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Joss Stone signs with ICM Partners worldwide

Joss Stone has signed with ICM Partners for worldwide representation. The signing expands Stone’s relationship with the agency, whose concerts division previously represented her in North and South America only.

The British soul singer-songwriter was formerly represented by Diplomats of Sound in her native UK.

Stone released her critically acclaimed debut album, The Soul Sessions, in 2003. Since then she has released seven studio albums which have sold over 15 million copies worldwide, and won a Grammy Award and two Brit Awards

She recently debuted her first solo single in three years, the gospel-tinged ‘Walk With Me’, and during the pandemic launched a successful podcast, A Cuppa Happy, and a weekly Facebook Live cooking show, Cooking with Joss.

Stone is set to release her eighth studio album this fall, produced by Eurythmics’ Dave Stewart. She is also making the leap to the big screen with her first voice role, starring alongside Edward Norton in the animated film Paper Birds Pt 2, which screened at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival.

 


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Breezy listening: Celebrate summer with IQ’s New Signings

The August edition of IQ’s New Signings playlist, featuring a selection of tracks curated by major international booking agencies, launches today, serving up a welcome dose of fresh new music as live continues its long summer hiatus.

Launched in May for the June issue, the playlist complements IQ Magazine’s popular New Signings page, which keeps the live industry updated about which new, emerging and re-emerging artists are being signed by agents.

The August edition features contributions from CAA, ICM Partners, ITB, Paradigm, UTA, X-ray Touring, Primary Talent, 13 Artists and ATC Live, each of which have picked five tracks apiece featuring some of their most exciting new talent.

Listen to the latest selection using the Spotify playlist below – or click here to catch up on the July edition first.

Separated by agency, the full track list for August’s New Signings playlist is:

 

AgencyArtistSong
CAATameraFlipside
CAABeneeSupalonely
CAANavvyPieces
CAAPurple Disco MachineHypnotized
CAARachel ChinouririBeautiful Disaster
ICMJAHMEDTWOTEN
ICMAlex PoratHappy For You
ICMAlex MaliObviously
ICMSarah BarriosI Didn’t Mean to
ICMMarcoOnly Want You
ITBHot MilkCalifornia’s Burning
ITBBananagunPeople Talk Too Much
ITBRed Rum ClubEleanor
ITBDream NailsJillian
ITBBright Light Bright LightI Used To Be Cool
ParadigmCamelphatHypercolour (featuring Yannis from Foals)
ParadigmMellahHabit
ParadigmLynkks AfrikkaHow To Be Successful
ParadigmRobert GraceFake Fine
ParadigmTrevor DanielPast Life (featuring Selena Gomez)
UTAChe Lingo (UK)My Blok
UTAFrankie Beetlestone (UK)HMU Again
UTADreyaSkippin
UTAEvann McIntosh (US)What Dreams Are Made Of
UTASilly Boy Blue (FR)The Fight
X-rayLuke La VolpeDead Man's Blues
X-rayLeyla BlueSilence
X-rayLittle HurtAlaska
X-rayTiagzMy Heart Went oops
X-rayPhoebe BridgersGarden Song
Primary TalentKate BollingerA Couple Things
Primary TalentYouth SectorNo Fanfare
Primary TalentBad GyalBom Bom
Primary TalentIzzy CaminaWrapped In Gold
Primary TalentMitskiStrawberry Blond
13 ArtistsThe LathumsAll my Life
13 ArtistsThe AcademicActing My Age
13 ArtistsHolly HumberstoneOverkill
13 ArtistsNito NBStarburst
13 ArtistsAnother SkyFell in Love with the City
ATCEmma-Jean ThackrayOpen- Remix
ATCWhoMadeWhoInterloper
ATCJade ImagineCoastal Pines
ATCReuben JamesRun Away
ATCRosalinaTiña

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Lockdown listening: IQ New Signings playlist returns

IQ’s New Signings playlist, featuring a selection of tracks curated by major international booking agencies, returns today, providing the perfect soundtrack for those long summer afternoons in lockdown.

Launched last month, the playlist complements IQ Magazine’s popular New Signings page, which keeps the live industry updated about which new, emerging and re-emerging artists are being signed by agencies.

The June edition features contributions from CAA, ITB, X-ray Touring, UTA, ATC Live, Primary Talent International, Paradigm, ICM, 13 Artists and Pitch & Smith, each of which have picked up to five tracks apiece featuring some of their most exciting new talent.

Listen to the latest selection using the Spotify playlist below – or click here if you missed May and need to catch up first.

