Future Bubblers announce Year 7 candidates22 June 2022 - Press release
10 new, unsigned artists chosen for Gilles Peterson-backed talent development scheme
The Future Bubblers team are pleased to announce 10 new artists selected for Year 7 of their talent discovery and artist development scheme. An expansion of the Gilles Peterson and Brownswood Music network, the team have been continuously supported by Arts Council England to develop unsigned talent and build audiences for left-field music.
Each year the final Bubblers are selected from a countrywide open call for aspiring musicians via a no-frills, no barriers application process. The Future Bubblers ethos is firmly cemented in the underground and alternative music scene with all those selected marrying up to this. Bubblers are paired with an industry mentor who is handpicked to suit the individual needs of the new musicians and from there, the fun begins. Each Bubbler receives a number of opportunities that are designed to set them up professionally. Offering; one-to-one production workshops from music software company, Ableton, performances at live Future Bubblers showcases, recording live sessions from the iconic Brownswood Basement, professional press shots, PR and radio advice and beyond the year, long-term support throughout their career.
Future Bubblers aim is to promote and encourage music across the country with a particular focus outside of London. Promoting and motivating artists in the lesser supported cities will ultimately aid in creating micro music cultures across the country hopefully creating the desired ripple effect. The previous 5 years focus cities have included; Salford, Nottingham, Hull, Sheffield, Southampton, Liverpool, and Wolverhampton. Last month, The Future Bubblers hosted their own stage at Brighton’s The Great Escape festival which saw performances from previous Bubblers Neone The Wonderer, Madi Saskia, Plumm and more. As they continue to strengthen their cultural relevance, their third and most recent collaboration with Tommy Jeans marked an All-star showcase; headlined by Dreya Mac, A.G and Odeal at Tommy Hilfiger’s London flagship store.
Below, you can read the full breakdown of the 10 Bubblers and the mentors they’ve been assigned.
A multidisciplinary artist blending bilingual lyricism and hypnotic harmonies, Romy Nova’s sonic landscape switches between light and shade. Influenced by jazz, hip-hop, world music and various dance scenes, she has previously performed with Boy Blue Entertainment and Zoonation at the renowned Barbican and the Royal Festival Hall as a dancer and musician. Her sound explores art as a means of catharsis, an intention manifested through her broken yet tender movement reflecting both fierceness and vulnerability.
Mentor - Dave Okumu
Dave Okumu is among the UK’s most acclaimed and prolific musical artists. Working across production, songwriting and musical direction, Okumu has spent two decades collaborating, performing and recording, contributing his dynamic and diverse talent to an extensive range of records and cultural moments. His work with Jessie Ware began in 2010 when he co-wrote and produced her Mercury Prize-nominated debut album Devotion (2012). Okumu was also among the Mercury Prize winners in 2009, when his band The Invisible were nominated for their debut
album The Invisible. Other artists with whom Okumu has worked with include Adele, Amy Winehouse, Arlo Parks, Beck, Bilal, Connie Constance, Grace Jones, Ghost Poet, Jordan Rakei, King Sunny Ade, Lianne La Havas, Nilufer Yanya, Paloma Faith, Rosie Lowe, St Vincent, Theo Parrish, Tony Allen and Yoko Ono. In 2018, the University of London awarded Okumu with an Honorary Fellowship of the College, in recognition of his significant achievements and contributions to music. Today, Okumu remains unrivaled in his ability to effortlessly span musical communities, genres, cultures and scenes.
Nouria Bah is a musician, vocalist and producer. Aiming to establish herself as an artist and composer she combines a love of close harmonies, field recordings and catchy baselines to create her very own distinctive homemade grooves. With roots in Senegal and Guinea, Nouria grew up in Maryland before moving to London in 2011 where she has since contributed to various projects, including an experimental opera based on social migration of bees at The Brunel Tunnel Museum.
Mentor - Duncan Ellis
Well-known British manager Duncan Ellis has launched a record label and publishing company under the Atlas Artists brand.For the past 13 years Ellis has successfully managed and helped develop artists including The Young Knives, The Rumble Strips, Foals, Everything Everything, Lianne La Havas and Kodaline. His company’s current managed roster comprises of Skinny Living and Face.
Ellis’s management firm have now added ‘label’ and ‘publishing’ arms to the company’s creative output, with the recorded music side working in tandem with Sony‘s Red Essential and the publishing company teaming up with Kobalt.
