Transforming pain into transcendence is the genius of many pop artists; Doe Paoro brings an entirely new depth to that process. On her third album, Soft Power, the Los Angeles–based singer-songwriter digs into her frustration and anguish, and ultimately comes away with a newfound strength that is profoundly inspiring.
“So much of the album is about reclaiming parts of myself that I had lost,” explains Doe, originally from Syracuse, New York. “It’s about being a woman, and what exactly that means at this particular moment in time; about witnessing a lack of justice when it comes to men and control. Both at the personal and societal levels, I was watching people in power play games with our lives, with the environment. I found this theme reappearing in the music I was writing during this period; it was less intentional and more about a certain kind of catharsis.”
Naming Carole King among her inspirations, Paoro notes that the more urgent feel of the new record comes partly from reconnecting with the instinctive approach of her earliest songwriting.
“One of my intentions was to drop any questions about what might be inventive, and just focus on writing songs that felt true to my experience,” she says.
Matt Sucich writes songs mostly with a pen and sings them always with his mouth. His last name is pronounced "Sue-sitch" and people often show how much they like his songs by comparing him to other popular artists. One time, Jim James came to a show. His LP, Thousand Dollar Dinners, is coming soon.
Singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Caroline Jones coproduced her album Bare Feet with Grammy-winning and Academy Award–winning producer Ric Wake (Mariah Carey, Celine Dion, Whitney Houston, and Trisha Yearwood). Bare Feet rose to no. 20 on the country albums chart and no. 15 on the iTunes country albums chart. The album features the single “Tough Guys,” which spent six weeks at no. 1 on CMT.com’s 12-Pack Countdown.
Rolling Stone named Jones one of the “10 Country Artists You Need to Know,” calling her “an ambitious, entrepreneurial guitar heroine primed to bring back the pop-country glory of the Nineties.” Billboard called her one of the “15 Country Artists to Watch in 2018.” Throughout 2018, Jones has been touring with artists such as Jimmy Buffett, the Eagles, Zac Brown Band, Tim McGraw, and Faith Hill.
In 2017, she was on the road with Zac Brown Band and shared the stage with Jimmy Buffett, Kenny Chesney, and Toby Keith at the Trying to Reason hurricane relief benefit concert. A live duet with Buffett led to a charity single release and, ultimately, a partnership with his label, Mailboat Records. Jones previously toured schools and universities nationwide—including underserved and charter schools with Stedman Graham—on the Heart Is Smart School Tour. Jones is the host of Art & Soul on SiriusXM.
Watch Jones’s music video for “Tough Guys”:
Choir! Choir! Choir! is a Toronto-based singing group led by creative directors Nobu Adilman and Daveed Goldman. The duo takes a non-traditional approach: there are no auditions, and the audience is the choir. Just show up and they'll teach you an original arrangement to a song you love. Founded in 2011, Choir! Choir! Choir! has amassed a dedicated and passionate community of singers and a thriving international fan base on YouTube. The group has performed with renowned artists such as Patti Smith, Tegan and Sara, David Byrne, Rick Astley, and Rufus Wainwright. They have also performed at New York’s Carnegie Hall and Radio City Music Hall with the likes of Debbie Harry and the Flaming Lips. Choir! Choir! Choir! exists to celebrate music and push the boundaries between practice and performance, artist and audience, offering therapeutic benefits with the ultimate side effect: a powerful community.
The Nude Party congealed as one unit in the southern mountain town of Boone, NC in 2013 and gained their namesake very literally. Bonded by isolation, house party debauchery, a religion based on pushing the limits of bad taste, and a precocious predisposition towards the Kinks, the Animals, and the Velvets, they have burgeoned into a rock and roll act to be reckoned with. As the hysteria at their local shows steadily increases, so does their reputation with local law enforcement, forcing them daily more to seek employment anywhere but home. The band has been occupying themselves with a string of self booked tours and one night stands, which have linked them up with with bands such as the Growlers, the Oblivians, La Luz, Night Beats, and King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard.
Mia Gladstone is a singer-songwriter and producer from South Orange, New Jersey. Her vibrant music communicates a fresh, eclectic, and modern sound while also paying homage to fundamental artists in the urban contemporary and hip-hop genres. With strong energy and a laid-back vibe, Gladstone's soul-searching music resonates with a counter-culture of both new and old, a wave bringing both nostalgia and presence of mind.