Separated by agency, the full track list for June’s New Signings playlist is:

 

AgencyArtistTrack title
ATC LiveMoscomanEyes Wide Shut
Egyptian BlueNylon Wire
Christian Lee HutsonLose this Number
MalakiFair Play
Black PumasFast Car
CAAPip MillettJune
Avenue BeatI Don't Really Like Your Boyfriend
Freddie GibbsGod Is Perfect
Dan D’LionPull Me Under
Mimi WebbBefore I Go
ICM PartnersOdieSlowly
Nation of LanguageThe Wall & I
Madison BeerSelfish
VanJessDysfunctional
ITBPinsGhosting
October DriftForever Whatever
July 7Dentro
Samuel JackGotta Be Alright
The EstevansWrong Idea
ParadigmBakarHell N Back
Denzel CurryPig Feet (feat. Kamasi Washington, G Perico and Daylyt)
DuchessElephant
Mariah the ScientistRIP
Tkay MaidzaShook
UTAChe Lingo (UK)My Blok
Frankie Beetlestone (UK)HMU Again
DreyaSkippin
Evann McIntosh (US)What Dreams Are Made Of
Silly Boy Blue (FR)The Fight
X-ray TouringYumi ZoumaCool for a Second
Kris Barras BandWhat a Way to Go
The ChatsPub Feed
Broken Witt RebelsRunning with the Wolves
LovelythebandI Should be Happy
Primary TalentBiiclaNo Place
Thick5 Years Behind
Baby QueenInternet Religion
Luke ElliotAll on Board
CourtingsDavid Byrne's Badside
13 ArtistsJosh VineHow Many Times
The MysterinesI Win Every Time
Nito NBL’s Down
CaroFigure Me Out
Orlando WeeksBlame or Love or Nothing
Pitch & SmithLimeSurf N Turf
Jess WilliamsonInfinite Scroll
Drab CityTroubled Girl
Marie DavidsonWork It
Le RenLove Can’t be the Only Reason to Stay

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New signings continue during corona lockdown

Nearly three months into the shutdown of virtually all concert touring globally, booking agents and artist managers continue to discover and sign new talent, with many using the opportunity to bolster their rosters in anticipation of live music’s return, they tell IQ.

“Discovering new talent is a big part of the agent’s job, and since many of us are stuck at home with no shows happening currently, that gives us extra time to listen to new music and get interested in new artists, even more so than before,” says Belgian agent Guillaume Brevers, who left London’s ATC Live to set up his own agency, Hometown Talent, earlier this year.

“I believe it wasn’t the case in the first few weeks following [the outbreak of] the virus, as most of the agents were really busy postponing their tours, discussing festival cancellations, etc. But more recently, I personally have found I have more free time to focus on new music.”

Similarly, Dominik Meyer of Austria’s Cobra Agency tells IQ that while the early days of pandemic were largely spent dealing with cancellations and postponements, there is now definitely “more time to listen to music and explore new stuff”.

One London-based agent (who asked not be named) says he, too, has been signing new acts during the shutdown, as there are “things that I am definitely excited about and that I feel I need to sign now.” He adds that discovering new talent gives him a feeling of normality in strange times – as well as “a sense that there is a business to come back to.”

“Signing new talent is a good way for agents to remain proactive while no tours are taking place”

Also keeping calm and carrying on is Australian artist manager Andrew Stone, who leads Chugg Music, the management, publishing and label division of Michael Chugg’s Chugg Entertainment. Chugg Music’s most recent signing is Mason Watts, who agreed a label deal with the influencer-focused City Pop Records late last month.

With City Pop, says Stone, “we’re looking to sign artists now more than ever. There’s a focus on artists who have developed in the influencer/social media space” – City Pop’s first signing was TikTok star Mia Rodriguez – “so we feel at least somewhat prepared for a more online model of artist development. I think it’s a good time to build catalogue and grow communities on streaming, socials and radio, so that when the artists are heading out on the road in the future they have more than two songs that people know.”

Signing new talent is “a good way [for agents] to remain proactive” while no tours are taking place, comments Brevers, “so when things hopefully get back to normal, agents will be effective immediately and ready to provide their clients with the service they deserve”.

“In an industry where everything happens especially fast, I’m taking advantage of this new free time to think about new ways to reinvent myself as an agent,” he adds, “as well as how this industry could evolve to meet the challenges we’re facing in today’s society.”

Stone says lockdown is “forcing us to get really good at online marketing and collaborations. We are collaborating more than ever with artists across Zoom, and having features from other countries and languages, so that our international audience development isn’t completely halted by our inability to tour.”

