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Youth Music announces first recipients of its NextGen Fund

37 young people setting out on careers in music have been awarded up to £2,500 to help them develop their careers thanks to New Music, Tik Tok and the People’s Postcode Lottery.

The fund offers the opportunity for young people, whatever their circumstances, to fulfil musical ambitions and complete projects, whether it be producing, singing, rapping, mixing or marketing. The successful applicants in the first round include one third disabled, almost a quarter currently unemployed and 68% people who have never received funding before.

Among them are Lil Trubz, the founder of Tracks on Tap, who applied for the funding to help him complete an album of recordings by his platform’s community. Scotland-based Brodie will be using his funding to employ professional recording, mixing and mastering services to create an EP of his poetic, story-telling pop.

Rimzi, the Birmingham-born multi-media artist, will create an EP of electronic music based on her South Asian and Sufi heritage.

On receiving the award, she said, ‘I wouldn’t have had the confidence, space or resources to release my first project without this opportunity, or to even see that dream as a tangible possibility. This whole process welcomes and nurtures young people who have never had experience of writing funding bids before, rather than excluding us because we lack that experience. I’m grateful for the chance now to intentionally carve out creative space for my work, whilst being accountable to a timeline. These skills are crucial as a young artist.’

320 young artists and aspiring music professionals have applied for the funding from across the UK since the project opened in June this year. The winning applicants were selected by a panel of industry experts along with representatives from Youth Music and Tik Tok.

Elijah, the Project Lead on Youth Music NextGen Fund, said, ‘Equalising opportunity in the music industries starts with investing directly in those who often overlooked. The first group of Youth Music NextGen Fund recipients have the talent, exciting ideas, and energy needed to take on the future of creative work. We can’t wait to see their projects come to life.’

The full list of recipients can be found here: https://youthmusic.org.uk/nextgen-fund-round-one-recipients.

Further funding, mentoring and support opportunities from the national charity Youth Music can be found on its website at www.youthmusic.org.uk.

Photo: Award recipient JSMINE SOPHIA, a self-taught singer, songwriter, producer and visual artist based in London