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Music review of 2012

December 2012

WHEN Jake Bugg’s debut album shot straight to the top of the chart in October, denying Leona Lewis, Mumford and Sons and others the coveted spot, it was the crowning glory on a year that has seen unprecedented success for homegrown musicians.
Even without Jake, there were more record deals, TV appearances, radio plays, award wins and national press than in any other year.
Among the names helping throw a spotlight on the city were Dog Is Dead, Natalie Duncan, Sam Beeton, Indiana, Harleighblu, Shide Boss and RAM1.
And then there was Jake, just 18 years old, scoring the first ever No. 1 album by a Nottingham musician or band.
Added to that, the Clifton boy toured the US and Europe with Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, made the cover of the NME, had relentless plays on Radio 1 and appeared on Later With Jools Holland. And he’ll be joining Emeli Sandé, Adam Ant and Paloma Faith for his annual New Year’s Eve Hootenanny on BBC 1.
He sold out the Rescue Rooms last month and has already sold out his Rock City show in February.
West Bridgford indie band Dog Is Dead released their major label debut album, All Our Favourite Stories, also in October, after which they embarked on a headline tour of the UK and picked up an Artrocker award. During the year they had numerous plays on Radio 1 and appeared at 25 festivals over the summer including T in the Park and Leeds and Reading.
Next year they’ll be venturing into Europe and the US.
Jake Bugg wasn’t the only Notts musician to appear on Later With Jools Holland this year. Natalie Duncan, who was raised in Lady Bay and The Meadows, made such an impressive debut on the show in November, that fellow guests, Muse, invited the 24-year-old jazz and soul singer to open for them at the iTunes Festival in London.
Her debut album, Devil In Me, received widespread acclaim, with the Sunday Times describing it as “one of the greatest debut albums of the year”.
In recent weeks she’s been hanging out with Dionne Warwick at the MOBOs and appearing on Terry Wogan’s Radio 2 show.
The station also aired self-released songs by folk pop musician Sam Beeton earlier in the year, with Graham Norton playing Under The Fence and The Storyteller, after which the 24-year-old from Carlton appeared on BBC 2’s The Review Show.
Natalie Duncan was just a guest at the MOBOs but reggae musician RAM1 was there to potentially pick up an award. 20-year-old Ramone Williams from Top Valley had been nominated in the Best Gospel Act category, although sadly he missed out this time.
But there was an award-win for Notts in October at the Asian Music Awards, where Shide Boss, 24, from Basford took the Best Newcomer gong.
And let’s not forget those locals hitting the charts as part of pop groups, such as Jay McGuiness corr from The Wanted.
The Farndon singer, 22, a graduate of the MADD school in Carlton, was at the Capital FM Arena with the group as part of a sell-out UK tour in February, after which they cracked the US with their single Glad You Came reaching No. 3 in the chart.
Their EP, The Wanted, hit the top ten in the US and Canada.
Joel Peat, the 20-year-old Ravenshead guitarist with pop/rock quartet Lawson, saw their debut album, Chapman Square, hit the Top 5.
And 2013 is looking promising for two of our ladies. In recent weeks Indiana, a 25-year-old from Long Eaton, who was an unknown name until her first gig in April, has signed to Sony, while 20-year-old city-based soul singer Harleighblu, was snapped up by Brighton-based independent label TruThoughts.

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