SiriusXM and Pandora Predict the Breakout Artists of 2020
The cross-genre list features 24 artists to watch in the upcoming year
NEW YORK– December 12, 2019 – SiriusXM and Pandora today announced the lineup of emerging artists they predict will make it big in 2020. Selected by the combined company’s music editorial, programming, and curation teams, the 24 artists spanning genres including country, rock, pop, hip hop, Latin, dance, and more.
“This list represents an exciting and fascinating range of music, and we look forward to our listeners discovering and listening to these new artists in 2020 and beyond on SiriusXM and Pandora,” said Scott Greenstein, SiriusXM’s President and Chief Content Officer. “Our platforms are the best place to discover new music and we look forward to introducing and promoting these talented artists to our listeners across both services.”
SiriusXM and Pandora’s 2020 Predictions:
Ali Gatie: Ali Gatie is no stranger to Pandora’s Trendsetters and Predictions charts and understandably so. His heart-wrenching lyrics coupled with his moody, lo-fi production truly gives us all the feels. His hit single “It’s You” debuted earlier in 2019, and definitely got the world’s attention and garnered tens of millions of streams. Ali Gatie’s music is a refreshing reminder of how necessary it can be to lean into heartache from time to time.
Arin Ray: Arin Ray first took his shot at stardom as a contestant on The X Factor back in 2012. Since then, he’s been writing hits for several artists like John Legend, Chris Brown, Nicki Minaj and Jeremih. While currently signed to Interscope/Universal, Arin has so far cracked the Pandora Predictions Chart Top 10 with “A Seat,” his biggest single to date.
Arizona Zervas: Within a month of its release on October 10, 2019, this Maryland-born rapper, singer and songwriter’s song “Roxanne” began receiving SiriusXM airplay support on multiple channels including The Heat, Hip Hop Nation and Hits1. In the wake of SiriusXM’s support, the song has gone on to be streamed more than 100 million times and has landed in the top 25 on the Top 40 chart and top 15 on the Rhythmic chart. In mid-November, Zervas signed with Columbia Records.
BENEE: New Zealand-born Benee, a shortened version of her name, Stella Bennette, first grabbed our attention back in 2018 with her single “Soaked,” which is certified gold in NZ. Since then, she’s gone on to release her debut EP where she blends nostalgic sounds with uptempo moments where she completely bends genre.
Doja Cat: This Southern California singer, songwriter, rapper and producer’s song “Juicy” received its first national airplay on SiriusXM’s Shade 45 in early March, and has since gone on to receive major playlist support on The Heat. The song is currently in the top 15 on both the Rhythmic and Urban radio charts. Doja will wrap up 2019 by taking part in SiriusXM’s exclusive live coverage of the Rolling Loud Festival in LA.
Ekali: Ekali, the Canadian-born producer and DJ, was first known for early production credits on Drake’s If You’re Reading This, It’s Too Late, along with high-profile collaborations with Denzel Curry, Yuna, K. Flay, Medasin, and ZHU. Since then, Ekali has been out slaying Festivals like Coachella, Lollapalooza, Life is Beautiful, EDC and Ultra while his 2018 EP Crystal Eyes was nominated for a Juno award. We’re so excited for his new music next year, and so far we’ve gotten a taste of his new album with collaborations from Au/Ra, Wafia, and Illenium.
Fire From The Gods: Hailing from Austin, Texas, Fire From The Gods received their first radio play of their career in 2016 when SiriusXM’s Octane played “Excuse Me.” Since then, the band was signed to a new label, Better Noise, and their new song “Right Now” made its World Premiere on Octane. In the following weeks, Octane also identified the song as an “Octane Accelerator” when it was the first national radio outlet to play the song in a regular rotation. The song has since been on Octane’s “Big Uns” top 15 weekly countdown for more than 10 consecutive weeks.
Gabby Barrett: SiriusXM’s The Highway selected Gabby Barrett as a ”Highway Find” artist after the success of her single “I Hope” in February 2019. Four months later, Gabby signed with Warner Music Nashville and “I Hope” reached #1 on The Highway’s Hot 30 Countdown.
girl in red: 20 year old Norwegian singer Marie Ulven seemed to come out of nowhere with a dreamy new take on bedroom indie pop. Her music sweetly sums up all too relatable misgivings of heading into adulthood like depression, insecurity, and unrequited love. Considering she’s only been making music for a little under three years and already making major waves, there is no doubt that this is just the start of something big.
Hailey Whitters: Hailey Whitters is a rising force in country music. This independent artist spent 2019 on the road opening for Maren Morris, and has written hits for Little Big Town, Alan Jackson and Martina McBride. In a time where the sonic breadth of country music continues to grow, Hailey Whitters is a refreshing reminder of what its true roots sound like with the 2019 release of her EP The Days.
Isabela Merced: Isabela Merced’s catchy single “Papi,” where she makes it clear that relationships will be on her terms and she stands on her own, flew up the US top 40 charts. So in addition to her being a movie star (she acted in Instant Family and Sicario: Day of the Soldado), we can add bad-ass pop star to her resume as well.
