It is Foundry’s biggest class to date, featuring indie talent spanning genres and continents.
Created in 2015, Foundry is YouTube’s incubator for independent music, supporting indie artists at all stages of their careers through annual artist development classes and ongoing release support campaigns.
To date, Foundry programmes have supported 250 independent artists, with alumni including Arlo Parks, Beabadoobee, Dave, Dua Lipa, Clairo, Enney, Eladio Carrion, Girl In Red, Gunna, Japanese Breakfast, Kenny Beats, Natanael Cano, Omar Apollo, Rema, Rina Sawayama, Rosalia, Saba, Snail Mail, Tems, Tenille Arts, Tokischa and many more.
Naomi Zeichner, YouTube artist partnerships lead, said: “It’s no small task to be an artist in 2022, working to find stability, fulfilment, and fans who get it. Foundry celebrates the courage of independent artists and the communities that surround them. Our global team is lucky to be their champion and reduce barriers on their journey, every step of the way.”
Nur Ozdamar, lead, artist and label development EMEA, YouTube, said: "Independent artists are the backbone of music culture and I am elated that we get to work with some of the brightest emerging stars in the business through Foundry in EMEA. The programme is designed to support artists at various stages in their career so they can focus on what they do best: making powerful music that tells their stories about everything from belonging and love, to representation and dance.”
The three UK acts this year have reacted to their selection for the Foundry programme.
Obongjayar: “Foundry allows me to keep creating and to keep bringing my ideas to life. It opens me up to a wider audience, so thank you!”
TSHA: “To be an independent artist you have to take on many roles; not just being the artist itself but being the head of your own creative direction and staying on top of everything on the business side too. Learning to say no to things, knowing to trust your own intuition as an artist. I would define success as an independent artist as having the ability to make and sustain a living, staying true to yourself and maintaining your artistic integrity.”
French The Kid: “Being free to release what I want and when I want. Not being restricted in any way. I think success for me as an independent artist is what I am currently living in. Making money helps of course. But just knowing that my music is being heard around the world through what we created and worked on is success.”
The Foundry Class of 2022 artists represent 15 countries with artists working across genres such as country, Afropop, soul, latin, hip-hop and more.
The full list is below:
Amari’ Noelle (US)
Ashley Cooke (US)
Black Sherif (SSA)
Danielle Ponder (US)
French The Kid (UK)
Genesis Owusu (AUS)
Haru Nemuri (JP)
Kader Diaby 4Real (FR)
Magdalena Bay (US)
Noor Chahal (IN)
Roxane Bruneau (CAN)
Snow Tha Product (US)
Sudan Archives (US)
Yoss Bones (MX)