Sunday 29 November 2020

Ones to Watch 2021 #5 Olivia Dean


The next artist on the Breaking More Waves Ones to Watch list for 2021 is Olivia Dean. A UK soul artist from Walthamstow, East London, she’s a Brit-School graduate who has been slow trickling a series of gorgeous songs out online over the last couple of years.

Her music sounds effortless, which could be taken as a criticism (as if no effort was put into it) but that’s not what I mean. For Olivia’s sound is full of warmth and a caressing smoothness as if it just comes naturally. It’s pop, but it’s grown up sophisticated pop. Take a listen to October release Echo for a perfect example of this. You can hear references to many classic artists; she’s talked of love and influences such as Al Green, Amy Winehouse, Aretha Franklin and Carole King, but there’s a distinctly modern sound to the production of her music as well. The video for another track The Hardest Part references Diana Ross & The Supremes. 

Having already joined Rudimental when they headlined V Festival in 2017 to sing on one of their songs, Olivia has already had a taste of the big stage spotlight; but I can imagine her elegant sound fitting equally at home in a small club. Wherever she eventually plays in 2021 and beyond, it’s highly likely that Olivia Dean will be melting hearts.

Olivia Dean - Echo

Olivia Dean - The Hardest Part


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