R&B artists you should follow in 2024

Music news, Rap

How does rhythm and blues—one of music’s most soulful genres—continue to reinvent itself year after year? In 2024, the quest for new, authentic talent that can enrich your playlist with compelling vocals and rich, smooth rhythms remains ever-present. This genre, celebrated for its emotional depth and distinctive beats, welcomes a vanguard of artists who are not only defining new trends but also molding the R&B soundscape as we know it.

Who are these vanguards crafting tomorrow’s hits? Join us as we spotlight the new faces in R&B, the voices promising to bring a fresh dynamic to your favorite tunes. Your next musical obsession could be among them.

Elmiene

For those seeking new melodies brimming with soul, Elmiene is a name to remember. This budding R&B talent from Oxford is quickly climbing the ranks in the music scene. His early love for the soul rang true as he immersed himself in the histories of his favorite artists. This passion, coupled with strategic music promotion inside the digital realm, propelled him to online stardom through a D’Angelo cover

Elmiene’s commitment didn’t go unnoticed; industry giants like Missy Elliot, Pharrell Williams, and Questlove soon became familiar with his work. The compelling track ‘Golden,’ drawn from a poem about his Sudanese grandmother, garnered the spotlight when Virgil Abloh selected it for his culminating fashion show. Recognition wasn’t solely from industry professionals – Elmiene also garnered a fifth place in BBC Radio 1’s Sound Of 2024, highlighting potential game-changers in the music industry.

Following his initial burst of fame, Elmiene took a step back to fine-tune his craft. He returned with two EPs and collaborations with celebrated artists such as Stormzy, Timbaland, and Justin Timberlake. Elmiene’s story is not just inspiring; it firmly places him as an artist you need to pay attention to in the year ahead.

Tash

In your R&B artist discovery journey, don’t miss the distinctive talents of Australian singer-songwriter Tash Sultana. Hailing from Melbourne, Tash began playing the guitar gifted by their grandfather, a decision that would ultimately lead to international acclaim. Their 2016 breakout single ‘Jungle’ grabbed global attention, and their ensuing EP ‘Notion’ solidified Tash’s place in the music sphere.

With a riveting vocal reach that extends across five octaves and proficiency in various instruments, Tash’s versatility is undeniable. Their 2018 album ‘Flow State’ scaled the second spot on the ARIA Albums Chart and accelerated their trajectory. Accolades followed, with nominations for prestigious honors like the APRA Awards and the Environmental Music Prize in 2023.

Embracing a gender-fluid identity and using they/them pronouns, Tash is a vocal advocate for the LGBTQ+ community. Their singular sound and compelling personal story make them a vital addition to your 2024 R&B collection. Tash’s dedication to genuine expression is a powerful force sculpting their continued rise to success. Make a note to include Tash Sultana in your music library—the experience promises to be enriching.

Yoko Gold

As you keep an ear out for the next R&B hit-makers, turn your attention to Yoko Gold from Toronto. His collaboration with Tory Lanez is just the tip of the iceberg. With his debut single ‘Limbo’ launched on August 11, 2023, Yoko Gold invites us into his narrative of struggle through a mesmerizingly raw and ethereal sound that provides a hypnotic escape.

Yoko Gold’s music is an experience—a tapestry of haunting melodies and poignant words. His debut is a testament to his ability to elicit deep emotions and create a full-bodied auditory experience. ‘Limbo’ is the perfect gateway to his music that leaves listeners eager for more.

As he gains traction on the world stage, Yoko Gold’s name is one to remember. His ascent in the industry is marked by a growing recognition of his potential. By connecting with him on Instagram and Facebook, you can follow his burgeoning career and catch all his new music and initiatives.

R&B’s ever-changing soundscape now includes Yoko Gold, an essential artist for the year 2024. Include him on your playlist and witness his evolution as a cornerstone of this dynamic genre.

Jvck James

Keep your eyes on Jvck James, a force in the UK’s R&B with his deep, soul-infused vocals and frank songwriting. Since his first release, Jvck James has captured the spotlight, including a distinguished performance on Colors. Over five years, he’s graced the scene with his introductory EP and impressive follow-ups. Drawing from greats like D’Angelo and Lauryn Hill, his homage to old-school R&B resonates through his music.

James doesn’t restrict his candor to songwriting. He’s vocal on social media, challenging institutions like the MOBO Awards to acknowledge R&B artists more earnestly. His genuineness has won him fans worldwide and a reputation for sold-out performances. His upbringing in a Jamaican family in East London, with gospel music as a backdrop, shines in his artistry.

Looking ahead, James is not resting on his laurels. Following his Soho Rising tour’s success in North America, he’s already envisioning his next steps. As the UK R&B landscape flourishes, it’s artists like Jvck James, with their heartfelt lyrics and eclectic sound, who are leading its evolution. Watch this space—Jvck James is on the rise.

Sam Wills

As we traverse the UK R&B tapestry, another name stands out: Sam Wills. This singer, songwriter, and producer is carving his niche with an integration of classic soul and hip-hop. His debut Anthology ‘Breathe,’ launched in June 2021, boasts over 15 million streams, testifying to his growing influence.

Wills’ prowess transcends the streams; he is also an electrifying live act. Having opened for Jamie Cullum and Jordan Rakei, he’s gearing up for what promises to be an unforgettable night at London’s Jazz Cafe in Camden.

Outside the spotlight, Wills is a gifted songwriter and producer, collaborating with Jordan Rakei, Tom Misch, and Disclosure. His songwriting skills shone brightly in Jorja Smith’s widely praised single ‘Where Did I Go?’ His efforts haven’t gone unnoticed, earning him a Grammy nomination for his contributions to Lucky Daye’s album.

With recognition mounting and a passionate fan following, Sam Wills is marked as one of the brightest stars in the UK’s soul/R&B firmament. Don’t miss the chance to add this extraordinary talent to your 2024 playlist.

Staff

Written by

Christopher Johnson

Christopher Johnson is a dedicated writer and key contributor to the WECB website, Emerson College's student-run radio station. Passionate about music, radio communication, and journalism, Christopher pursues his craft with a blend of meticulous research and creative flair. His writings on the site cover an array of subjects, from music reviews and artist interviews to event updates and industry news. As an active member of the Emerson College community, Christopher is not only a writer but also an advocate for student involvement, using his work to foster increased engagement and enthusiasm within the school's radio and broadcasting culture. Through his consistent and high-quality outputs, Christopher Johnson helps shape the voice and identity of WECB, truly embodying its motto of being an inclusive, diverse, and enthusiastic music community.