Koffee: In a brief span of time, 19 year old Koffee (aka Mikayla Simpson) has risen from social media sensation to one of the most heralded artists in reggae. After some immediate buzz around her first few singles, she released “Toast” late in 2018 – an anthemic song that has resonated with audiences worldwide. Her Rapture EP followed in 2019, along with tours in the UK and opening for Daniel Caesar’s US tour. Her EP was included in this year’s Grammy nominations for Best Reggae Album, earning Koffee the accolade for the youngest artist ever nominated in the category. With a new album on the horizon and a new single “W” featuring Gunna already bubbling up, 2020 looks to be a huge year for Koffee.
Layton Greene: Layton Greene is the first R&B artist signed to Quality Control (home of Migos, Lil Yachty, Lil Baby & City Girls). Her QC debut song “Leave Em Alone” has garnered nearly 100 million streams on Pandora and over 350 million worldwide.
Lil Keed: Lil Keed had the streets buzzing with his single “Nameless.” Born and raised in Atlanta, Keed grew up in the same neighborhood as fellow ATL rapper Young Thug and is signed to Thug’s label YSL Records in a joint venture with 300 Entertainment. On top of releasing his own critically acclaimed projects, Lil Keed has appeared on tracks with Future, Young Thug, Gunna, Jacquees just to name a few.
Lil Tjay: Lil TJay represents the new wave of NYC rappers. Hailing from the South Bronx, TJay combines witty lyrics with a unique style and melodic flow. At only 18 years old, he’s grabbed the attention of the entire industry, especially after his feature on Polo G’s “Pop Out” and his own track “Brothers.”
Mahalia: Mahalia has a sound that has transcended beyond the UK. Named after gospel great Mahalia Jackson, this young lady started writing and recording music back in 2015. Each release pulled her deeper into the R&B spotlight that she now shares with fellow Brit, Ella Mai. “What You Did” is Mahalia’s first single to debut on the US Billboard R&B charts.
Mallrat: Brisbane-based indie pop sensation Mallrat has been slowly garnering a buzz for the past several years. Already a household name in her native country of Australia, she has secured opening slots for big names like Post Malone and Maggie Rogers. Take into account her uber catchy upbeat tracks that showcase her affinity for the 90s that undoubtedly put you in a good mood and have you bobbing your head and singing along only shows her mainstream success here in the states is imminent.
NLE Choppa: NLE Choppa is the next big thing to come out of Memphis, a city which has a tradition of producing dope rappers. At the young age of 17, Choppa only started taking rap seriously a few years ago, but once he got serious he’s been a force to be reckoned with. His breakout song “Shotta Flow” went viral, helping NLE Choppa leverage his own record label in partnership with Warner Records.
Paloma Mami: Palomi Mami began buzzing at the end of 2018, and the interest continues to grow since debuting on the Pandora Predictions chart in March of this year. The 20 year old Chilean-American singer is taking full advantage of her bi-cultural upbringing, with her signature brand of moody Latin urban/R&B, anchored by a convincing combo of voice and lyricism that is equally adept in both English and Spanish.
Pink Sweat$: Pink Sweat$ actually wears pink sweats a lot. It’s a part of his brand as well as being a descriptor of his laidback soulful sound. His independently-released single “Honesty” catapulted Pink to the forefront of the R&B landscape at the end of 2018. He’s newly-signed to Atlantic Records, releasing the remix to “Honesty” with Jessie Reyez.
Roddy Ricch: SiriusXM’s Hip Hop Nation world debuted his track “Die Young” and named it a “Hip Hop Nation First Alert” record in mid-July 2018, since then the channel has gone on to support his songs, “Die Young” and “Tip Toe” as well as his recent collaborations with Marshmello and DJ Mustard. Roddy spent part of summer 2019 opening for Post Malone, and wrapped up the year by releasing his debut full length album, Please Excuse Me for Being Antisocial, on December 6th.
Tones And I: Tones and I hails from Byron Bay Australia and hopped on the scene in early 2018. After quitting her day job, she lived out of her van for a year and tried her hand at busking. Fast forward about a year, her smash single “Dance Monkey” hit #1 on Pandora’s Predictions chart and Shazam, is certified 3x platinum in Australia and let’s just say, she puts on an amazing live show.
Tyla Yaweh: There’s no denying Tyla Yaweh’s star appeal. His talent, high energy and charisma caught the attention of Post Malone and Dre London causing the duo to sign Yaweh to their label London Entertainment. The Florida rapper has been tearing up the festival stage circuit, performing everywhere from Rolling Loud to SXSW, as well as Post Malone’s European Tour.
Yemi Alade: Yemi Alade has been one of the biggest female voices in Africa since breaking out in 2013, but over the last year she’s made some amazing inroads into the US mainstream via her work on the Lion King soundtrack and her collaboration with Rick Ross. As her male counterparts continue to dominate the conversation around Afropop, Yemi has quietly positioned herself as one of the most consistent artists to come out of the continent and a true contender to solidify the Afro Pop crossover into the US.
SiriusXM and Pandora’s list of predictions are based on a combination of musical expertise, cultural knowledge, industry insights, and data. These 24 exciting artists are comprised of the SiriusXM’s Future Five and the Pandora 2020 Artists to Watch. Listen to the Pandora playlist highlighting their music HERE.