Tommy Newport is an 18 year old singer-songwriter and record producer. Born in Manchester, England, Newport relocated to the United States with his family when he was 6 years old. From there, he bounced around, living in Dallas and Seattle before finally settling down in Wichita, Kansas.
Tommy Newport puts all his skills on display on his debut album, Just To Be Ironic. Support for Newport has been strong since the start, with co-signs by BadBadNotGood, Giles Peterson, and Sticky Fingers. His music has also been in rotation on Best of the Week by Apple Music and it has been featured in HBO’s hit TV show, Ballers.
Newport independently released the album So Long And Thanks (under the name Milmine) in 2017, with absolutely no promotion or marketing. The project still received over 2 million streams across YouTube, Spotify, and Apple Music. The 13-track album is a personal diary from Newport and the album’s co-producer, Toronto based producer 4th Pyramid.
Tommy Newport has the heart and soul of a true musician. After the release of his first single “I Forgive You”, a funk soaked ballad that takes listeners deeper into Newport’s idyllic world, the buzz began to spread. Newport is moving forward in full force into 2019 with the announcement of his own headlining tour across North America.
The Brook & the Bluff is a four-man band from Birmingham, Alabama, that is currently based in Nashville. They are known for their evocative blend of instrumental talent and vocal harmony. These elements are readily apparent in the band's debut track, “Masks.” Having initially gained momentum through Spotify, the song has helped spur the band forward in their musical pursuits. The group's first year as a full band has been widely successful. They charted on Spotify's US and Canada Viral 50 Playlists, performed at the NAMM shows in both Nashville and Anaheim, and sold out shows in Atlanta, Birmingham, Huntsville, Nashville, and Opelika.
Andy McKee is among the world’s finest acoustic guitarists. With youthful energy and an attention to song structure and melodic content, he transforms the steel string guitar into a full orchestra with the use of altered tunings, tapping, partial capos, percussive hits, and a signature two-handed technique.
McKee’s crossover success has helped him achieve millions of YouTube viewers, underscoring his emergence as one of today’s most unique and influential artists. He has been featured on the covers of Acoustic Guitar Magazine in the United States and Acoustic Magazine in the United Kingdom, and is the figurehead of the unique Guitar Masters tours. McKee has toured Europe, Asia, Australia, and North America, sometimes with acts such as Prince and Dream Theater.
Alice Phoebe Lou first traversed Europe in 2010, at the age of 16. Inspired by street artists, she began performing as a fire dancer before eventually turning to music. She relocated to Berlin in 2013 and began to develop a devoted following of fans, supporters, and collaborators. She soon self-released her first EP, Momentum. By 2014, she was garnering international attention, and both that year and the following, she performed at TED events in Berlin and London, respectively, as well as Exponential Medicine.
2016 brought about the release of Lou’s first full length studio album, Orbit. The album was comprised of nine jazz-influenced, eclectic tracks recorded between Cape Town and Berlin that encapsulate the freshness of her live style, vagabond spirit, and distinctive soprano voice. She was then nominated for Best Female Artist at the 2016 German Critics Choice Awards and performed at the 27th Annual Conference for the Professional Businesswomen of California, sharing the stage with keynote speakers Venus Williams, Judy Smith, and Memory Banda. She spent much of that year on the road, touring with artists such as Sixto Rodriguez, Boy & Bear, Allen Stone, and Crystal Fighters. She also put on several multimedia events at the Berlin Planetarium, the biggest in Europe. The shows were a spectacular symbiosis of live sound and amazing visuals which Lou worked on hand in hand with the director of the planetarium, Tim Florian Horn. Between 2016 and 2017, she put on a total of eight sold out shows at the planetarium.
In December of 2017, Lou independently released an EP titled Sola. That same year, a live version of the song “She” was released and racked up over two million plays on YouTube. In addition, it was selected to be featured in the film Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story, which was executive produced by Susan Sarandon. The studio version of “She” was released in February of 2018, premiering on NPR’s All Songs Considered. After several performances at SXSW, Lou headed west to California to record her forthcoming album, Paper Castles, to be released on March 8th, 2019. In support of the album, she will embark on a world tour, including her first headlining run in North America.
