While new artists have never had greater access to a global audience, the sheer volume of music turning up daily online makes it just as hard as it was in bygone days for them to be heard. So it’s no mean feat for any young artist to break through and make a real connection with fans.
Here is Shuffle’s choice of 10 Irish artists who are making an impact and are ones to watch in 2023.
Having an association with U2 as Inhaler does – the lead singer’s dad happens to be the lead singer of the Irish rock legends – may have got big-wigs in the music industry to sit up and take notice of them.
But Inhaler have already proved that they deserve the Next Big Thing title on their own merits with their fanatical following and arsenal of great songs.
Their second album, Cuts & Bruises, is due out next month.
Moncrieff has been building up a head of steam in recent years, with a particularly good run in 2022 when he played the main stage at Electric Picnic and sold out Dublin’s 3Olympia in December.
He’s caught the ear of Elton John and was a backing singer with Adele along the way. Personal struggles are the fuel for his creativity.
Belters Only had one of the biggest hits in the UK last year with Make Me Feel Good.
As well as reaching number four in the UK charts, the Dublin collective spent two consecutive weeks at number one in Ireland with the track – the first homegrown dance act to top the charts in two decades.
Irish DJ Shane Codd became a superstar in the making with the release of his global hit, Get Out My Head. Suddenly Codd was one of the most sought-after dance remixers in modern music, spinning his magic on tracks for top acts including Little Mix, Becky Hill, Ann-Marie and Ellie Goulding.
Robert Grace was Ireland’s most viewed music star on TikTok last year. The 29-year-old songwriter and singer, who has 2.3 million followers on the platform, gained a massive following through his hit songs such as Fake Fine, Not OK, Hate Me and Fckd In The Head.
Lea Heart instantly got noticed when she started posting songs, both covers and originals, on TikTok. She was snapped by music manager Brian Whitehead (Picture This/Ryan Sheridan) and has an exciting year ahead.
Singer-songwriter Conor Byrne hit the spotlight late last year with his infectious track, Girls On The Internet. The 28-year-old rising star from Tralee, Co. Kerry, wrote the song about a break-up and secured Lewis Capaldi’s producer, Ed Holloway, to spin his magic in the studio.
Irish multi-instrumentalist Mia Fitzgerald from Dublin was songwriting in Los Angeles during a break on the Hozier tour when she met Glasgow-born songwriter Mia Etherson.
They teamed up under the moniker Siights, and have been championed by Elton John’s Rocket Hour and the BBC.
Singer-songwriter Saibh Skelly cut her teeth as a performer by busking on Grafton Street. And the exciting young artist, who is signed to the Rubyworks label, says that lockdown proved to be a huge boost for her profile on social media, where numbers on her Instagram account trebled to more than 90,000 followers.
Faraway Martin, aka Martin Farragher, from Co. Mayo and now based in Qatar, got his big break at the World Cup when his song, I Got Fire, was chosen by the event sponsors Hyundai for their advertising campaign.