Youth Music has revealed the 37 recipients of its Youth Music NextGen Fund, supported by TikTok and People's Postcode Lottery.
Designed to assist creatives lacking the finance and opportunity to get their artistry underway, recipients will each receive up to £2,500 to launch a project, idea or business.
The Youth Music NextGen Fund will enable young people, whatever their background, to take steps to develop their careers.
Of those receiving funding, 32% identify as Disabled, 68% have never received funding before, 24% are currently freelance, and 22% are not in employment.
Recipients who will benefit from The Youth Music NextGen Fund include:
· Rapper and events producer, Lil Trubz, who founded the up-and-coming music platform Tracks On Tap (TOT) in 2018. Since then, Lil Trubz has featured on Stormzy's #WickedSkengCypher. Using Youth Music’s NextGen funding, Trubz will produce and engineer his first album featuring artists from the ever-growing TOT community
· Born in Harare, Zimbabwe, 23-year-old Sizwe ‘SZWÉ’ Chitiyo (pictured), who is now based in South Wales, will create a follow up to his bedroom album SZWE Part 1, featuring more collaborations and music videos
· Based in Scotland, Brodie will professionally record his debut EP, using the funding to work with an experienced mixing and mastering engineer, and support his ambitions to launch a full-time career as an independent artist
· Born in Birmingham to Pakistani migrant parents, Rizmi is a DJ, producer, vocalist and painter. Rizmi's project will see the creation of an EP, incorporating her South Asian and Sufi heritage with electronic machine music.
Elijah, project lead – Youth Music NextGen Fund, said: “Equalising opportunity in the music industries starts with investing directly in those who are often overlooked. The first group of Youth Music NextGen Fund recipients have the talent, exciting ideas, and energy needed to take on the future of creative work. We can’t wait to see their projects come to life.”
Youth Music NextGen Fund recipient, Rimzi, said: “I wouldn’t have had the confidence, space or resources to release my first project without this opportunity, or to even see that dream as a tangible possibility. This whole process welcomes and nurtures young people who have never had experience of writing funding bids before, rather than excluding us because we lack that experience. I’m grateful for the chance now to intentionally carve out creative space for my work, whilst being accountable to a timeline. These skills are crucial as a young artist.”
Matthew Harris, head of policy programmes Europe, said: “Music is a central part of TikTok and as a partner to the industry we want to give those starting out their careers the support they need to achieve their dreams. The past 18 months have been incredibly hard on the music sector, but the 37 Youth Music NextGen Fund recipients have overwhelmed us not just with their talent, but their drive and ambition. We’re delighted to able to support the next generation of artists and look forward to seeing these dreams become a reality.”
Applications opened in June 2021 and to date 320 young artists and creative entrepreneurs have applied from across the UK. Recipients were selected by a Youth Music and TikTok judging panel, as well as industry experts.
The full list of recipients is here.