BBC Sound of 2023: Cat Burns, FLO, Fred again and Rachel Chinouriri the London acts vying for BBC’s Sound of 2023

Will any of the London acts nominated for the BBC Sound of 2023 join the likes of Adele, Stormzy and Sam Smith in becoming “the” sound of next year?
Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now

The BBC has released their shortlist of up-and-coming and on-the-verge musicians to look out for next year with their Sound of 2023 list. The list, which works its way to the number one position across this month with the winner revealed by the BBC on January 5 2023 with a number of London acts appearing in the final artists selected.

The BBC Sound of list was open to new artists who had yet to achieve a Top 5 album or more than two Top 10 singles by October 31, 2022; artists who have appeared on TV talent shows within the last three years are ineligible. Previous winners include Adele, Stormzy, Sam Smith and Haim.

The list this year has been dominated by electronic music acts, including Manchester bedroom duo Piri and Tommy, Bradford jungle producer Nia Archives and London producer Fred again.., AKA Fred Gibson, who has worked with acts such as Stormzy and Charli XCX and struck out as a solo act in 2021.

International representation comes in the form of Nigerian singer Asake, who combines Afrobeats, Nigerian fuji and the South African club genre amapiano, and Gabriels, whose singer Jacob Lusk is a former American Idol contestant turned choirmaster. Their soulful debut album Angels and Queens Part One, released in September, earned praise for “a sound that feels entirely of the moment” by Guardian music writer Alexis Petridis.

Londonworld has had a look at the London based artists that have been shortlisted on the BBC’s Sound of 2023 shortlist, alongside a full list of this year’s/next year’s nominees for the prestigious number one position.

The London artists on the BBC Sound of 2023 shortlist

Cat Burns

Cat Burns is a 21 year old singer and songwriter from Streatham. The former BRIT school student went from busking on the Southbank to mastering Tik Tok in lockdown, singing a mix of her favourite covers and original music. As a result, she rapidly amassed around half a million followers in just three months and now sits on over 1 million followers on the platform.

Her song Go featuring Sam Smith was released in July 2020 and reached the number 2 position in the UK singles chart, and is included in her latest EP, Emotionally Unavailable.

(L-R) Both Cat Burns and FLO are aiming to climb to the top of the BBC’s Sound of 2023 list by its announcement on January 5 2023.(L-R) Both Cat Burns and FLO are aiming to climb to the top of the BBC’s Sound of 2023 list by its announcement on January 5 2023.
(L-R) Both Cat Burns and FLO are aiming to climb to the top of the BBC’s Sound of 2023 list by its announcement on January 5 2023.

FLO

FLO are considered to be bringing back a golden age of all-female groups akin to SWV and En Vogue, with their debut single, Cardboard Box, amassing 900,000 views on YouTube after its release.

FLO performed on Jimmy Kimmel Live! for the first time on October 6th, 2022, which was their television debut. They made their UK television debut on Later... with Jools Holland the following month.

Fred again..

You may not be familiar with the name, but you certainly will be familiar with Fred Gibson a.k.a Fred again.. in terms of his production credits. Count Charli XCX, FKA Twigs, Swedish House Mafia, BTS, Baxter Dury, Stormzy, Ed Sheeran, Burna Boy, Headie One, Halsey, Eminem, Octavian and The xx as some of the artists he has collaborated with.

Gibson won Producer of the Year at the Brit Awards 2020, becoming the youngest producer to ever win the title. He started his solo career around 2019 with his Actual Life projects, ahead of a celebrated set earlier this year at the Boiler Room in London.

(L-R) Both Fred Gibson a.k.a Fred again.. and Rachel Chinouriri have had a fantastic year, warranting their place in the BBC Sound of 2023 shortlist(L-R) Both Fred Gibson a.k.a Fred again.. and Rachel Chinouriri have had a fantastic year, warranting their place in the BBC Sound of 2023 shortlist
(L-R) Both Fred Gibson a.k.a Fred again.. and Rachel Chinouriri have had a fantastic year, warranting their place in the BBC Sound of 2023 shortlist

Rachel Chinouriri

Rachel Chinouriri is a singer/songwriter from Croydon. Rachel is the youngest in a large family, and the only child born in England rather than her native Zimbabwe. Her family’s traditional Zimbabwean values meant she sometimes felt isolated from her cultural surroundings. She found solace in writing and recording music. Her limited exposure to pop music and her self taught singing/guitar meant she developed a totally unique style.

At the age of 17 she wrote an EP and recorded it on her laptop using a 20.00 pound microphone, mixed it on her mum’s laptop and dropped it on Soundcloud. The EP is aptly named ‘Bedroom Tales’, and saw support from BBC Introducing pretty much instantly, establishing Rachel as an act to watch.

Full shortlist of acts on the BBC Sound of 2023 shortlist

  • Asake
  • Biig Piig
  • Cat Burns
  • Rachel Chinouriri
  • Dylan
  • FLO
  • Fred again…
  • Gabriels
  • Nia Archives
  • Piri and Tommy
Related topics: