Black musicians have been riding high recently. Rapper Kendrick Lamar's fourth album 'Damn.' wowed all of us and got critical acclaim. Reigning pop queen Rihanna didn't even release an album this year, but still managed to slay, with fan favourite 'Love On The Brain' reaching the number five spot six months after it was released - and without a video!
We know Kendrick and RiRi and our other faves are still going to blaze ahead, but here at Grass-fields we want to share with you some people who popped up this year and are set to slay in 2018.
Like many of the people you're going to see on this list, Khalid started from Soundcloud. The super talented 19-year-old started posting his music a few years ago, while still at high school. Early this year, he sold out his first tour, but things would get even better. His first album 'American Teen' went platinum in October and wowed critics. The kid who once dreamed of going to the Grammys got 5 nominations! His latest music video 'Saved' features gorgeous gal of the moment Duckie, one of our favourite melanin-rich models.
I want to go to the Grammys one day.— Khalid (@thegreatkhalid) January 27, 2014
She may have gone viral for throwing some hot soup on a subway racist, but there's more to Princess Nokia than street justice. The New York native and self-described 'Tomboy' exploded into the game in September, releasing her mix-tape '1992 Deluxe'. The Afro-Latina rapper often speaks up on feminist issues and is not afraid to speak her mind. Check out her single 'Tomboy'.
Trap beats and gritty streets is a way to sum up sultry songstress IAMDDB. With roots hailing from Angola and Portugal, the singer is from Manchester, UK and calls herself an 'urban jazz' singer. We expect her to blow up even more in 2018 as a mainstay of the UK scene. We love her song 'Shade', which you can listen to below. The visuals for the video are amazing!
Our next singer has bounced around A LOT. Born in Birmingham to Jamaican parents, then moving to Amsterdam, now London-based Stefflon Don is set for big things. She first came to more mainstream attention in 2016 on a feature with Jeremih. In 2017 she brought her formidable flow to 'Instruction' with Jaxx Jones and Demi Lovato, which hit the top 20 in the UK. She also joined French Montana on'Hurting Me'. What's next for her? She's apparently working with Drake! Listen to her classic 'Real Ting'.
Last but not at all least, is Lil Simz, a British rapper of Nigerian heritage from Islington, London. She's been on the scene for a while, even appearing on BBC Radio 1Xtra back in 2013 when she was just 19! Lil Simz released her first album, 'Stillness In Wonderland', at the tail end of 2016, and propelled into 2017. In 2017 she was opening act for the Gorrilaz 'Humanz' tour, and sings vocals for their song 'Garage Place'. Give it a listen!
I'd definitely add these talented guys to your playlists next year! Are there any musicians you think are going to slay it next year? Let us know in the comments below, it would be great to hear from you!