Oct 31, 2018 | By Luke Tebbutt
Dec 20, 2017
With the year drawing to a close, it’s time to reflect on what the music industry has been up to over the past twelve months. It’s been a jam-packed year that has brought us numerous music and retail crossovers, such as this limited edition Supreme/Michael Jackson collaboration. We’ve also witnessed the continual rise of tour merch, as musicians become the new retail superstars. This was also the year that Beyoncé brought the house down at the Grammys. While Cardi B’s “Bodak Yellow” became the longest reigning Number 1 by a solo female to date.
Oh and of course, R&B tunes made serious waves this year, and will continue to do the same in 2018. As a bit of an R&B connoisseur, that’s what happens when you were a kid in the 90s (a fab decade for classic r&b, followed by the early 00s), I love that R&B is having its moment in the sun again. This year we’ve seen artists such as Khalid, SZA, Daniel Cesar (Grammy nominated) and Princess Nokia break through into the mainstream. While Miguel, Kelela, Leela James and H.E.R are all back with new material. Looking ahead to 2018, it seems only fitting to highlight my three favourite artists who have made 2017 bearable and will continue to shine in the future.
If you’re thinking that you’ve heard this name somewhere before you are not wrong. Remember that hit 90’s film starring Will Smith… Bad Boys? Well inspired this, boy band MiC LOWRY said they chose the name as a way to keep the “90’s with them always”. Inspired by Blackstreet, Boyz II Men, Jagged Edge, Destiny’s Child, SZA, Byrson Tiller, these lads are mixing old skool feelings with fresh vibes! The Liverpool based, acoustic boy-band is experimenting with harmonies and creating a distinctive sound. Get to know their names Michael Welch, Ben Sharples, Kaine Ofoeme, Akia Jones and Delleile Ankrah aka MiC LOWRY. Oh and they’ve just finished supporting Justin Bieber on his 37-date European arena tour. I’m so excited to see their journey unfold and what 2018 holds for them. (Order tickets to their show on 16th March 2018).
With 313K Insta followers and growing, Sabrina Claudio is someone you should be getting to know. Influenced by her Cuban and Puerto Rican heritage, it goes without saying Latin music has impact her sound. Her sultry and sensual rhythms and laid back beats have me addicted (defo feeling some Sade vibes!)
Sabrina started covering songs on YouTube from the age of 14, so no big surprise her following has continued to grow.
The aesthetics for Stand Still music video are….how can I sum this up? Powerful, Raw and Beautiful. “It wasn’t interesting to me to do something that was gorgeous on point,” she told Vogue “The song is about time standing still and pretty much being frozen in a certain moment, so I wanted to represent the opposite.”
Born in Queens and raised in Morocco. 19-year-old, Dounia is a bad-ass woman whose sultry vocals and powerful rap lyrics make you stop and think. She is using her Instagram to challenge the cultural standards of beauty and celebrates her Moroccan heritage (just another reason to crush on her).
If you want to hear some real-talk about feminism and body positive attitudes, while listening to some sensual flows, then check out her gram. Like her fierce and authentic rap lyrics, she stands for honesty, unfiltered beauty and keeping it real – which has bought her a mass following.
In an interview with Time Magazine she said: “What I say is, hone what you like about yourself. I know this sounds mad pretentious, but: read more. You’ll be able to portray your points better, you’ll be more articulate. And that translates into your social and general confidence. You can find other lanes that make you more comfortable with yourself rather than just the physical. Other than just “I love my rolls today.” Go be really well-versed on a topic — and now you’re cool because you know so much about, like, science or anime.”
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