“As long as there are engaged audiences, there will be a creative and nimble industry that can make the most of connecting with them”

With the return to full-scale concert touring believed to still be some way off, it depends on the individual agent or manager – and their personal circumstances – whether they’re using their relative downtime to scout for new talent, or just trying to survive, says the London agent.

“I think it comes down to the people,” they say. “Some are nervous about the future and just holding on, and some are understanding that it will pass and that they have to check new things out.”

They’re in the latter camp, they say – and so is Stone. He concludes: “I hope we’re not in denial about the long-term outcomes, but I think that so long as there are engaged audiences, there will be a creative and nimble industry that can make the most of connecting with them – whatever the circumstances.”

IQ launched its monthly New Signings playlist, which features tracks curated by a selection of major booking agencies, last week. Listen here:

IQ launches monthly agency playlist


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New signings and rising stars (Mar–Apr 2020)

Germany’s Sparkling, a new signing for ATC Live in London, and Scottish band Tide Lines, newly repped by Paradigm’s Rob Challice, are among the latest acts to have been added to the rosters of international agents.

Find out more – including a full list of new signings – below…

 


Sparkling (DE)

Agent: Felipe Mina Calvo, ATC Live

A concentrated blend of hypnotic drums, multifaceted pop songwriting and guitars, Sparkling bring us electrified post-punk, breathless and elegant, somewhere between Cologne and London. In the universal language of pop, the music transcends its featured languages of German, English and French. If you are after sweaty euphoria, this is your promised land.

Sparkling released their long-awaited debut album I Want to See Everything (IWTSE) in August 2019, and it has been making huge waves since. As one of the first German bands to play a Maida Vale Session for BBC Radio 1, Sparkling made it onto BBC 6 Music’s heavy rotation list and are frequently played by Annie Mac, Matt Wilkinson, Jack Saunders, Steve Lamacq and many more.

IWTSE has been featured in countless blogs and magazines across Europe including Musikexpress, Rolling Stone and Magic Magazine, and has created a buzz around one of the most exciting bands Germany has produced in years.

 


Paradigm's Tide Lines

Tide Lines (UK)

Agent: Rob Challice, Paradigm

Winners of the Rising Sound of Young Scotland award at the Scottish Music Awards, Tide Lines’ new single, ‘Shadow to the Light’, is set for release on 6 March, ahead of the band’s eagerly awaited second album, which will be released in the spring.

Written by singer/frontman Robert Robertson, the new track is a rabble-rousing anthem that the band recently debuted at their sell-out Barrowlands Ballroom show.

“I tend to write better at nighttime when my train of thought is uninterrupted,” says Robertson. “But sitting alone with my guitar trying to finish a song before the morning can be a pretty solitary experience. The idea of ‘the place I see in the all-too-distant light’ came to me on one such night. It is the place I was brought up (in the Highlands), which is something my mind can hold onto as a form of escapism and hope.”

The band have been selected by Scottish Rugby to provide the pre-match entertainment at the Six Nations match between Scotland and France at Murrayfield on 8 March, performing four songs to the sell-out crowd of 60,000 and countless millions watching on television. In May, they’ll embark on a seven-date tour of Scotland.

 


For full artist listings, including new signings for Primary Talent, UTA, ATC Live, X-ray, Paradigm, ITB, Echo Location, Progressive Artists, Pitch & Smith and the Lullabye Factory, see the digital edition of IQ 88:


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UTA signs “legendary” Yusuf/Cat Stevens

United Talent Agency (UTA) has signed award-winning singer-songwriter Yusuf Islam, commonly known by the stage name Cat Stevens and later Yusuf, for representation in all areas.

The singer joins the UTA roster, which includes artists such as Craig David, Mariah Carey, Ringo Starr and Pink Floyd. Yusuf continues to be managed by Yoriyos Adamos at Catch Bull Management.

Making his debut in the mid-1960s, Yusuf is best known for songs such as ‘Peace Train’, ‘Moonshadow’ and ‘Morning has Broken’.

Yusuf has recently been recognised with some of the industry’s highest honours

He has recently been recognised with some of the industry’s highest honours, including induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame the Songwriters’ Hall of Fame in 2019.

The singer toured Australia, New Zealand, the UK, United States and Canada in 2017, following the release of his 15th studio album the Laughing Apple, which was nominated for a Grammy Award for best folk album.