Hailing from Birmingham, Landel (real name Oli) is a versatile alt-R&B artist who incorporates running themes of love and relationships throughout his music. His West Midlands background has influenced his unapologetic approach to music inspiring his desire to avoid labeling his sound completely. His IG handle @landelblaac is an anagram of “All Balanced” which reflects his intentions and aims for the future both in his career and personal goals.
Mentor - Janelle Fraser
After graduating with a Degree in Media & Psychology Janelle began interning at ILUVLIVE, a live music events company showcasing the best of emerging homegrown talent around the UK. Previous acts include the likes of Ed Sheeran, Jessie J, Tinie Tempah, Ella Mai, Chip, Emeli Sande. During her time at ILUVLIVE she also consulted on event managements and coordinated the first ever GRM Rated Awards showcasing the best of the UK’s Grime and Rap scene. With her experience in events management she was approached to help out on a new venture into the world of touring, first starting out with Wretch 32. She worked as a tour manager throughout the summer and ended up having a love and passion for the touring world. Since then she has gone on to work with the likes of Stormzy, Dave, Stefflon Don, Hamzaa, Mostack, Mist & Ray Blk to name a few.
Janelle was approached by Tim Blacksmith & Danny D to join their publishing venture Stellar Songs in 2017. This was her first time working in the world of publishing but none the less a challenge she welcomed. Stellar already had a strong existing roster including the likes of Charli XCX, Sam Smith, Stargate and Normani. Her new role as an A&R was to discover the hottest and freshest new talent first.
Born and raised in Stockholm, singer, songwriter Ney Liqa moved to London to further immerse herself in the culture. Citing 90’s and 00’s trip-hop and garage as some of her key influences, it was the Swedish pop scene that kick started her journey and inspired her to begin writing music. Since writing her first song at 14 in order to apply for music school, she never imagined her musical journey extending thus far.
Mentor - Emily Kendrick
Emily works as Director of Campaigns for much-loved independent music imprints XL Recordings and Young. She has overseen campaigns for Thom Yorke, Arca, The xx, Låpsley, KAYTRANADA, Radiohead, Ibeyi and ADELE, amongst others. Her role encompasses development of strategy, marketing and promotions and co-ordinating the international teams across the full breadth of each artist’s campaign. Her portfolio includes experiential events for Radiohead, The xx, Thom Yorke, Jamie xx, Jack White and Everything Is Recorded. With roots in the UK rave scene, XL Recordings has gone on to become a multi-faceted cultural trendsetter.
Ireland-born, West London-raised Coex sits within the Electronic musical landscape, stemming from his teenage years which were spent playing the piano and acoustic instruments. Emerging onto the London indie scene as a drummer aged 15, Coex played across various backstreet under-filled London venues where he was forced to lie about his age. Basing his sonics on his mood, he takes external influences from ambient, punk, grunge and avant garde styles. Initially music and songwriting was a form of therapy but has now transitioned into something entirely new after discovering how synths can be used to open a whole new world of expression.
Mentor - Alex Patchwork
Alex started out as a music journalist before transitioning into working for record labels such as Soul Jazz Records, Brownswood Recordings / Gilles Peterson Worldwide and he currently works at Ninja Tune and Brainfeeder as a project manager running campaigns. He also previously ran his own label / club night Earnest Endeavours for a few years, DJed a bit as Patchwork Pirates with two friends (that's where the "patchwork" tag comes from) and still enjoys messing about producing music, most notably as The Diabolical Liberties with Rob Gallagher.
Jackie Moonbather is a Sheffield born and bred artist defined by his DIY approach to music-making. His introduction to music began at 12 after joining a local punk band where he used the influences of his hometown to share his genre-defying sound. The singer, songwriting and producer looks to build on his distinctive sonic which fuses hip-hop grooves and luxurious melodies ahead of gaining production credits for fellow musicians far and wide.
Mentor - Ellie Best
After spending her teenage years working at record stores, venues & festivals, Ellie Best joined RCA records as their press intern in 2018. Now Promotions Manager, she supports the promotions team as well as plugging her own roster of RCA artists to national radio. Campaigns worked on include: Lil Nas X, Miley Cyrus, Mimi Webb, Aitch, Bring Me The Horizon, Jake Bugg, P!nk, BROCKHAMPTON. She’s passionate about supporting the next generation of music execs, and has taken part in many mentoring programmes including recently Creative Mentoring Network & Rip It Up.
