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Swedish female singers are perhaps the only artists loved equally by indie and pop blogs, and Amanda Mair has already found herself featured by Popjustice and Scandipop as well Largehearted Boy and The Line of Best Fit. She’s not yet well known in her home country, but the success of Swedish artists at home and abroad does not often correlate. Signed to Labrador, the Swedish label that houses a selection of indie artists whose fans somehow consistently mistake them for pop, Amanda Mair is certainly not the next Agnes or September. Her songs are pleasant but not life-changing, however Amanda herself is a beautiful 16 year old girl with a lovely voice. Paired with a great songwriter, her potential would be limitless – I just hope her label and the snobbier side of her fanbase don’t hold her back.
Punk is back! Well, maybe. It’s been a while since we last heard from Sum 41 and every 15 year old girl in the country has a pair of DMs these days, so it could be a good moment for an act like Zuzu to break through. Zuzu is currently unsigned but managed by Big Life (Scissor Sisters, La Roux). She makes punk-influenced music with well-constructed, catchy choruses. She’s a pretty girl and performs with panache, as shown in this YouTube video where she sings her best song Liverpool, an ode to her hometown, in the suitably punk location of a friend’s house party. Check out the studio version and a moodier but still melodic track called Don’t Do That (Breadcrumbs) on Soundcloud.
You may not have heard of her, but this 17-year-old singer/rapper already has over a million views on her YouTube channel. She’s part of an emerging scene of young black artists making innovative urban pop in their bedrooms and I expect she will soon follow fellow London teens like MNEK and A*M*E in signing a major record deal. Courtney’s currently working on a mixtape and I’ve noticed that Miranda Cooper of Xenomania, who rarely tweets, is following Courtney on Twitter. Could they be working together, I wonder? Historically not many British female rappers have done well in the charts, but with Courtney also being a talented singer and producer she could be the new generation’s Ms Dynamite.
Here are my predictions for the songs we’ll be hearing a lot of over the Christmas period. Could one of these even challenge the X Factor winner for the Christmas no.1 now that X Factor is losing viewers?
- One Direction – Gotta Be You
- James Morrison feat Jessie J – Up
- Justin Bieber – Under The Mistletoe
- Rebecca Ferguson – Nothing’s Real But Love
- Flo Rida – Good Feeling