NextGen Fund Round Six Recipients
Announcing the recipients of the sixth round of the Youth Music NextGen Fund: 35 young creatives making their ideas happen with a grant of up to £2,500.
The Youth Music NextGen Fund has been made possible thanks to our principal partners TikTok and players of People’s Postcode Lottery, and support from Dr. Marten's Foundation.
Connor Williams, AKA 333 Presents, is a promoter from Caerphilly, South Wales, specialising in genres such as Punk, Queer Punk and Alternative Rock. Connor's NextGen Fund project, 333 Presents - Diwylliant, will showcase Welsh music in three separate venues spread across three days in the heart of Cardiff.
Recently titled BBC Radio Scotland Young Musician of the Year 2023, Amy Laurenson is a pianist from the Shetland Isles, currently based in Glasgow. Rooted in the traditional music of Shetland, Amy explores the music of her homeland alongside traditional and folk music from Scotland, Ireland and Scandinavia. Amy plans to use her NextGen Fund grant on her debut album.
Angel of Origin
Angel of Origin (AKA Gabriel McKenna) pursues visual and audio production, combining the two in thought-provoking ways. His work aims to encourage people to think critically whilst welcoming the importance of fully embracing our emotions - good, bad and everything in between. His NextGen Fund project is called 'Angel of Origin - Origins', a multi-sensory exploration of life, delving into his own experiences of both the joys and challenges we all face.
Originally born in Lagos, Nigeria, Archy Moor now lives in Milton Keynes, creating music and holding down a 9-5 job. Frequently collaborating with local and International talent, expanding his horizons and beginning the unknown is what Archy strives for. His NextGen Fund grant will help to create this third EP.
London-born artist and producer BINA. first came onto the scene in 2019 with her debut EP 'Humble Abode'. Over the past 4 years, she continues to prove herself independently as a skilled storyteller , her tone has been described as "iridescent" and "ataractic" in publications over the past two years.
Cat Rose is an emerging musician, theatre maker, writer, and arts practitioner in Plymouth. A solo artist and part of a duo, Cat is very passionate about music and will throw herself at any challenge. Cat's grant will fund her 'Waste Land' EP.
Cralla is a rapper and songwriter who uses his life experience and socials issues as my inspiration for his authentic work. Cralla plans to use his Youth Music NextGen Fund grant to make his EP, 'Royal Infirmary', a collection of his experience of hospital following a serious crash. Writing the EP provided Crala with an outlet for expression during the difficult time.
East of England
Damsel Elysium is a sound and visual artist, composer, performance artist and multi-instrumentalist. Their work explores anticolonial and neurodivergent practice, unity with nature and the mechanics of the manmade world. They write songs and create visceral soundscapes with double-bass, violin, piano and voice along with vivid visual that empowers the work.
Their Youth Music NextGen Fund debut EP 'Whispers from Ancient Vessels' is a collection of tales, speakings and relationships with nature's beings such as trees, the sea and the inner self.
DFlexXx is a rising star in the UK rap scene, with a talent for blending Hip-Hop and Trap music seamlessly. His influences include artists such as Chris Brown, Drake, Tyga, Kanye West, and Stormzy, as well as the music he grew up with in the 90s. DFlexXx will use his grant to promote his 'Prince of Wales' EP, which aims to support the community, with 25% of proceeds donated to the Prince's Trust to empower young creatives.
Dulzo The Great
Dulzo is a Zimbabwe-born and Malawi heritage rapper from Leicester. He became solo artist near the end of 2018 and hopes to motivate and inspire others to not fear to take the risk of following their dreams. He will make six R&B songs as an introduction to his artistry using his NextGen Fund grant.
Freya is a neo-soul singer-songwriter based in London. She collaborates with musicians from diverse genres, including Drum and Bass, Jungle, Jazz, and Hip-Hop. Her debut single "Land Back On Earth" was featured on the Spotify playlist Nightcap. Freya will be using the Youth Music NextGen Fund to create her 'Comfort in Discomfort' EP, a soul-stirring 5-song EP depicting the metamorphosis of a butterfly.
Hulton is a bilingual hip-hop musician who recently represented his home city of Brighton in BBC 1Xtra's tour 'Homegrown'. The name Hulton is a tribute to his late mother.
Hulton's grant will help him to produce and release three singles, each a bilingual fusion of Colombian and English hip-hop and pop talking about love, sustainability, and dream chasing. Various elements of the projects will be focused on promoting sustainability / political awareness through representation and collaboration.
