BBC Sound of and New Artists for 2016

Artists to Watch 2016BBC Sound of 2016New Artists 2016New Music 2016New Music Talent 2016+-

It’s that time of year once more when we look to the future to see which lucky, plucky musicians stand to make a career out of their vocations. This year’s accumulative longlist numbers 102. I’ve excluded artists from other lists which I have myself featured in previous years, and anyone who has already released a proper official album - full-length mix-tapes and such are fine.


My short list (Top of the Props) is narrowed to a selection of just 11 - consisting of artists who get 3 or more mentions in those various lists. I am very happy to see Jack Garrat at the top of the tree, as he really embodies what future music-making is all about - a talented multi-instrumentalist and vocalist / songwriter, he layers up and loops tracks building up with his own percussion, synth bassline, rhythm guitar and effects. He is superb live, as he creates his backing on the fly - doing improv drum fills and guitar and keyboard solos as he sings. I also already have a load of singles and EP’s by the highly prodigious Mura Masa, whom I rate almost as highly.


I find that the BBC is usually the best guide to finding the most likely pop successors. It’s just a shame really that so few actually make it through the mangle. You can check through previous years to see the handful who manage to sustain a meaningful and rewarding career in this industry. For too many, music ends up as a hobby or a way in reserve second job, as only those who gain a significant following can derive a sufficent living standard from music alone.


There’s plenty of variety as always - and as always I gravitate towards Electronic, R&B and Soul ...


Top of the Props


By number of supporters then alphabetical:

