While America can certainly churn out the pop stars and the marquee name indie rockers, sometimes it’s fun to see what music is coming out of other countries. Here’s a look at five international artists or acts that you should know:
- Yuna: She grew up in Malaysia, and was first inspired by acts like No Doubt, The Cranberries, and Fiona Apple. At 19, while in law school, she picked up a guitar and began to write. She released her self-titled EP in Malaysia in 2008 and the single “Deeper Conversation” won the title of Best English Song at the 2009 AIM Awards, Malaysia’s national music awards. Yuna swept the ceremony, garnering Best Pop Song and Song of the Year for her Malay song, “Dan Sebenarnya”. Since then she’s been making waves in the US, after joining the FADER Label in 2010. In April she released her self-titled album, which nabbed attention from KCRW, KROQ, MTV2 and more. Check her out here: http://www.yunamusic.com
- Psy is a South Korean rapper, best known for his popular and humorous videos and stage performances. The music video for “Gangnam Style,” released in July, so far has garnered more 53 million views. In case you missed it, you can watch that video and more.
- Gotye: Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve likely heard of Wouter “Wally” De Backer, also known professionally by his stage name Gotye, a Belgian-Australian multi-instrumental musician and singer-songwriter. His song “Somebody That I Used to Know” from the album “Making Mirrors” has been one of the biggest hits of 2012.
- Lianne Le Havas is an English folk and soul singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. La Havas was born in London, England to a Greek father and Jamaican mother. Her official debut single, “Lost & Found” was released in the UK on April 30th and her debut album Is Your Love Big Enough? was released on July 9th in the UK on Warner Brothers. Check out her interesting sound here: http://www.liannelahavas.com
- Janka Nabay is a Sierra-Leonean musician who has been a major figure in Bubu Music, a traditionally Muslim music. He revived the fading musical treasure, made it big in his home country, escaped war and chaos there, came to the US and still managed to write and play songs while working at American fast-food fryers. Now, along with Brooklyn indie musicians The Bubu Gang , he’s releaed his first album-length release in the West, En Yay Sah (“I’m Scared”). Read about his interesting story.
Now, take a listen!
Tell us what you think! Do you have any favorite new intentional artists?
The SongCast Crew