IMVN is a vocalist, violinist and producer from London. Her genreless approach to creating is forward-looking and futuristic. Drawing from the rich tapestry of the ambient music genre, her sound is both a homage to and continuation of its history. IMVN will put her NextGen Fund grant towards the creation, artwork and release of a dual single.
James Jones is a jazz-infused multi-instrumentalist and singer from Caerphilly playing jazz violin solos, flamenco guitar and ukulele to create unique songs. Starting his career as a pop violinist, James played his first ever show to an audience of 5,000 at Cardiff International Arena supporting ABBA The Show. He began singing last year. James' NextGen Fund album will feature a fusion of the sounds his is known for.
Yorkshire and the Humber
Jemma Freese is a keyboardist andvocalist involved with J Frisco (punk jazz electronic), Maximo Park (indie/art-rock), j2oh (drum and bass jazz) and her own solo project (trap/rap/jazz and contemporary jazz math). She has received places on Jazz North Northernline and Serious Take Five.
Jemma's new solo album supported by the Youth Music NextGen Fund will feature ethereal math-jazz, strings and spoken word, exploring invisible illnesses, drawing from her own experiences of chronic pain, autism and complex PTSD.
Yorkshire and the Humber
KG is a rapper, youth worker, actor and poet from Bradford. Writing for nine years, performing for four and teaching and mentoring for three, their NextGen Fund supported six-track EP, 'By Any Means', depicts a journey of struggle and hope.
Koba Sno is an experimental musical artist and producer blending their maximalist sound with their love for movement and dance. Sno creates a maximalist world both nostalgic and future facing. Referencing 2000s video games and cult movie soundtracks; their output is addictively dynamic and unpredictable. With their debut mixtape, Sno will develop their skills in choreography and directing by creating a half 3D-animated, half choreo-based teaser video and live show.
East of England
An old soul with young energy defines LDEEA, a singer, and songwriter who writes songs that contain wisdom with a breath of fresh air. Curating a sound that is a fusion of 'Ambient Soul', she hopes her music is a comfort blanket or a lightbulb moment for whoever listens.
LDEEA's 'The REGROWTH Project' is a concept EP that emphasises the importance of self-belief, hope, and living, not existing. Supported by the NextGen Fund, it will be accompanied by a social media series featuring jams, interviews, and a podcast; taking people on a journey and connects with them on an interpersonal level about what 'REGROWTH' means to them.
Lucy DK seeks beauty in the search for healing, her music a fusion of sleek, alternative R&B-pop. Starting from humble Leicestershire beginnings, she spent her teenage years writing songs on her bedroom floor. The thread through her artistry is the polished yet vulnerable storytelling for which she's become known. Her Youth Music NextGen Fund grant will be used to create an EP.
Lydia Lutudi is a singer-songwriter and band leader fusing 70s inspired rock, funk and soul to create a unique, electrifying music that reflects millennial social issues. Last year, Lydia self-released her debut single to make the step-change in her career from professional cover singer to an artist with original music.
'Psychedelic Millennial' will be a six-track EP showcasing Lydia's growth musically, lyrically and stylistically, and aims to push the boundaries for Black millennial women in music.
Marisam Events is a female-led live events company aiming to re-define the North East creative industries by showcasing local talent. The grant will be put towards a new in-person event series, Late 'n' Live, the North East's first and only live music quiz, featuring a live band comprised of local musicians who play every single question. It will be a unique night of entertainment and fun to challenge audience's musical knowledge.
Martha Pryer is a singer and songwriter based in Manchester who blends together a mixture of jazz, electronic and soulful tones to create twists on pop music today. Her lyrics draw on personal experiences of the world, each song a way of expressing, reflecting and translating that moment or feeling into music. Martha is planning to put her NextGen Fund grant towards an EP that shares the journey of her coming out.
Matty Lusher is an up-and-coming music video director in Aberdeen. Since joining the scene in 2021, Matty has made a pretty big impact on helping the Aberdeen rap scene grow. He plans to use his NextGen Fund to provide three free music videos to support three emerging local artists and help to grow their career.
MRWIZE, aka Harold Kuenyefu, is a South London-born electronic music artist and producer. Having a uniquely dystopian sound, MRWIZE creates boundary-pushing music, transcending the ordinary. All his work is self-recorded and produced, and all his visual work is self-directed.
MRWIZE's two-sided ambient, full length music project will showcase two distinct styles: one ethereal and atmospheric, the other offering an in-depth story. The NextGen Fund supported project will depict MRWIZE's musical journey and take listeners to all sides of himself over the last few years.