In addition to music, Yusuf has been recognised for his humanitarianism, winning the Man of Peace Award at the World Summit of Noble Peace Laureates and currently working on the Peace Train aid project.

 


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New signings and rising stars (July–Aug 2019)

Kathryn Joseph (UK)

Agents: Rob Gibbs and Shane Daunt, Progressive Artists

Having won the Scottish Album of the Year in 2015 for her debut, Bones You Have Thrown Me and Blood I’ve Spilled, Kathryn Joseph’s popularity has continued to snowball, thanks in no small part to what she describes as her “weird, creepy way of telling the truth” in her lyrics.

Last year, Joseph released a new album, From When I Wake the Want Is, and following a number of European dates supporting Neko Case in 2018, she completed her own headline tour in the UK in the first quarter of this year.

Critical acclaim for her second album has been as solid as her debut, and word of mouth is beginning to spread outside of the UK to overseas promoters, radio stations and tastemakers. In addition to a handful of UK summer festival dates, Joseph has an autumn headline tour confirmed, and a November appearance at Blue Bird Festival in Vienna.

 


Sheer Mag, ATC Live

Sheer Mag (US)

Agent: Will Church, ATC Live

With Sheer Mag announcing 23 August as the release date for sophomore album, A Distant Call, the buzz around the Philadelphia quintet in the music press is growing. While the band is still pursuing the theme of surviving the current hellscape, this time around the politics get extra-personal.

The album verges on being a concept piece, the protagonist of which resembles front-woman, Tina Halladay, herself. The songs document a particularly alienating time in her life when she was laid off from a job. Broke and newly single, her father passed away, leaving her with more wounds than it felt possible to heal. It’s heavy power-pop so sleek it gleams.

“We’ve been waiting to write these songs since we started the band and we were able to take these experiences and build a story out of them,” Halladay says. A Distant Call makes an argument for socialism on an anecdotal level. Matt Palmer (guitar/keyboards) and Halladay’s new approach to lyricism extended to the recording process, too. Once the Seely brothers (Hart and Kyle) had laid down the guitar and bass tracks, Halladay recorded vocals with producer Arthur Rizk (Power Trip, Code Orange).

An 11-date, seven-country European tour has been confirmed for October and November, with additional shows in the pipeline, too, according to agent Will Church.

 


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New signings and rising stars (May-June 2019)

Belako (ES)

Agent: Matt Bates, Primary Talent

Hailing from Mungia in the Basque Country, Belako (Josu Ximun Billelabeitia, Lore Nekane Billelabeitia, Lander Zalakain and Cristina Lizarraga) have been playing non-stop throughout Europe for the last two years, including at some of Spain’s biggest festivals.

They won Radio3 and Gaztea awards in 2012; Best New Band awards from Rolling Stone and MIN in 2015; RNE’s Best Modern Music Band gong in 2016; the Best Live Award at both MIN and the Iberian Music Awards in 2017; and last year saw them add MIN’s Best Band, Best Live and Best Video (for ‘Render Me Numb’) to their growing list of accolades.

Belako are high intensity with hypnotic melodies, great riffs, amazing bass rhythms and powerful drums. Every live show goes from the darkness to the light, from the 80s through to the 21st century, from sweet vocals to screams.

With three albums now under their belts, Belako have been honing their stage presence by playing 100+ gigs per year, and with dates across Europe, the USA, Mexico, Russia, Japan, Korea and the Philippines, they have been steadily growing their international fan base, too.

 


Belako, George Gretton: new signings and rising stars
George Gretton (UK)

Agent: Sol Parker, Coda Agency

Art-pop and alternative R&B are just two of the genres that can be applied to George Gretton’s debut Tread Water. Growing up in Nottingham and now London-based, the multi-instrumentalist, singer and producer is sculpting a forward-thinking and trendless sound that’s distinctly his, via atypical arrangements, experimental processing and fitful drum samples.

Tread Water was written at a time when I didn’t really have a musical identity or lyrics to draw inspiration from. I had just started to teach myself basic production and I had become fascinated with vocal manipulation and using a contrast between organic and artificial sounds to tell different sides of the same situation,” says Gretton.

“I suddenly found that writing with obscure instrumentation gave me a lot of creative freedom, and the lyrics and arrangement came together pretty quickly after that.”

Out of that desire for musical identity, Gretton’s creative freedom flourished, and he is now making music akin to such iconic artists as Ben Khan, James Blake and with echoes of Bon Iver. The genius in the self- produced Tread Water is in its understated simplicity; organic sounds perfectly collide with electronic, pulling focus to the innovative and stellar songwriting.

