It has been a good year for a lot of artists bursting unto the scene eager to be seen. It is not easy to be a musician because, personally, the best music asks for you to be yourself. When has that been easy to do? Thus, these are the new artists that had a blossoming 2017!
“Yaaasss!”, I say every time I hear her smoky vocals vape through tracks. Releasing a mixtape in 2016, Project 11, and being featured on Drake’s More Life, Ms. Smith is growing in rightful attention. The climb to the top is NEVER easy nor quick, but it is filled with little, relishable accomplishments.
I went to her show, and lets just stay she had the crowd wrapped around her finger. The “Tyrant” songstress felt like a sultry Selena making hearts sing “Bidi Bidi Bom Bom”. Yet, you HAVE to admire Kali’s hustle. She is 100% a self-taught musician, and it is not easy to gather the strength, patience, and faith in yourself to make the dream in your head a reality for your life.
Compared often to Adele, it may not seem obvious where her and Frances share the common-ground. They are vocally and artistically different, but they share a spiritual common-ground: growing up in love. Every single one of Adele’s albums are about maturing through the faults and foundations of your relationships, and Frances shares the same mentality. Usually with just her piano and her thoughts, she sings songs like open diaries, which makes her a “go-to” for the fellow Millennial looking to feel their emotions… not avoid them.
4. Joyner Lucas
Not only did this rapper give one of the most enriching, inclusive concerts of the year, his album, 508-507-2209, was a nosedive exploration into the excess and lack that define Hip Hop. Like many rappers, Lucas sings to the journey of going from material desolation to riches galore, but the journey from nothing to everything carries its own wisdom. From friends tragically lost to self-awareness gained, Joyner Lucas is one of the most soulfully insightful rappers of 2017.
Technically, these guys made their debut this year, and by how may sold-out show, I am SHOOKETH with this reality. There are certain artists that are blessed with a lucky spark, and can attract the masses as if they have always been before them, and Hippo Campus is, certainly, one of them. Yet, to be fair, they released several mixtapes that only proved Landmark, their debut album, was destined to become one in 2017.
Meshing Brazilian influences (Hello Samba!) with Electronica, Sofi Tukker are a duo you see when you want to dance. I’m not talking sway as much as rhythmically move, people! Watching them climb up the social media ladder to gain more music followers has left me beaming because…. they are AWESOME!
Another artist that made their “debut”, but is so seasoned in their musicianship, they feel classic. Jain is a creative genius, and this French Dance Kween took another leap this year at world domination. Seeing her show was like experiencing a dance-fest of positivity, and her album Zanaka is “go-to” for anyone eager to jolt up their day with sonic light.
#Mood… Talk about a duo that understand music should come over you like a whimsical wave. With the burst of electro into nearly EVERY genre, Lewis Del Mar’s rise from Brooklyn buzz to sold-out shows in NYC is a sign that their art is kismet.
If Borns and David Bowie had achild, and then handed him to The Clash, you might get close to the starry eccentricity that is Declan McKenna. He grapples with the passive and aggressive nature of music; undecided whether to hit or caress a note. The result is a fascinating show and debut album, What Do You Think About The Car?, that will only scale him higher into stardom.
Ruth B’s music is thoughtfully intimate. While most music is dedicated to love’s growth, she is focused on how love makes you individually grow. For her, it is not about how love leaves and enters yours life, but how it becomes the very foundation from which you rise into life. She is simple, clear, and riveting in sound.