Industry news & advice blog

Spotlight artists hit dazzling new heights

As has become a bit of a new year tradition for us now, we’re here with another blog celebrating the stand-out tales and achievements of some of the bands and artists we’ve featured on our Spotlight blog over the previous year. 2015 was a real gem, unearthing some spectacular talent and bonafide ones to watch, so let’s dive in and see where a selection of our Spotlight triumphs are now. Find out how you can submit your track for potential feature in our Spotlight blog too!



STEVE

Manchester bleep maker extraordinaire STEVE a.k.a. Jane Parker has had a pretty incredible 2015 since single ‘Emergency Art Rate’ was let loose…where do we begin? The song was the winning track on Steve Lamacq’s Round Table on BBC 6Music in November and has also been played by Annie Mac and Huw Stephens on BBC Radio 1, Steve Lamacq, Georgie Rogers, Lauren Laverne, Nemone and Chris Hawkins on BBC 6 Music, not to mention John Kennedy on Radio X who has also tipped STEVE as one of his ‘Ones To Watch In 2016’. 

The gig-front was also very active for STEVE who supported Big Scary on their 2 London dates, supported Vangoffey (Danny from Supergrass) at Camden Barfly, played a Radio X live session for John Kennedy’s X-Posure ‘One Night Stand’, and to top it all, toured Europe with Bloc Party during December. 

Presently writing a new EP and limbering up for some more gigs in the summer, we have an inkling 2016 holds more adventures and musical highlights for STEVE. Listen back to STEVE’s 60 Second CV aired on Steve Lamacq’s 6Music Recommends here.


Schnarff Schnarff
In their own words, “2015 was a big year for us”, and we couldn’t agree more. Since we championed the Glasgow band and their amazing song ‘DESK’ in our May 2015 blog, they’ve headlined T In The Park’s T Break stage, plus played XPONorth showcase, Brew At The Bog , Belladrum festival, Dr Martens/DIY's Stand For Something Tour, as well as many other gigs. 

Schnarff Schnarff have also received a lot of love from radio, being played on BBC Radio Scotland, BBC Radio 1, Amazing Radio, as well as a Number 1 spot on Netherland's radio station IndieXL #free40.  In fact, only last week we heard Steve Lamacq giving their latest single ‘This Is How We Get Some’ a spin too!



2016 is looking even brighter for Schnarff Schnarff; listen out for their BBC Introducing live session on the Vic Galloway Show on BBC Radio Scotland on 1st February. They’ll also be hitting the road and touring across England & Scotland from early March, as well as recording a debut album for summer release, just in time for another busy festival season. Could 2016 be the year of the Schnarff? We reckon so! 


Basheba
We were instantly smitten with Basheba’s blend of soul, gospel, breakbeat and drum & bass when we heard track ‘High ‘n’ Dry’ last year and since being included in our Spotlight selection, Basheba has enjoyed a very busy 2015.

Shortly after our blog, the single was picked up by Sky Sports and featured on their coverage, and it was also named BBC Introducing Track Of The Week on BBC 1Xtra. Revelling in plenty of blog coverage and liver performances, some stand-out shows include Sofar Sounds and also Music Fashion Hair in Barbados.

Currently working on her 3 part EP, Basheba will be supporting Etta Bond on 4th March at Nell’s Jazz & Blues in London. 
 

Monarks
Brandishing a larger than life rock attitude, we knew Monarks were on course to bigger things. Although 2015 wasn’t as packed with festival dates and tours as the Somerset based band had hoped, they’ve certainly made strides behind the scenes and will have everything in place to annihilate the festival circuit in due course.



Since their Spotlight feature in April 2015, they’ve built a strong team around them, comprising management, PR, plus signing with booking agency XRay Touring. The chaps had their first BBC Radio 1 airplay for single ‘The End’, received rave reviews for their first EP release from the likes of Kerrang!, and played a couple of sold out gigs with The Virginmarys. They rounded off the year in style with their track featured on a video by NME. 

2016 sees the band chomping at the bit to unleash their new material. Catch them live at O2 Academy Islington on 14th February alongside More Dangerous Animal.
 

Matt Grocott & The Shrives
This pop punk four-piece have had a great response off the back of their single ‘Turn Me On’ which was produced by Green Day’s Billie Joe Armstrong. Since Spotlight, they released the song as a single with accompanying video. The band were playlisted on Amazing Radio for a week, were interviewed by Dean Jackson from BBC Introducing Nottingham, had airplay on French radio station OUI FM, and even scored a pretty flattering write-up in NME.

Tonight Matt Grocott & The Shrives will be showing their support for Independent Venue Week by playing at The Lincoln Imp. Keep an eye for more gigs dates on the 2016 horizon. 


How can I be featured in the Spotlight blog?
Our Spotlight blog is compiled every month from fresh new music submitted to us by our members. We want to hear from you! We select 5 of the best tracks from our members, so if you want to be in the running you’ll need to sign up to The Unsigned Guide then follow the instructions in your Welcome email to submit a track for Spotlight consideration to us. If you’re already a member and still not sure about how to submit your music for Spotlight, just give us a shout via our Contact page & we’ll help you out!

As well as being featured in our new music blog, your track will also be forwarded onto  these music industry professionals including folks from Amazing Radio, Big Life Management, Club Fandango, Domino Records, The Fly, Memphis Industries, Rocksound, Skint Publishing, Sony Music, Spotify, Fake DIY, Transgressive Records and The Great Escape. View the full list of who listens to our Spotlight tracks here.

 

Did we mention we have a number of online radio stations that will air our Spotlight tracks too. Members of The Unsigned Guide get access to our huge directory of over 8,700 UK music industry contacts. Find out more about the directory and the other services we provide to help emerging bands and artists here: 

 

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