Future Stars: Billie Marten (Chess Club/RCA)

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

There’s a new 16-year-old female singer called Billie. When this last happened, in 1998, it was the start of a brief but brilliant pop career. Sadly, the chance that the 2015 Billie will release anything as poptastic as Because We Want To or Day and Night is slim-to-none. She probably won’t be getting any number one singles either (unless she’s picked for a future John Lewis ad), but she could fare better in the album chart. I suspect Billie Marten will be compared frequently to Birdy, especially as her new single is called Bird, though the smoking scene in the video suggests she’d like to be considered a bit more “edgy.” In fact, if any teen artist was a precursor, perhaps it would be Laura Marling. Billie’s voice is very pleasant and soothing, matched by her serene, blonde looks and folky singer-songwriter sounds. If she added a hint of youthfulness and personality, like in Laura’s early singles, I could get on board. The girl in this photo needs to shine through.


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