With the new year just beginning here are five artists I believe are poised to be household names in 2016.
Smilar to: Drake, The Weeknd, Ty Dolla $ign
Tory Lanez had a breakout year in 2015 featuring on Meek Mill’s “Lord Knows” and making waves with his hit single “Say It”. But, Tory Lanez has been releasing phenomenal music ever since I first discovered him in Summer 2011 with his mixtape, Swavey. Lanez has the unique talent of having pop likability while also staying true to his sound. He has that “Toronto sound”, but he also has a distinctness to him that is different than his Toronto counterparts. Imagine someone who can rap like Meek Mill but also can croon like Jeremih. Lanez has a huge range of talent that he can display at any moment. He even has three solely R&B projects called Chixtape, Chixtape 2, and his newly released Chixtape 3. I believe Tory Lanez is the next star to fully emerge from Toronto, and seeing how successful other Toronto artists have been in recent years I see nothing stopping him from having a huge 2016.
Projects/Songs to listen to: Conflicts Of My Soul, Lost Cause, Sincerely Tory, Mr. Peterson
Origin: Dallas, TX
Similar to: Mac Miller, Casey Veggies, PARTYNEXTDOOR
I believe Post Malone is going to be the Fetty Wap of 2016. By that I mean he is going to blow up to be one of the biggest voices of hip-hop in the blink of an eye. Ironically he is also going on tour with Fetty Wap starting in February. All the ingredients are there. A huge single in “White Iverson”, a solid SoundCloud discography, a feature on a Kanye West song, and a debut album to be released in March. Expect to start hearing Post Malone everywhere because he is going to have a HUGE 2016.
Projects/Songs to listen to: No full projects yet, “#mood”, “What’s Up”, “TEAR$”, “That’s It”
Origin: Washington, D.C.
Similar to: Isaiah Rashad, Mick Jenkins, Allan Kingdom
GoldLink first popped up on my radar in late 2014 with his debut project, The God Complex. He truly sounds like nobody in mainstream hip-hop right now. His unique production, flow, and voice are unlike anything I’ve heard from a traditional rapper. GoldLink is sometimes classified as “Dance Rap”. He definitely has songs that make you move, and he is the first rapper I’ve heard of to ever go on tour with ODESZA. At the same time, GoldLink can make intimate songs about love including “Palm Trees” and “Unique”. He just released his latest album, And After That, We Didn’t Talk in November, and I am confident he will take this momentum into 2016.
Projects/Songs to listen to: The God Complex, And After That, We Didn’t Talk
Origin: Los Angeles, CA
Similar to: Raury, Alina Baraz, Shy Girls
Indie Electronia music really grew on me this past year. Gallant was one of the highlights of this new discovery and he looks to be making moves for 2016. Gallant reminds me a lot of Alina Baraz. An incredible voice that puts his complete emotions into each song he does. Freshly coming off a tour with Sufjan Stevens he proved he is deserving of all the recognition he has been receiving since his 2014 EP, Zebra-EP. I could see Gallant have a year similar to the one The Weeknd had in 2015. He made a personal project with Zebra-EP, but also has all the tools to have huge pop success. I expect to hear a lot more from Gallant in 2016.
Projects/Songs to listen to: Zebra-EP, “Weight in Gold”
Origin: New York City
Similar to: ODESZA, Big Wild, The Chainsmokers
For some reason all Spotify thinks I listen to is Electronic music and with my Discover Weekly playlist I was constantly being thrown a ton of remixes and EDM hits. Few caught my attention as much as Jai Wolf, in particular his remix of the Dirty South song, “With You”. Unlike traditional mainstream DJs such as Avicii and Zedd, Jai Wolf doesn’t go for pop hits. He makes music that makes you straight up want to move. Although he only has one hit that is solely his, “Indian Summer”, Jai Wolf can remix anything into a dance anthem. I hope to hear more solo material from Jai Wolf in 2016 and expect nothing but a great year for him.
Projects/Songs to listen to: “Dirty South- With You (Jai Wolf Remix)”, “Indian Summer”, “Mocki- Weekend (Jai Wolf Remix)”
Follow me on Twitter @GroJoebeck and check out my article about the Top 10 albums of 2015 (https://joegrobeck.wordpress.com/2015/12/30/top-10-albums-of-2015/)