Future Stars: ​​B Young (Columbia)

Taken from this week’s Future Pop mailer. Click here to subscribe.

As the grime scene has charged onto the singles chart over the past year, each of the major labels has taken their pick of the GRM Daily regulars in the hope of jumping on the bandwagon. These artists had always been “doing numbers” (a lot more than the white, middle class artists A&Rs have spent the past few years fighting over… *side eye*) but it’s only since Stormzy became a mainstream star and chart-topper that the major labels have recognised the genre’s money-making potential. Polydor’s got Ramz, Virgin’s got Hardy Caprio, and Columbia’s got EO and B Young, who I’m focusing on today. Unlike those other three and despite his Afro-swing sound, B Young – born Bertan Jafer – isn’t black, but instead has a British Cypriot background (i.e. he looks a bit like Kem from Love Island). The 23-year-old former sound engineer from Hackney was releasing tracks via his own company Game Time before he was picked up by Columbia. His first major label single Jumanji was a slow-burning hit, spending six weeks in the top 20 earlier this year, peaking at no.13. The follow-up 079 Me popped up at the top of Spotify’s New Music Friday a few weeks ago. The track has a summery sound and video filmed in Ibiza, so it stands a good chance of becoming a hit in this hot weather.

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