Artists to Watch for 2009

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2008 was a year that saw Rihanna solidify herself as an R&B diva and stars like Rick Ross and Lil Wayne firmly cement their positions in the hip hop genre. Who will make noise in the New Year? Here are a few artists you need to keep an eye on.

Estelle

This British soul sensation piqued the interest of the music industry with her debut release, The 18th Day, a refreshing composition that showed her abilities as a lyrical genius. Estelle’s first album garnered the attention of several major producers and artists, leading her to a deal on John Legend’s Home School Records. Fans learned that she was not only well versed in hip hop, but soul-shifting love ballads as well. Her critically acclaimed album Shine, let the world know that Estelle is here to stay, and possibly make another big splash in 2009.

Emily King

Despite a brief stint in the industry, Emily King has already wowed enough fans to earn a Grammy Award nomination as a singer and songwriter. Her 2007 debut album, East Side Story, unleashed the deep, ambitious roots of a young woman with a story to tell.  King mentions of being inspired by every record she ever heard, largely influenced by artists such as Nas, Sarah Vaughan, the Beatles and Michael Jackson. The daughter of two jazz musicians, Emily King is looking to build on her successful run in contemporary R&B.

Prince Damons

Renowned music producer Prince Damons is working on a tuneful solo project for 2009. Entitled Atmospheric Soul, this highly anticipated album is set to offer the best of all worlds, embracing the sounds of modern R&B, Old School Soul, hip hop, jazz and a complimenting touch of spoken word. Damons has gathered an impressive lineup as the project will include Celebrity recording artists Too Short, E-40, Dwele, Goapele, and Lenny Williams among others Atmospheric Soul is tentatively scheduled for a May 2009 launch.

Ledisi

Ledisi’s debut album, Soulsinger: The Revival, featured tracks that were reminiscent of poetic artists such as Jill Scott -Heron and Nikki Giovanni. Bold cuts like “Papa Loved to Love Me” showed that she wasn’t afraid to bring controversial subjects to light while “I Wantcha Babe” displayed a jazzy flavor that displayed her versatility. Ledisi soulfully dazzled the world with her third album, Lost & Found and left us craving more with her joyous It’s Christmas album this past holiday season.

Nicci Nix

A fresh new face on the scene, Nicci Nix is a 22 year old pop singer/songwriter with a bright future in the music industry. Delivering hit singles like “Sexcessful Virgin” and “Love Drifter,” she has gathered a strong following with funky retro sounds and spirited lyrics. Displaying her talents on MTV’s “Making the Band,” Nicci has fans anxiously anticipating her debut album.

D’Angelo

Diehard soul lovers will not want to miss D’Angelo’s new release. This smooth, soulful sensation hasn’t been on the scene since his sophomore album, Voodoo, in 2000. His 1995 debut, Brown Sugar, gained him millions of fans while Voodoo won a Grammy Award for Best R&B album. D’Angelo has been laying down tracks for the past year and gave us a sneak peak of the new album with the exclusive single, “I Found My Smile Again.”

Listen to the latest  soul and hip hop tracks by visiting Prince “BlkMagic” Damons, where you can experience the latest in Atmospheric Soul, featuring Too Short, Goapele and more.

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