In a result that surprised, er, nobody, Jessie J has been announced as the BBC’s Sound Of 2011 winner, backing up the Critics’ Choice award she’s already bagged which she’ll collect in February. Predictable? Yes. Likely to have hits? Well, she already has, so her annointment is no real surprise. Runners-up in the poll were James Blake and The Vaccines – the former a bleeding heart singer-songwriter; the latter a jingly-jangly quartet with a chainsaw edge to their sound…
The BBC’s Sound Of poll has been naming those acts it thinks are most likely to make for seven years now and it usually gets a few right with previous winners including Keane, Adele, Mika and Ellie Goulding. So it seems the stage is all set for Jessie J to become a huge star this year – well, she is from Essex and only good things come from there (your lovely author included). Jessie J has already had a hit with Do It Like A Dude and is inevitably being compared with Lady GaGa being that she’s a laydee what does pop – although her sound is more varied we reckon. At only 22, JJ is already an established songwriter too having penned tracks for JT, Alicia Keys and Chris Brown. She also had a hand in Miley Cyrus’s Party In The USA, but don’t let that put you off.
Meanwhile, runner-up James Blake poses very well for his photos doing a damn fine pout; and The Vaccines, who were only formed in June look mighty surprised to be here, their style of alt rock not an obvious choice in our eyes (and ears). Fifteen acts are on the shortlist, with Jamie Woon at No.4 and the hollow-voiced Claire Maguire placed at No.5.
Our tips from the shortlist? Well, you’d bet your house on Jessie J and also Claire Maguire could well be this year’s Rumer – a sleeper hit. Of the James’s – Blake and Woon – the latter has a rich, delicate sound that we love. The full shortlist is on the BBC’s website – from it, we also like The Naked & Famous and Nero.