Niall McDowell is a queer folk and alt-country singer/songwriter from Belfast, Country Antrim. Their music has been described as "somewhere between a choirboy and a cowboy" by BBC Radio 1, with songs such as 'Brokeback' and 'It Was An Honour To Be Nominated' lauded for whip-smart writing and vulnerable production.
In the early stages of recording his debut album, Niall's NextGen Fund project will see the recording and release of two songs.
Okeam Briscoe, a Birmingham-born singer/songwriter, creates R&B and Soul music, drawing inspiration from legends like Marvin Gaye and Lauryn Hill. He wows audiences with his smooth voice and exceptional instrument manipulation. Okeam appeared on Jason Derulo's BBC Three show, 'Project Icon', and has performed at KOKO London. He aims to inspire men with mental health challenges with his 'BOYSCRYTOO.' EP project.
RENOK9000 is a DJ and producer from North Shields who runs a record label and club night series called STEREO45 based in Newcastle. He has been a notable and contributing member of Newcastle's electronic music scene for a number of years, establishing a name for himself through his STEREO45 brand.
Using his NextGen Fund grant, RENOK9000 will launch the first series of physical format (vinyl) music for his STEREO45 record label, focusing on showcasing music by artists from underrepresented social groups in the Newcastle area.
RIYA writes and produces all her own music, receiving support from Rolling Stone and BBC (Introducing artist). She has performed live for XOYO, MacronStadium, Troxy, BarbicanTheatre, TateMuseum, OxfordUnion, Manchester Museum and The O2 Academy2 London. RIYA has also completed an artist residency with SAGE GATESHEAD, and secured festival slots with ‘SFTOC’, ‘First Street’, & MIF. RIYA will create three singles for her EP 'Lessons' with her NextGen Fund.
Robyn Saunders is a Manchester based clarinettist who specialises in contemporary classical music, musical theatre and drag artistry. They plan to host a one night only off-West End performance on the struggle of childhood isolation, violence and addiction while remembering queer history and celebrating what it is to be wonderfully unique.
Somatic is a dual-heritage sound artist, his creative practice encompasses sound for theatre, dance, screen, club dancefloors and DJing. Rooted in sound systems and dance music culture, his influences from the rural landscape and the myriad of genres from around the world he was surrounded by from an early age.
Somatic plans to collaborate and release music with three visual-led artists to create visual identities for his NextGen Fund tracks.
Straight out of South London, TSTIZZ is on a mission to bring Grime to the forefront of British culture. A recognisable face from the Spit Game, his jumpy hooks and hilarious antics regularly go viral on TikTok. TSTIZZ's fast-paced flows, comedic wordplay and exuberant stagecraft brings early Grime right up to date.
TSTIZZ plans to make his first EP, which will see him collaborate with as many artists and producers as possible, bringing a new mix of Grime and modern music together to elevate the underground sound of his community.
Viv Latifa is a singer songwriter, performer and recording artist from Italy who is now based in Edinburgh. With her NextGen Fund, Viv will write and record four tracks for her upcoming album and create one music video that breaks boundaries, highlighting the beauty of diversity and confidence with a motivational message. It will be based on the upbeat and downbeat of old school R&B with Afrobeat fusion.
Xaira is a multidisciplinary artist who experiments with soundscapes of Neo-Soul, Blues, Garage, Alternative R&B, and Psychedelic Rock. Their NextGen Fund EP, 'Heartbreak Melodies 007' will explores the various aspects of their self-actualisation and the tensions with the various forms of love (and hatred) in their relationship with themselves, and unhealthy relationships with coping mechanisms; food, drugs, escapism and the validation of others.
yeguachita is a queer and neurodivergent Latin American singer, songwriter, and producer. They make music of all kinds ranging from Hip-Hop and Cumbia to Vaporwave to Psychedelia. Their work tends to be both intimate and political and reflects their own unique life experiences.
Their NextGen Fund mixtape '[ BLESSINGS ]' will explore the more experimental side of their work, with a retrofuturistic/cyberpunk dystopia concept that explores the shortcomings of capitalism and colonialism and how it leaves people traumatised and isolated.
East of England
After making a name for himself in the North of England, Yusuf Yellow is now breaking into the London scene with a vision to unite the world through music. Yusuf variates between sets with his DJ and live band, showing listeners a sound that blends Hip-Hop, Punk, Jazz and spoken word poetry.
Their NextGen Fund 'Prelude to a New Dream' EP will explore themes of love, faith, mental health and self development over a Jazz and Soul influenced soundscape.