It has been a huge year for Live Nation’s game-changing live music discovery series ONES TO WATCH, when it comes to the unearthing of fantastic Australian talent. And the momentum isn’t stopping as 2023 rolls into its second half, with the announcement of a brand new instalment of the series in Meanjin/Brisbane, taking place during BIGSOUND this September 6.
Taking place during the Australian music industry’s largest conference and showcase festival, Live Nation brings its own flavour to BIGSOUND, with ONES TO WATCH Backed By VODAFONE, providing the massive stage at the Fortitude Music Hall as a platform for their next exciting trio of artists to demonstrate why they are going to be the next ones to watch.
Selected to perform at September’s ONES TO WATCH Backed By VODAFONE event is Sydney pop artist Ūla, Gold Coast indie-pop performer Bella Amor, and Melbourne pop songwriter Keenan Te. All three represent unique perspectives and takes on pop music; all three are refreshing entries to the Australian music landscape — providing stage presence and musical skill that has Live Nation excited about the careers that lay ahead.
Ūla has built a strong following of over 1.6 million already, a natural performer and multi-instrumentalist who has become a name the industry is already turning their heads for, courtesy of music that has racked up over 13.5 million streams to date. Having supported the likes of Amy Shark, The Veronicas and Tyne-James Organ, Ūla’s performance chops have been fast developing, as her debut EP project continues to be refined and prepared to be unleashed.
Hailing from the Gold Coast, Bella Amor’s vocals and songwriting style have been intriguing and exciting industry and fans alike since her track ‘Beauty’ began turning heads in 2020. Inspired by the soulful and rich tones permeating music by the likes of Matt Corby and YEBBA, Bella Amor brings this depth together with her sharp and witty perspective of young adulthood. Singles released in recent years, such as 2022’s ‘can’t get laid’, ‘all my friends are high’ and 2023’s ‘sentimental’ reflect Bella’s artistic talent; music anchored by emotional explorations and honest observations on life.
Keenan has been musical from a young age, developing his songwriting skills out of his Melbourne bedroom, though having learned guitar and piano as a child. Debuting videos of himself performing to TikTok in 2020, Keenan’s profile was quick to rise, amassing over 1.7 million followers – his videos accruing over 200 million views. Capturing the attention of international superstars including Meghan Trainor, Addison Rae, Dan + Shay and more in the last few years, Keenan’s original music – including 2021’s ‘Dependent’ – has made him a global name. With over 70 million streams worldwide, Keenan has continued to flesh out his own unique songwriting influences in new music, making the projects he has on the near horizon exciting to anticipate.
Hosted by Tait McGregor, this ONES TO WATCH Backed By VODAFONE event will see one of the country’s best content creators and music journalists return to facilitate the night. A diehard Australian music champion and fan, McGregor previously hosted Eora/Sydney’s ONES TO WATCH event earlier this year, bringing natural charm and enthusiasm to the role – making her a natural choice for the Meanjin/Brisbane edition.
Having curated the last three ONES TO WATCH showcases, Live Nation promoter Paul Lynch is again excited for the latest installment, noting “After last year’s successful showcase, key members of the music industry are already flagging Ones To Watch as a must-see event at BIGSOUND this year. Ūla, Keenen Te & Bella Amor are three artists that we have had our eye on for a while now and are very excited to present such a talented line up, to key industry forces at BIGSOUND.”
With successful events taking place in Naarm/Melbourne and Eora/Sydney already spotlighting the incredible talents of artists including Lola Scott, STUMPS, Sam McGovern, PANIA, Mitch Santiago and BOY SODA, the ONES TO WATCH series has become an in-demand event within the Australian industry.
Invite only, ONES TO WATCH Backed By VODAFONE gathers an audience of key industry buyers and professionals together to witness these talented individuals perform, but ultimately, the event is an opportunity for the artists to gain meaningful industry pathways and connections.
And as continued investment into these emerging artists’ careers, Live Nation will be contributing $10,000 to each participating performer to go towards Live Nation-curated touring activity. Including, but not limited to, showcases and club shows, this financial boost provides additional support from Live Nation to these artists, ensuring that the momentum ONES TO WATCH Backed By VODAFONE can help generate, will keep building.
“For the second year running, we proudly take our Ones To Watch showcase to BIGSOUND. The program is a huge priority for us – we get to spotlight the immense talent of these acts to the industry while providing exciting development and touring opportunities, and through leveraging our global network we can connect Ones To Watch artists with fans worldwide.”
ROGER FIELD, PRESIDENT OF LIVE NATION ASIA PACIFIC
Since its establishment in North America, the ONES TO WATCH series has been able to support and promote artists such as Dua Lipa, Olivia Rodrigo and Halsey early in their careers. So far in Australia, ONES TO WATCH has platformed artists including Forest Claudette, Teenage Joans, Carla Wehbe, ZPLUTO, WIIGZ, Hoodzy, East AV3, Colourblind and Saint Lane at events around the country.