January hits and all you seem to hear is: “New Year, New Me!” Cue the eye roll… Instead of trying to change yourself into a “New You,” how about deleting the world “New” and inserting the words “Fresh” and “Improved” You. That is what the new year is all about anyway- not making yourself new and different, but instead growing and improving the already amazing You that you are. So let’s save the “New” for other concepts… such as trying new things, seeing new cities, eating new foods, and most importantly… listening to new music. The new year always brings talented new artists that are ready to conquer 2017 with their ambition and fresh sounds. And 2017 is no exception. Meet these 10 artists that will be all over your playlists this year. This is your #Tunesday playlist: New Year, New
2017 is all about using your voice to empower others with positive messages… and that is exactly what 18-year-old Declan McKenna is doing with his music – using it as a platform to inspire and call attention to important issues. Take his single “Brazil” for example, which criticizes the corruption within FIFA and world soccer. McKenna is more than just a songwriter with a guitar; he is a voice to be heard. His music cuts deep into the soul, consisting of upbeat, folk-like melodies and meaningful lyrics, bringing you positive vibes for 2017.
Ok, fine, I’ll admit it…. when I first heard someone mention Rag’n’Bone Man, I thought they meant some kind of man that runs around, sponsoring Rag & Bone attire. Yeah, just a little off…. But ANYWAYS. Rag’n’Bone Man is an artist you should still look up to for style, but also music inspo… because his voice will make your jaw drop so hard that you won’t be able to find it on the floor and pick it back up. His single “Human” has so much soul and depth and his lyrics are so truthful; it will cut right to the heart. Definitely on repeat for me all year long. His debut album comes out in February.
Billie Eilish’s debut single “Ocean Eyes” compares falling in love to free-falling off a cliff, surrounded by the intensity of napalm skies. The lyrics and the meaning of the song have a lot of depth for a singer songwriter that is only 14 years old. Eilish’s serene falsetto mixed with the peaceful percussion sounds have captured the attention of listeners all over the world (Proof – “Ocean Eyes” has racked up 2 million streams on Spotify now!). Definitely one to watch in the new year.
Hailing from South London, RAY BLK has been making music since she was nine years old, writing rap verses in her notebooks after watching Missy Elliot on MTV. BLK loves writing so much, she even studied English Literature in school, writing her first song about a girl who turns against men after having her heart broken – similar to Miss Havisham’s story in Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations. With her intelligent, literate lyrics and her soulful, R&B sound, Ray BLK will be conquering the 2017 charts in no time.
Who run the world? GIRLS. And in 2017, specifically Cristal Ramirez (vocals, guitar), Katie Henderson (guitar, vocals), McKenna Petty (bass) and Alisa Ramirez (drums) – the four members of female rock band The Aces. What is their musical style you ask? – Think Two Door Cinema Club mixed with HAIM. The Aces first single “Stuck” showcases their unique, funky rock sound and their female fierceness… 2017 GOALS.
My girl… Dua Lipa! I say that because I’ve already become OBsessed with this English singer, songwriter, and model (does she not resemble Emily Ratajkowski!?). I first heard her song “Blow Your Mind (Mwah)” on my Spotify Discover playlist and I instantly fell in love with her sultry sound and powerful vocals. She describes her sound as “dark pop” mixing catchy beats with a deep, soulful voice and emotionally-dark weighted lyrics. This Friday, look out for her new release – a collab with Martin Garrix titled “Scared To Be Lonely”. Lipa is also prepping to release her debut album later this year… so get ready to see a lot of this superstar.
Meet Laetitia Tamko, the multi-instrumentalist, producer, and singer of Vagabon. Hailing from New York City, Tamko found her inspiration and influence in the underground music scene. Tamko’s music is raw, yet powerful; emotional yet edgy. With her unique upbringing into music through the underground scene, Tamko hopes to inspire “weird girls, girls that are not celebrated, both in their communities and in the world. Obviously women of color, but specifically black women, because that’s who I represent.” (Pitchfork). Pitchfork describes her as the Indie Rock Game-Changer – and with her strong musical messages, we can see why.
The name Colony House stems from where the four band members – Caleb Chapman, Will Chapman, Scott Mills, and Parke Cottrell – grew up and called home; it was a humble apartment complex in Franklin, Tennessee. Today, the name now describes the band and their music – humble, comforting, and relatable. Stepping away from the rage of crazy synth and electronic beats, Colony House keeps it natural and old school – creating music with stripped-down instruments and organic indie-rock vibes. Their new album Only The Lonely is out now!
You might recognize her from the viral video of her song “Alaska” that literally made Pharrell Williams’ jaw drop, commenting that he has never heard anything sound like that before. Rogers never planned to become Internet famous; she admits “Alaska” was the only song she had ready in time for her class at NYU. However, the unexpected just means it was meant to be… and Rogers was meant to be a global musical superstar. “Alaska” now has more than a million streams on Spotify. She describes herself as a “banjo girl” but after studying abroad in France and becoming exposed to the EDM scene, she now incorporates cool synth beats to her folk-like lyrics – creating a sound like no other.
Born in South London, Sampha Sisay is a British singer, songwriter and producer who already has an impressive resume of clients. He has collaborated with global superstars such as Drake, Frank Ocean, Kanye West, and Jessica Ware. Now, Sampha is stepping out from the shadows and walking into the spotlight with his own music. Sampha has a voice that is perfectly imperfect – a raw, rasping falsetto that is completely natural and unaffected by the artificial sounds of a studio. One listen to his new single “(No One Knows Me) Like A Piano”, and you’ll see why Sampha will rise to Kanye-level fame in no time… his debut album coming out in February will be one of this year’s best.
Here is the full #TUNESDAY: NEW YEAR, NEW MUSIC playlist:
Comment below who your go-to 2017 artist will be. Happy listening!