rising artist spotlight

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Commit the name Jones to memory because this rising UK artist is going places. I’m absolutely in love with her delicate soulful voice and overall cool laidback vibe.

The 25-year-old teams up with London duo Honne for her latest single “Melt” which will appear on her debut LP, New Skin, out later this year in October. The breezy single finds the London chanteuse singing about that feeling two people get when they start dating- when the infatuation becomes so intense, you meld into one soul. We’ve all been there, right?

If her debut album is anything like her well-received EP, Indulge, released last year, it should be a winner. Give “Melt” a listen below, along with some other tracks off her Soundcloud account. I especially like her stripped-down cover of “How Deep Is Your Love” by Calvin Harris.

listen after the jump

m-o-who-do-you-think-of

Not to be confused with Danish singer MØ, this M.O (pronounced M point O) is an English female trio. Aside from the sorta annoying name, the group is actually quite fantastic, especially their latest single. Plus, I never met a girl group I didn’t like 😉

Who Do You Think Of?” is a calypso-tinged pop gem. Very catchy and extremely radio friendly. At least over the pond it will be. I’m sorta obsessed with it and think you might as well.

Watch the Charlotte Rutherford-directed music video below.

watch after the jump

Rising Artist Spotlight: Finnish Singer Benjamin

In: Donovan, Music
benjamin-body-music-video

When it comes to Scandinavian pop stars, Sweden is tops for its uncanny ability to export global sensation after another. Abba, Ace of Base, Robyn, Icona Pop, Tove Lo, Zara Larsson and The Cardigans are just a few that quickly come to mind. Rising artist Benjamin Peltonen, who simply goes by his first name, might just put Finland on the map.

The 19-year-old was an Instagram star before signing with Warner Music Finland. His first EP was released last year and achieved moderate success in his native homeland. His full-length debut album dropped just last month and features the sensational track “Body.” The pop anthem has potential to infiltrate several foreign territories including North America.

Check out the music video below directed by Hannes Honkanen. Benjamin serves up some light Jason Derulo realness.

watch after the jump

Jordan Fisher Debuts ‘All About Us’ Music Video

In: Donovan, Music
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Prior to Grease: Live, I never heard of Jordan Fisher. I’m pretty sure most of the viewers (unless you’re a tween girl) hadn’t heard of the 21-year-old actor previously either. With talent oozing out of every pore, I have a strong feeling, the Teen Beach star is here to stay.

Days after Grease: Live, Jordan showed off his pipes on “Counterfeit,” a track he uploaded to Soundcloud. It showed off his vocals quite nicely, especially that sexy falsetto of his. Definitely a promising start.

He’s back with his official debut single and accompanying visual to boot. “All About Us” is a slick and radio friendly number produced by Pop & Oak’s “Oak” Felder- he’s crafted singles for Rihanna and Alessia Cara to name a few. I’m a fan of Jordan’s single, which sounds a little bit like Nick Jonas’ “Jealous.”

“The video is really an introductory piece for me not only as an artist but also my visual direction and an overall sense of my music by stimulating the senses,” Jordan tells VIBE.” The collaborative efforts that were made to create this piece allowed me to simply live in my aesthetic playground for a day. Being able to do that with dancers, choreographers, director and stylist, who all happen to be friends of mine, was a dream.”

Check out the visual below directed by TK McKamy. If Jordan stays on this path, he could legitimately become the next Usher.

watch after the jump

andra-day-rise-up-video

Ever since her showstopping duet with Ellie Goulding at this year’s Grammys, Andra Day and her undeniable talent have started to earn more widespread recognition. Deservedly so, if you ask me. Her soulful jazz voice is truly a revelation.

Though the San Diego native released her inspirational anthem “Rise Up” last year, it’s picking up steam lately. Wisely, she’s debuted two new music videos to propel the empowering ballad even further.

The first cinematic visual is directed by M. Night Shyamalan which features a woman caring for her man who’s paralyzed. The other, dubbed the “Introspective Version” finds Day singing in the woods. Both compliment the track quite nicely.

Shyamalan isn’t the first acclaimed director Day has worked with. The 31-year-old teamed up with Spike Lee for her debut video, “Forever Mine.” Check out all three clips below.

watch after the jump

yuna-usher-crush

Yuna is a huge star in her native Malaysia, known for indie folk pop-tinged tracks. I first noticed the 29-year-old singer-songwriter with her killer cover of Nirvana’s “Come As You Are.” She’s about to release her fifth studio album and showing off a brand new sound.

It appears Yuna is transitioning to R&B. The tracks she’s shared off Chapters, out May 20, show off a sexier and more sensual vibe. It’s the most evident on her Usher collaboration, “Crush.” Girlfriend is serving up major Aaliyah vibes. Her voice is like butter.

Check out her Usher duet below, along with “Places To Go” produced by the legendary DJ Premier. Who knew Yuna had such urban swagger. I’m loving her new sound.

listen after the jump

Rising Artist Spotlight: Mackenzie Thoms

In: Donovan, Music
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Tori Kelly proved last year she didn’t need to win American Idol to make a huge splash in the recording history. Girlfriend became the “It Girl” of the year despite not even making the voting rounds. The 23-year-old singer was certainly the one that got away. Here’s another rising talent that the FOX singing competition rejected.

Mackenzie Thoms tried out for Season 11 of American Idol. Clearly he didn’t make it far because I don’t really remember him on the show. Like Tori proved, that doesn’t matter if you got mad skills.

The Seattle-raised singer made heads turn with his debut single “Conviction,” released last year. His latest, “Do Me All Again,” is even better. It’s R&B with a pop sensibility and radio friendly. Give it a listen below, along with his previous single.

“‘Do Me All Again’ is about the difficulty being in a relationship. Basically me asking the other person if being with me was worth the heartache. When I wrote this song it was with 2 of my friends when I was in a moment of vulnerability. I really wanted to be express my situation at the time. So that’s what I did. I hope when people listen they realize that nobody should ever be with a person who’s only giving or getting half of themselves.” – Mackenzie Thoms

listen to his music after the jump

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Initially, I was turned off by Pia Mia. I know she can’t help it, but I found her name borderline annoying. Silly, right? Anyway. Despite my attempt not to like her, the 19-year-old singer won me over with her Chris Brown-assisted single, “Do It Again.” She’s followed that up with an even more fantastic offering.

If you like “Sorry” by Justin Bieber, you’ll love “Touch.” Since the track was co-produced by BLOOD, the same person who assisted Skrillex on The Biebs song, it’s not surprising both tropical house-tinged tracks sound quite similar. In her case though, the summery vibe is fitting given her exotic heritage.

For the accompanying visual, the diva from Guam chose to film in Australia. Wise decision given her previous track charted quite well Down Under. Pia looks great in the Dave Meyers-directed music video, but the choreography is a bit pedestrian. Doesn’t really matter though, because “Touch” is sensational. It’s my new obsession. Check it out below.

watch video after the jump

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