Three of Manchester’s music acts are in with a chance of being named the BBC Sound of 2018 after being included on the longlist. The award holds great significance for music artists and past winners include the likes of Ellie Goulding, Jessie J and Sam Smith. ‘The Sound of’ is an annual poll which takes into consideration the opinion of leading industry experts hoping to find a breakthrough artist for the year.

Manchester is well represented on the 15 artist list with three nominees. From the city IAMDDB, Pale Waves and Tom Walker have been put forward.

So who are the three artists who will be in the running for the BBC Sound of 2018?


The unique name is an a acronym of I Am Diana DeBrito. Her sound is described by the BBC as, “Fusing soulful vocals with trap beats,” and it is certainly creating a buzz. At 21 the future is bright for the Manchester based singer and the videos she has produced are interesting and clean cut letting the viewer know that IAMDDB has her own style.

The distinctive nature of the artist has led to her standing out in the industry and guided her to being in contention for this award. Her love for home town is well documented and she believes the city in underrated. Expect to see lots of different music from IAMDDB in 2018.

Pale Waves

The band may be Manchester natives but they are currently performing in America for the remainder of 2017. Pale Waves will kick-start next year by returning to Europe and embarking on a 27 (confirmed so far) date tour. They will return to Manchester’s Gorilla bar on the 6th March 2018.

The indie band are currently working on their first album as they tour. Pale Waves were formed by friends Heather Baron-Gracie and Ciara Doran. Baron-Gracie is on vocals and guitar and Doran takes care of the drums. The band caught the attention of The 1975’s lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist Matty Healy and have worked with band before taking them on tour.

Tom Walker

It is difficult to place Tom Walker’s music in any one genre. His musical upbringing was varied listening to anything and everything he could get his hands on. Walker is currently touring around Europe but he will finish his live shows in Manchester on the 9th December playing at the O2 Apollo.

When speaking of his style Walker offered up this description, “a mix between hip hop, a tiny bit of blues, a bit of pop with a splash of reggae”. One thing is for sure his music is a joy to listen to.

All three will find out if they have made the top five between the 8th and 12th of January on BBC Radio 1. The inclusion of these artists show that the music scene in Manchester is vibrant and continues to produce excellent talent.



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