Lily and Madeleine Jurkiewicz create candid music with deep emotional and personal resonance. The sisters, who record under the moniker Lily & Madeleine, boldly explore what it means to be women in the 21st century, and aren't afraid to use their music to call out injustices or double standards. This fearless approach has permeated their first three albums, which are full of insightful lyrics and thoughtful indie-pop. On their fourth studio album, Canterbury Girls—named after Canterbury Park, located in their hometown of Indianapolis, Indiana—the sisters are coming into their own as women and musicians. That assertiveness reflects new geographic and professional realities. For starters, Lily and Madeleine—who are now 21 and 23 respectively—moved to New York City in early 2018. Also, instead of recording Canterbury Girls in Bloomington, Indiana, which is where they recorded their previous efforts, the pair headed to Nashville to write and work with producers Daniel Tashian and Ian Fitchuk.
In the last few years, Lily & Madeleine have amassed a supportive global community of fans and peers. They've toured as a headlining act, opened for everyone from Dawes to Rodriguez, and in summer 2017, were invited to be backup singers on John Mellencamp's Sad Clowns and Hillbillies Tour, on which they harmonized on hits such as "Cherry Bomb" and performed Carter Family songs with opener Carlene Carter. Unsurprisingly, diving right into making Canterbury Girls also helped the sisters learn a lot about themselves. With this growing self-confidence and musical poise, it's clear that Lily & Madeleine are positioned for even greater things going forward.
Brother Bird is the Nashville-based solo project of Caroline Swon. She embraces an intimate, ethereal style of indie rock with her first single, “Leave It Alone”. With the help of her friends at Favorite Gentlemen Recordings, she plans to announce the release of her self-titled EP very soon.
J.S. Ondara is an artist based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He was born and raised in Nairobi but moved to Minneapolis simply because that's where Bob Dylan is from. He cites his influences as Bob Dylan, Neil Young, Noah Gundersen, Ray Lamontagne, and Bon Iver. Ondara is currently finishing up his first project and playing a few select shows.
Singer-songwriter and producer Sid Sriram represents a collision point of radically different worlds. He graduated from Berklee College of Music with a degree in Music Production and Engineering. It was at Berklee, studying production, where he started exploring and building his own sound. Sid Sriram's music creates a bold cross section where pop, soul, his Indian classical roots, and alternative/ambient music clash vibrantly.
Sriram was raised on a dynamic, rich foundation of South Indian classical (carnatic) music, a style of music that would become his creative framework and anchor. He grew up soaking in the music of legendary artists such as Stevie Wonder, Donny Hathaway, Jeff Buckley, the Beatles, and Luther Vandross. These influences have defined his artistic evolution. With his work in Indian cinema soundtrack music resonating with millions, Sid Sriram has developed an exponentially growing, die hard fanbase. His live productions are exhilarating, engaging and vulnerable; thousands pack out venues to experience his emotionally immersive shows. With his daringly unique debut LP, Entropy, releasing later this year, Sid Sriram looks to make a strong impact the world.
Singer-songwriter, indie Folk, acoustic pop – these are all labels that could apply to Mark Wilkinson, but ultimately he lends his voice to the human condition. His music has risen up the charts on two continents amd his shows have sold out in several different countries. He's shared arena stages with some of music's most enigmatic names like Brian Wilson and Rodriguez, but he can still be found performing on the street, forging connections through song without barrier or contrivance. Some of these organic moments of connection have actually led to breakthroughs for Wilkinson as an independent artist: while busking in Amsterdam, a late-night television producer approached him and asked him to appear on the show that evening. After the segment aired, his music hit the charts in the Netherlands and he began trending on social media. An advertising executive saw him busking in Sydney and placed his song "Middle Ground" in a Nescafé ad campaign that sent it to the top of the iTunes singer-songwriter charts in Australia.
In 2013, Wilkinson took the leap to North America, selling out his first-ever show in New York and hitting the airwaves across the U.S. and Canada on SiriusXM's Coffee House station, where he was named "Discovery of the Year" alongside breakout artists like Chvrches and Bastille. His 2015 acoustic hit "Everything To Me" is still in rotation, and he continues to sell out shows across the continent, playing legendary venues like the Bluebird Café in Nashville, Eddie's Attic in Decatur, and more. Now, with three full length albums under his belt, 2019 sees Wilkinson return to the live stage in support of his fourth record, Blue Eyed Girls. Set for release in March 2019, this new collection of songs comes hot on the tail of Wasted Hours, which hit #1 on the Australian independent album charts in early 2018.