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The Youth Music NextGen Fund tackles big barriers for creatives

  • Round three of the Youth Music NextGen Fund is open for applications until 23 May
  • The fund will provide £80,000 to the next generation of young creatives to launch a project, idea or business 

Youth Music is responding to increasing competition and deepening inequalities across the creative industry, with round three of the Youth Music NextGen Fund. 

Urgent need for funding to increase access and equality

Accessing financial support continues to be a major barrier to creatives realising their ambitions in the music industry. Research from Youth Music during the pandemic revealed almost a third (31%) of young people say financial resources are the greatest barrier to pursuing and sustaining a career in music. 

Yet competition for funding shows no signs of slowing post-pandemic – with Youth Music reporting a 33% increase in funding applications in the last 12 months. 

The Youth Music NextGen Fund

The fund will provide early-stage musicians and music industry creatives aged 18-25 (and up to 30 years old for people identifying as Disabled) with up to £2,500 to launch a project, idea or business. The fund is especially aimed at people whose lack of finance holds them back from pursuing their goals. 

The Youth Music NextGen Fund has been made possible thanks to principal partners TikTok and players of People’s Postcode Lottery, and support from Turtle Bay. 

Unlocking opportunities for creatives

This comes as the organisation celebrates supporting 71 creatives to date – particularly those facing barriers because of who they are, where they’re from or what they’re going through. Those successful in round two included: 

  • 47% identifying as LGBTQIA+
  • 24% identifying as Disabled
  • 50% identifying as Black and/or another ethnic minority.
  • 72% based outside of London 

Recipients of the Youth Music NextGen Fund so far have released EPs, created music videos and developed marketing plans for their content. Including: 


EVA is an 18-year-old producer, singer and songwriter from Brighton. She is a self-taught musician who is currently building a repertoire of unreleased self-produced demos which range around the genres of EDM, R&B, Pop, House and even some pieces inspired by Country rhythms and Arabic scales. 

EVA’s music career has been developing from an early age. She has been performing for the last 10 years, producing from the age of 15 and is now ready to put out her own material.  

Using investment from the Youth Music NextGen Fund, EVA has created a music video for her new single, Reaching Out. 

Elle Chante 

Elle Chante is a singer and musical self-expressionist based in the Midlands. She began to develop her artistic practice as a means of processing personal trauma, and the ethos of music as therapy has remained integral to her work as it has matured.  

Elle Chante aims to make music that creates space for people to better understand each other and themselves. She is particularly interested in making work that explores issues of mental health, invisible illness and disability, with the intention of connecting with people who share her experiences, and communicating with people who don’t.

Becoming is Elle Chante’s self-produced EP, released in February thanks to funding from the Youth Music NextGen Fund. 

Elijah, Youth Music Associate, says: “Youth Music’s NextGen Fund continues to drive an important shift towards more equal, inclusive and innovative music industries. Over seventy young creatives we’ve invested in so far are demonstrating what can be achieved with a little financial support. Plus, they’re gaining experience in managing budgets, developing new skills, and building confidence in their work. We’re now looking to broaden the range of projects we fund with future rounds, so encourage anyone with innovative ideas to apply.”  

This new funding round follows the recent launch of the Youth Music Catalyser and Trailblazer Funds, reflecting the organisation’s commitment to equalising access for young people to make, learn and earn in music, whatever their background or goal.

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