Will The Four Be The Next Great Indie Artist Mine?

A lot of serious music fans tend to dismiss reality competition shows. They can certainly seem very commercial, and there are indications that they’re ultimately more scripted than they look on TV. That said, the talent on display is real, and a lot of the artists who get the opportunity to perform on these shows don’t have fan bases, radio play, or studio connections to their names. The Four is the latest of these shows, and we just got word that Fox would be renewing the series after the conclusion of a successful first season. So does this mean it’s going to be the next great indie artist mine, a la American Idol or The Voice?

If you saw promos for this show and dismissed it as something less than serious, you could be forgiven. For one thing, it seemed more or less like a ripoff of The Voice at first glance. There were to be four celebrity judges, various stages of competition between contestants, and even the staging vaguely resembled that of The Voice. Naturally the competition works a little bit differently, but The Four looked like (and is) more of an imitation than an original concept. Plus, it sort of has a silly name.

You might also have thought the show looked like a sort of vanity project for P. Diddy (or Sean Combs, or Diddy, or whatever it is these days). The iconic hip-hop artist is known for tackling different pursuits and staying in the public eye. He’s guest starred with younger rappers, appeared in films, and even gained a name for himself on the poker circuit. In fact, Diddy was asked to place the first bet on brand new blackjack tables in Atlantic City once – perhaps the perfect example of how his mere presence can enhance a project. Thus, you might wonder if The Four is more or less a money-making win-win between Fox and the rapper.

I know at least that these are some of the reasons I didn’t initially take The Four seriously. But having actually tuned in to some of the later episodes, I was hit with that same realization: that as commercial and promotional as these shows can look, they still showcase some extraordinary talent. As every struggling musician well understands, there are just more artists than there are career opportunities in this business, and these shows tend to highlight that fact. Fielding competitors from countrywide auditions and competitions, they tend to find countless people who are every bit as talented as the artists topping the charts.

I’ll issue a slight spoiler alert here in case you haven’t seen the finale yet or you’re interested in watching the whole first season. But if you want an idea of the kind of performer The Four is uncovering, take a look at this piece on the finale, and the artist who won it all. Her final performance of “Ain’t No Sunshine” is about as impressive as anything you can hear on a radio these days, and it’s wonderful to see another previously unknown artist get her moment.

Here’s hoping The Four continues to be a helpful tool for discovering artists and bringing them the success they deserve.

Gig Highlights: Keely & Co Exposure – Soul Sessions.

Last night I had the utmost pleasure of attending the Keely & Co exposure event at London’s Rich Mix. The event showcase Britain’s most promising stars.

Hip-hop upriser DELLY J definitely caught my attention, as he raise the roof with his track, Rock This Joint – Check it out!

This guy kept on rocking the joint, with his easy- cruising and inspirational track, Dream Big.

The night ended on a high with UK Voice contestant TREVOR FRANCIS. The super smooth performer was a backing singer for array of big acts including P.DIDDY, MARIAH CAREY, JLS, TINIE TEMPAH and GLADYS KNIGHT. Last night, he proved that he was more than a backing singer with his out-of-sight performance – don’t you dare leave this post until you listen to this guy!

If you’re feeling DELLY J performance, you can visit his SoundCloud page and check out his out-of-this-world tracks.

To find out more about Keely & Co, visit their website.

Star Song: Dear Molly – Carmireli

Carmireli - dear mollyHigh energy Dear Molly is the latest single by singer CARMIRELI. The New Yorker has been on the music scene since the age of 18, working with music producer Tony Gross the founder GFI Music and Castle Nine Entertainment.

Now she’s signed up with Max Gousse’s new record label Artistry Entertainment Worldwide. Gousse, an ex- Def Jam Recording executive who worked with BEYONCE and P.DIDDY, saw a host of You Tube videos of CARMIRELI covering mainstream songs. He liked what he heard and BANG – Dear Molly was born!  Since its release the electro-pop dance floor filler has received untold amount of attention across the internet.

Dear Molly is CARMIRELI’s first release single from Artistry Entertainment Worldwide. It got me going, so it’ll be interesting to hear her future stuff! Check it out!