercury Music Prize, the BBC aims to give credit to up-and-coming artists for outstanding work in their genre, and to the music industry as a whole.
Each year 15 nominations go up for debate across a number of genres before a lucky winner is then decided. The winner obviously gets plenty of exposure across Radio 1 and the BBC, making the prize something that — money can’t buy’. Looking at previous winners we can also be pretty sure that the winner has a good shot of becoming successful. In fact there might only be one winner who hasn’t become a household name since the start. Let’s take a look at the previous winners, and let’s not forget these artists were relatively unknown at the time their award was presented.
- 2003 — 50 Cent. Today, we all know 50 Cent and his antics, and he was the first receiver of the award.
- 2004 — Keane. Although not massive at the moment, their commercial and feel good indie was pretty big for a few years.
- 2005 — The Bravery. Although they never became huge, their emotive and catch tracks were enough for them to bag the 2005 honour.
- 2006 — Corinne Bailey Rae. Her infectious soul tinged songs earned her the award in 2006, and since then she has become an extremely credible singer-songwriter.
- 2007 — Mika. You love Mika or hate him, but either way this was another great early spot by the BBC.
- 2008 — Adele. Adele is one of the biggest selling solo artists in the UK and in the world, so this honour proved the power and credibility of the award.
- 2009 — Little Boots. With her infectious pop tracks and identifiable style and sound, Little Boots earned the title in 2009.
- 2010 — Ellie Goulding. Ellie is young and ambitious, and we will be sure to see plenty from her in the next couple of years.
- 2011 — Jessie J. She is one of the most recognised and influential artists around at the moment and the BBC recognised this for the 2011 award. Her sond “Price Tag” has over 180 million views on YouTube!
This brings us to 2012, with another batch of budding artists seeking the pride of being named the BBC: Sound of 2012. We don’t know many of these names (yet), but if the form of the previous winners is anything to go by, we can be sure to see a lot more of them in the coming year or so.
The nominations for 2012 include A$AP Rocky, Azealia Banks, Dot Rotten, Dry The River, Flux Pavilion, Frank Ocean, Friends, Jamie N Commons, Lianne La Havas, Michael Kiwanuka, Niki & The Dove, Ren Harvieu, Skrillex, Spector and finally Stooshe.
Although an odd group of names, they all have something in common. They all write their own music and they’re all exceptionally talented. The award was to be handed to one of them, and although everyone championed their own style of music, it was Michael Kiwanuka who won.
Expect big things from the 24 year old singer-songwriter. His unique sound of rootsy-folk and soul has earned him underground accolades with artists such as Adele and Laura Marling, and Michael even performed on — Later. . . with Jools Holland’ to showcase his talent. There are sure to be many more highlights going forward, but all we can do for now is wish him the best of luck as he joins the ranks of great names that have emerged over the last 8 years.