 


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Paradigm signs Eurythmics’ Dave Stewart

Grammy Award-winning musician, songwriter and producer Dave Stewart has signed with Paradigm Talent Agency for worldwide representation.

The former Eurythmic will be represented by Paradigm’s Tom Windish and newly appointed global head of music Marty Diamond in all areas. Stewart was formerly represented by Jon Pleeter at ICM Partners.

Stewart (pictured) has sold more than 100 million albums over a four-decade career. In addition to being one half of Eurythmics, alongside bandmate Annie Lennox, Stewart has produced and written songs with artists including Mick Jagger, Tom Petty, Bob Dylan, Gwen Stefani, Bon Jovi, Stevie Nicks, Bryan Ferry, Katy Perry, Sinead O’Connor and Joss Stone.

He has also scored a number of independent films, as well as writing and producing title songs for many hit movies, including Jagger’s Golden Globe-winning ‘Old Habits Die Hard’, from Alfie (2004).

“Paradigm’s mandate to push the boundaries of creativity makes partnering with Dave a natural fit”

Stewart is additionally the creator and executive producer of NBC’s upcoming songwriting competition series Songland, and, along with the late Paul Allen, the creator and co-founder of London’s Hospital Club and Los Angeles’ new hClub.

Paradigm will represent Dave Stewart globally, in all areas. Stewart is also represented by attorney Peter Paterno (KHPS), manager Dave Kaplan (DKM) and publicists Kristen Foster and Michael Donkis (PMK*BNC).

“Paradigm’s mandate to push the boundaries of creativity makes partnering with Dave a natural fit,” says Diamond. “Dave is a maverick and one of the most underrated guitarists of all time, [and] we are thrilled to be a part of his evolution as a global media multi-hyphenate.”

“I’m excited to work with Marty Diamond, Tom Windish and the powerhouse team at Paradigm,” adds Stewart. “I am a polymath with music at the core of everything I do, and still have that hunger to disrupt, create and build new worlds and platforms, so music has an interesting and exciting journey ahead. I’m happy we will be on that journey together.”

 


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New signings & rising stars (Mar–Apr 2019)

MarthaGunn (UK)

Agent: Steve Backman and Stefan Romer, Primary Talent

This five-piece band formed in Brighton and are named after a local heroine known as “the priestess of the bath.” Drawing from the bandmates’ various influences, MarthaGunn are mining an eclectic mix of the ’70s, indie- rock and classically tinged pop music.

A large proportion of the last year has been spent in a remote house in Wales, writing what will be the band’s next batch of releases and eventual first album. During this period they have also toured with AnnenMayKantereit in Germany and Austria, and Findlay and Blind Pilot in the UK, and have played a number of festivals including Kendal Calling, the Great Escape and Womad.

 


Arielle

Arielle (US)

Agent: Phyllis Belezos, ITB

A music industry triple threat, Arielle could enjoy an impressive career solely either as a singer or songwriter or guitar player, but has combined all three of those gifts to create a unique artistry that defies genres and borders.

She opened for Eric Johnson on his three-month US tour last year, and has also supported and played with the likes of Vince Gill, Gregg Allman, Heart, Joan Jett, Country Joe McDonald, Eric Johnson, Paul Gilbert, Andy Timmons, and many more. Arielle has already made the cover of Guitar Player magazine and released the single ‘California’, which reached no3 on the CMT Pure Country chart, while her most recent release, ‘My Gypsy Heart’, debuted for eight weeks in the Billboard charts in 11 different categories.

Arielle was the guitar player for Avery in the TV show Nashville (also the city where she currently resides), and the purity of her four-octave voice draws comparison to Karen Carpenter and Eva Cassidy.

 


Morgane Ji

Morgane Ji (Fr)

Agent: Markus Rogue, Agents 4 Music

Morgane Ji is the perfect example of the successful blending of multiple ancestries with her African, Indian and Asian roots. As for her style and aesthetic approach, no one has managed to pigeonhole her; she strives to create the unexpected.

A pop-rock musician and practitioner of world electronic music, Reunion-born Morgane Ji is immediately recognisable thanks to her unique voice: protean, raspy, soft, animal-like. Her wide vocal range, melodic lines and shamanic cries offer audiences entertainment and excitement, as her performances feel like journeys through deep emotional and visual worlds.

Her album, Woman Soldier, was released last year to critical acclaim. She will be taking her unique talents to Colombia in March for two shows, and appearing at festivals in Russia, Switzerland, Spain and the Netherlands this summer.

 


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