We’re two months (actually, three) into a new year and many of us have already broken our New Year’s resolutions, fallen back into old habits, or conversely, made strides to bettering ourselves in 2016.
But with a new year comes new and exciting artists, designers, and other creatives to help push us along.
Here’s a list of five artists to watch for in 2016.
One of the five founding members of Diddy’s girl group Danity Kane — who found their voice on MTV’s Making The Band — and a member of the short-lived Diddy-Dirty Money, D∆WN has reinvented herself following the (re)dissolution of the then-quartet band.
Putting out the second installment of her album trilogy Blackheart early in 2015, the former dancer for the New Orleans Hornets has shed and assemblage her pop-leaning background. Pitchfork described her sound as “heaving, apocalyptic dance-pop, somewhere between Bjork and Brandy.” Towards the end of 2015, D∆WN was gearing up for Red*emp*tion (her upcoming album), by releasing the video for her current single “Dance.”
The second single from her upcoming album, “Not Above That,” is a perfect blend of the aesthetic of her first album, coupled with the emotive nature of her second. Having a uptempo dance number, the track serves as a fantastic first glimpse at what is to come. As she sets the stage for a takeover in 2016, Richard intends for this era to be a “vibrant atmosphere…about moving on, redeeming yourself, and finding redemption.”
Kode Magazine recently referred to Richard as the “new face of EDM,” and it seems that her new music will reflect this title. Reportedly more upbeat and dance friendly than her previous projects, it will be interesting to see how D∆WN intends on taking her artistry to another level.
One of the more promising creatives to come out of Houston, Tacharra Perry, is the creative director, designer, and driving force behind her clothing brand CHAR.
With her first New York Fashion Week show under her belt, CHAR is geared to carve out a lane of high end womenswear with both an urban flair and couture feel. With cosigns from celebrities and tastemakers like Crystal Westbrook and Jordyn Woods, CHAR is a very detailed, quality brand, consisting of unique fabrics that reinvent tried and true silhouettes.
Stay tuned for more from this promising creative as Tacharra and CHAR prepare to dominate the fashion world in 2016 and beyond.
Jazz is no freshman to Black Sheep, as one half of the hip hop duo Red Cup $quad, we featured their single “Real Love Story” last summer. As a stand alone artist, Jazz, the oldest daughter of reality television mogul and reality star Tami Roman and former NBA point guard Kenny Anderson, is preparing to have a successful 2016, with a new sound, fresh look, and focused vision.
— Jazz Anderson (@ItsJazzAnderson) January 29, 2016
Having kicked off the new year with a brand new single, “All I Want,” Jazz is perfectly poised to take the her place in the female rap game. “All I Want” is a syrupy, feel good single, which has already garnered cosigns from Love & Hip Hop regular/Bad Boy hitmaker Stevie J.
The young artist has already worked in several capacities with Houston natives like Travis $cott and Sauce Walka, it will be exciting to see how Jazz will embrace all of the successes that’s about to come her way, as the rapper/actress embarks a prosperous 2016.
There’s a lot of speculation about the identity behind the amazing music coming from the artist known as dvsn (pronounced “division”). Originally thought to be Paul Jefferies, better known as Nineteen85 (the producer behind many of Drake’s hits including “Hotline Bling,” “Truffle Butter,” and “Hold On, We’re Going Home,” that theory has been recanted after the realization that vocal tendencies of dvsn are vastly different from anything previously recorded by Jefferies or any of his frequent collaborators.
Despite the Partynextdoor/The Weeknd-ish name anonymity, dvsn debuted on OVO Sound radio late in 2015 with a song entitled “The Line,” a seven minute vocal track that builds gradually into a full formed choir.
Two other tracks, “Hallucinations” and “Too Deep” have garnered over 15K plays each, with the newer of the two, “Hallucinations” being a spacious ode to lost love. Far more than a playback of a long tested 90s sound, the track features kinetic production and breathy delivery, a haunting track sung by a nameless singer.
Hopefully, 2016 brings an identity to this talented vocalist.
Something like an overnight success, 16 year-old Kiiara seemed to pop up out of the Midwestern corn fields to create an international buzz. Months before her direct-to-Soundcloud singles provided the backing to several Apple Music commercials, Kiiara was a regular high school student with a part-time retail job.
After releasing her bedroom cut “Gold,” she began working with Felix Snow, frequent SZA collaborator and producer. A handful of singles later, Kiiara is geared and ready for the upcoming release of her yet-to-be-titled debut project.
Just recently, her single “Feels,” along with “Gold,” found their way onto iTunes solidifying her place on the scape of pop music. With a very relatable girl-next-door feel, Kiiara is pop music’s newest wunderkind, with a unique sound of her own.