Sian Arli (Arli)
Birmingham-born, London based producer and vocalist Arli originally built her name as a Grime MC in the early 2000’s. After a ten-year hiatus that allowed her to expand her sonic palette, Arli blends experimental breaks and electronic styles to create soundscapes that capture all facets of her artistic identity.
Mentor - Hannah Petter
Hannah works as UK Promotions manager at Warp Records. Hannah’s main role is to oversee radio and press promotion across the label's campaigns. For 30 years Warp Records has been a synonym for adventures in sound and vision, consistently furthering their position as one of the most creative independent record labels in the world. With a rich legacy and consistently groundbreaking vision of the future, Warp and its artists traverse mediums to explore new spaces. Aphex Twin, Brian Eno, Flying Lotus, Hudson Mohawke, Kelela and Squarepusher are just a few who represent the label.
Hailing from Kerala, India, Michael Diamond is now based in Oxford where he holds a music scholarship. His music lies in between the vast landscapes of jazz and electronic, championing a genre-bending sound which he prefers to avoid categorising. He brings a refreshed focus to the harmonic and melodic aspects of electronic music more so than is commonly found within the underground scene today. Amidst working on new material, Michael is currently preparing the release of his new concept album - a continuous composition spanning ethereal jazz-breaks, introspective 2-step, sax-driven power ambient and world-building, story-telling electronica. Supported by BBC Introducing,Ransom Note, Mixmag and now Future Bubblers, plans for his debut LP are well under way.
Mentor - Aaron L
Aaron Levitt is the co-founder of music site Stamp The Wax and the Extra Soul Perception label, while also helping run cultural marketing agency Heard.
Marysia Osu is a Polish-born harpist-beatmaker-producer. Classically trained on the harp she expands the possibilities of her instrument with electronics. Marysia’s musical journey began at 6 years old before moving to London 4 years later, where she is still based. Her sonic world presents a blend of classical, jazz, ambient, improvised and electronic music, or specifically in her words “harp, beats & dreams”. A member of Levitation Orchestra and a long term collaborator of spoken word artist MA.MOYO, she regularly performs with various artists/ensembles including Alabaster DePlume, Ghost In The Tapes, Plumm and Nadeem Din-Gabisi. She is currently working on her solo project and her collaboration with MA.MOYO, aiming to start releasing throughout this year.
Mentor - Commodo
An artist with minimal online presence, Commodo is one of an increasingly rare few who make waves through the strength of their music alone. He builds bass-focused beats with soul and substance that never perpetuate a formula, distancing himself from contemporaries with ingenious sampling and sound design influenced by his long-time affinity with the vibrancy of hiphop.
Based in Leeds, Pertrelli Purple is a multi dimensional artist-producer who describes his sound as "miscellaneous north” based on his accent and the cities he has frequented. His musical journey began at 10 years old when he learned to play guitar before later discovering Grime as a teenager. Those origins quickly transitioned into making more thought provoking Hip-Hop and exploring other genres as a DJ and producer. With support from community radio station’s; Reprezent Radio and Balamii, Pertrelli has since shifted his focus to his forthcoming project as he looks to cement his name as a well rounded multi-instrumentalist artist.
Mentor - Seb Smith
Starting out in artist management, for several years Seb looked after an array of artists signed to major and independent labels ranging from RCA, to BlackButter to PIAS.
In 2017 Seb went on to set the ‘The Collective’ a strand of Global modelling agency powerhouse ‘Elite Models’. A business strand that worked with and represented the most current and culturally relevant music artists and creatives on fashion based projects. ‘The Collective’ worked with artists such as J Hus, Skepta, Ama Lou, Gaika, Dev Hynes and Sevdeliza.
In 2018 with ‘The Collective’ fully operating, Seb went and A&R consulted at the then newly established subsidiary label of Virgin/EMI, ‘Lost Ones’ working across projects such as A&R’ing projects such as Juls, Duchess, Collard and Wauve. Seb moved to French founded Distributor/Artist & Label Service Company ‘Believe Digital’ in 2020 as a Senior A&R role, where he A&R’s Chart topping rapper Knucks, Sainte, Nia Archives, Venna, Yazmin Lacey and more.