Jack Garratt [Soulful Electro-Pop] (AM, BBC, Gw, MTV, Sp, +) x6



Nao [Sharp, Modern Neo-Soul] (AM, BBC, Gg, Gw, Sp, Id) x6



Blossoms [Contemporary Slickly-Produced Indie Rock] (AM, BBC, Gw, MTV, Sp) x5



Frances [Emotive Piano Pop] (AM, BBC, Gw, Id, Sp) x5



Mura Masa [Slick Modern Electronic-tinged Pop] (AM, AR, BBC, Gw, Sp) x5



Billie Marten [Elegant Acoustic Folk] (AM, AR, BBC, Gw) x4



Rat Boy [Punky Indie Rock] (AR, BBC, Gw, MTV) x4



Alessia Cara [Slick R&B Pop] (BBC, Gg, Gw) x3



Loyle Carner [Fluid Soulful UK Hip-Hop] (AR, BBC, Gw) x3



Mabel [Mini-Neneh, Soulful Pop] (BBC, Gw, Sp) x3



WSTRN [West London R&B Rap Collective] (BBC, Gw, MTV) x3


Accumulative Longlist



  • Alessia Cara (BBC, Gg, Gw) x3
  • Anderson .Paak (Gg)
  • Anne-Marie (MTV, Sp) x2
  • April Towers (Gw)
  • Astrid S (Gw)
  • August Eve (Id)
  • Aurora (Gw, Id) x2
  • Barns Courtney (Gw)
  • Belly (Gg)
  • The Big Moon (AR, Gw) x2
  • Billie Marten (AM, AR, BBC, Gw) x4
  • Black Foxxes (Gw)
  • Black Honey (Gw)
  • Blossoms (AM, BBC, Gw, MTV, Sp) x5
  • Bonkaz (Gw, MTV) x2
  • Bright Young People (Gw)
  • Broken Hands (Gw)
  • Clairity (Id)
  • Clean Cut Kid (AM, Gw) x2
  • Cloves (Id)
  • Cold Ocean Lies (Gw)
  • Conrad Sewell (Id)
  • Cool Amerika (Gg)
  • Dead! (Gw)
  • Diet Cig (Gw)
  • Dua Lipa (BBC, Gw) x2
  • Du Blonde (Gw)
  • Elohim (Id)
  • Emma Blackery (Gw)
  • Eryn Allen Kane (Gg)
  • Fletcher (Id)
  • Formation (Gw)
  • Frances (AM, BBC, Gw, Id, Sp) x5
  • Gavin James (Sp)
  • Get Inuit (Gw)
  • Gilligan Moss (Gw)
  • Haelos (Gw)
  • Hannag Lou Clark (Gw)
  • Hinds (Gw)
  • Hippo Campus (Gw)
  • ho99o9 (Gw)
  • Honne (Gw, Sp) x2
  • Izzy Bizu (BBC, Gw) x2
  • Jack Garratt (AM, BBC, Gw, MTV, Sp, +) x6
  • The Japanese House (AR, Gg)
  • Kay IDK (Gg)
  • Jay Prince (Gw)
  • J Hus (BBC, Gw) x2
  • Jones (Id, Sp) x2
  • Kamaiyah (Gg)
  • Kero Kero Bonito (Gw)
  • Kiiara (SK)
  • Kiko Bun (Gw)
  • Kojey Radical (AR)
  • LÉON (Id, Sp) x2
  • Lil Uzi Vert (Gg)
  • Love Ssega (AR)
  • Loyle Carner (AR, BBC, Gw) x3
  • Mabel (BBC, Gw, Sp) x3
  • Marlon Williams (Gw)
  • Matoma (Sp)
  • Max Pope (Sp)
  • Meg Mac (Id)
  • Miya Folick (Gw)
  • Mura Masa (AM, AR, BBC, Gw, Sp) x5
  • Nai Harvest (Gw)
  • Nao (AM, BBC, Gg, Gw, Sp, Id) x6
  • Nef the Pharaoh (Gg)
  • Neon Waltz (Gw)
  • Nimmo (Gw, MTV) x2
  • Oceean (Gw)
  • Oscar (Gw)
  • Petite Meller (Gw)
  • Pixx (Gw)
  • PNB Rock (Gg)
  • Pom Poms (Id)
  • Pretty Vicious (AR, Gw) x2
  • Pwr Bttm (Gw)
  • Rat Boy (AR, BBC, Gw, MTV) x4
  • Rationale (AM, MTV) x2
  • Roy Woods (Gg)
  • Samm Henshaw (Sp)
  • Section Boys (BBC, Gw) x2
  • SG Lewis (Gw, MTV) x2
  • Sigala (Id, MTV) x2
  • Slutface (Gw)
  • Sofi De La Torre (Id)
  • Spring King (AM, AR) x2
  • Steve James (Id)
  • Sundara Karma (Gw)
  • Tala (AR)
  • Tigercub (Gw)
  • Tiggs Da Author (Gw)
  • Tkay Maizda (Id)
  • Tory Lanez (Gg)
  • Trampolene (Gw)
  • Vant (AR, Gw) x2
  • Vitamin (Gw)
  • Will Joseph Cook (Sp)
  • WSTRN (BBC, Gw, MTV) x3
  • Yout Man (Gw)
  • Zak Abel (AM)
  • Zibra (Gw)



AM = Apple Music
AR = Amazing Radio (
Gg = Globalgrind (
Gw = Gigwise (
Id = Idolator (
SK = Personal selection
Sp = Spotify
+ = Brits Critics’ Choice prize for 2016

Add New Comment
You must be logged in to comment.

Did you find this content useful?

Thank you for your input

Thank you for your feedback

Blog Navigation
Blog Navigation

2020 24

Driving business at some of the world's most forward thinking companies

Our Chosen Charity

Humanity Direct

And delivering industry leading awards

2016 British Media Awards - Technology Provide of the Year - Silver
2014 PPA Connect Awards - Procurement Leaders awarded Event Brand of the Year
2014 PPA Digital Publishing Awards - Procurement Leaders awarded Business Media Digital Brand of the Year (Again!)
2014 PPA Awards - Procurement Leaders awarded Business Media Brand of the Year (Again!)
2014 AOP Digital Publishing Awards - Procurement Leaders awarded Best Business to Business Website
2013 PPA Awards - Procurement Leaders awarded Independent Publisher Digital Product of the Year
2013 PPA Awards - Procurement Leaders awarded Business Media Brand of the Year
2013 PPA Digital Publishing Awards - Procurement Leaders awarded Business Media Digital Brand of the Year