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Artists to Watch: February

A lot of new artists have been breaking onto the music scene in recent years. These young artists show us the direction that music is headed, not only using inspiration from some of their favorite artists, but going places that other artists have never gone before. Introducing this month’s trifecta of up-and-coming artists in pop, rock, and indie music, we will be featuring black artists in every category to celebrate Black History Month. We will be delving into the angelic sounds of Kaleah Lee, the alternative R&B beats from Mermaid, and the soul-punk band Nightlife.

Starting off our features for the month on aliteralhigh note is Kaleah Lee. The young artist out of Vancouver has been blessing ears with her music since her first release, "Heavy Handed", in 2022. She has quickly started building up a following of indie alternative fans, and she has been grinding nonstop to release some of the most beautiful music, up to her latest release, "Rotting Fruit". And for any of you that are going to be running to your streaming platforms to give her a listen, she will be releasing a new song on Valentine's Day! So, make sure you pre-save "The Same" while you play her music on a constant loop.

Up next is the dynamic duo, Candace Quarrels and Brittany Campbell, in Mermaid. The two met on the Chicago production of Hamilton and went on to form Mermaid, a band infused with soul, R&B, alt-rock, jazz, punk, pop, and metal. Candace and Brittany have already started turning heads in the music industry, specifically from Brittany Howard of the Alabama Shakes for their song, "Find Me". But, their latest album, "Iridescence", is one for the books, held together by the band's transcendent harmonies and connection. If you've ever wondered what true friendship sounds like, check out Mermaid's discography.

Bringing the this month's features home is the band out of Baltimore, Nightlife. The soul-punk band has been making a name for themselves recently, opening for Issues on their farewell tour and releasing nothing but bangers since 2021. They released their most recent single, "face2face", in 2023, and we can only expect that they'll have big things coming in the years to come! If you haven't already, check out Nightlife on Spotify to find your new favorite band.

Music has been created and influenced by black artists worldwide for thousands of years, so being able to use an independent magazine as a platform to celebrate black artists during Black History Month and throughout the year is an incredible privilege. Up-and-coming artists are the future of music, and we are excited to see how they innovate within the music industry on their journeys!

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