The Featured Artists Coalition announces 20 new Ambassadors including Beabadoobee, Portishead’s Adrian Utley, Carl Cox, Maya Jane Coles & Steve Mason16 March 2023 - Press release
The Featured Artists Coalition (FAC), the UK’s artist trade body, unveils a huge announcement of new Artist Ambassadors. Coming from a broad range of genres and diverse backgrounds, the new ambassadors join the FAC, helping to grow the organisation’s community and amplify its message of fair representation for artists.
Recent areas of focus for the FAC include the 100% Venues and #LetTheMusicMove campaigns against, respectively, excessive merchandise commissions and proposals to massively increase the cost of US touring visas, as well as a leading role in industry-wide discussions to reform and recalibrate the economics of streaming.
With more than 4.6 billion global streams and amidst huge critical acclaim, we welcome Filipino-born British singer-songwriter, beabadoobee. Bea has skyrocketed in recent years, from viral hits on TikTok to performances at Coachella and Glastonbury. Following her exploration of 90s inspired lo-fi sounds, she continues to experiment, taking inspiration from folk, bossa nova, and hip-hop on latest album, Beatopia. In November 2022, Bea was named Breakthrough Artist at the Artist & Manager Awards. Joining Bea, Adrian Utley of iconic UK outfit Portishead is up next on our list of new ambassadors. A central figure in one of the UK’s most seminal bands, 2023 will see Adrian take to the road performing the “Arcadia” soundtrack, which was composed with collaborator Will Gregory in 2017. Recently, Adrian has delivered his band, Sorry’s second studio album for Domino and co-produced Ladan for Mute, and he continues to work on new solo albums. Steve Mason also lends his support to the FAC’s mission. Having recently released an impressive fifth solo album, Brothers & Sisters, whether solo or with The Beta Band, Steve has repeatedly proven himself to be an astute, creative and tireless artist and a passionate activist.
Next up, a trio of DJs including multi award winning producer, Maya Jane Coles, whose career has seen her headlining in over 40 countries, shattering ceilings for women, Asian and LGBTQ+ artists along the way. She is in good company with Mr Scruff who’s been DJing since 1984, Mr Scruff brings his extensive creative talents as an artist, producer, cartoonist, and cross-genre selector. Then there’s one of the most charming and recognisable DJs on the planet, veteran of acid house, champion of techno, electronic pioneer and label owner, Carl Cox. With an immense catalogue under his belt and a new album released in late 2022, Carl continues to be one of the world’s most in demand performers on the scene, underpinned by his tireless work ethic. He received long overdue recognition as a Pioneer at the 2022 Artist & Manager Awards.
Another electronic trailblazer, DJ Laura Jones alongside Scottish, experimental, folk artist Constant Follower join the FAC as dual ambassadors along with our friends from Attitude Is Everything, representing the NEXT STAGE initiative, fighting for greater accessibility and inclusivity across the industry. One of dance music's most inspirational talents, following a diagnosis of a rare form of blindness Laura continues to push forward as a globally renowned DJ. Constant Follower aka Stephen McAll experienced a catastrophic unprovoked attack which resulted in severe injuries. He has learnt to live with the disability that resulted and created triumph after tragedy in his acclaimed debut album ‘Neither Is, Nor Ever Was’.
In a similar realm of folk influenced, experimental sounds and also hailing from Scotland, Edinburgh'sHamish Hawk also joins the team. His chamber pop songs are full of lyrical wit, seamlessly blending his multi-genre influences seamlessly. Hamish recorded his latest material with long-time producer and collaborator Rod Jones who also steps up to the plate. Perhaps best known as a founding member of Idlewild, whose illustrious career spans 27 years with numerous UK top 40 albums and singles, Rod also founded the Fruit Tree Foundation, a mental health music awareness organisation, alongside Emma Pollock.
From Scotland down to Liverpool we see ANDRO join us. Previously a member of the Mercury Prize nominated JUNGLE and now shaking up the industry as a solo artist, the Liverpool born, singer, songwriter and actor is quickly cementing himself as a powerhouse vocalist and an equally talented lyricist. Nearby Wirral-based singer-songwriter, Louisa Roach of She Drew The Gun is another addition to the FAC Ambassador army. Louisa has spent the last seven years cementing her reputation as a vital voice in the alternative scene, using punk-infused psych-pop as a vehicle for exposing injustice and to advocate for a fairer and more tolerant society.
More punk from the heart of London’s DIY scene, Big Joanie (guitarist Stephanie Phillips, bassist Estella Adeyeri, and drummer Chardine Taylor-Stone), the Black feminist band combine the fury of riot grrrl with their synth-heavy sounds. Belfast band New Pagans also bring a post-punk influence, combined with their alternative, indie rock stylings and using their creative influence for activism to challenge past and present issues surrounding relationships, equality, history and gender, and to fight for a fairer industry for all. Russell Marsden of Band of Skulls brings more indie rock to our announcement. Since 2009 Russell has released six studio albums and toured internationally, recently branching out into production and songwriting while also working on a new solo record following his debut “Marsden and Richardson” album.
Back in the capital, charismatic South London rapper Keedz is turning heads with her razor-sharp wordplay and infectious energy. North of the river but remaining in rap we find, Lex Amor, from a background in presenting and radio, she’s pivoting into music making as an artist, engineer and sound designer, bringing technical expertise alongside her introspective and intelligent lyricism. Emmavie joins us next, best known for an unmistakably sultry signature R&B sound, the multi-talented singer, songwriter, producer and DJ has made a big imprint on the world of R&B.
From R&B to Jazz, dubbed the “UK’s Queen of Jazz-fusion”, Emily Saunders is also welcomed as a new Artist Ambassador. Emily’s compositions reflect on society, the fragility of people and the strength of connectivity: her music dives deep into the concepts around community and connection. Billie Marten, next on the list, takes a similarly voyeuristic approach to her writing in which she explores the struggles between modernity and tradition. This commentary is contextualised in her gentle and reserved folk-pop style.
beabadoobee, FAC Ambassador said:
"I’m honoured to take part as Ambassador to the FAC, they are a part of several great initiatives that support and recognise artists along their journeys! It’s great to be part of the community.”
David Martin, CEO, FAC said:
“In what remains a challenging time for the global artist community, I’m encouraged by the strength of support for the FAC’s work shown by our army of ambassadors.
The twenty artists announced today are testament to the creativity, diversity and talent that the UK has to offer. We are delighted to have their support as we continue our mission to advocate for artists’ interests, be that around merch commission, touring mobility or the economics of music streaming.”
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