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BEN WINSTON TALKS GRAMMYS
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Fearless forecast, with caveats (2/3a)
YOUR HANDY GRAMMY-WEEK GUIDE
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HIP-HOP AT 50
The astonishing first half-century of a world-rocking genre.
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Blighty Beat
U.K. ACT TO WATCH: SAM RYDER (WMG)
12/7/22

Singer-songwriter Sam Ryder earned the U.K. a long-awaited laurel at Eurovision earlier this year. He came in second after performing “Space Man”—the U.K.’s highest placing in the contest since 1998. Nick Burgess, co-President of Ryder’s label, Parlophone, originally planned to release the track, which was written with Amy Wadge and Max Wolfgang, in March 2022, but the Eurovision opportunity changed their plans. “We really believed that Sam was the perfect artist for this competition,” he says. “We knew he had the personality, the voice and the right song to make a huge impression. And we weren’t wrong!”

Burgess signed Ryder after hearing a clip of one of his TikTok videos. “I noticed not only was his audience engagement off the scale, but he had this incredible voice and real star quality,” he says. “There was something very relaxed and confident about his approach—the almost normalizing of himself by singing like a rock god and then saying something amusing that was a bit mundane, which really emphasized how effortless singing was for him.”

Burgess continues: “Sam has the confidence and ambition to impress and engage everywhere he goes. Everyone loves him. He has all the qualities of an artist: a strong visual identity, an authentic message of joy, hope and positivity, and, most importantly, a world-class and unique vocal. He’s also an incredible human being.”

“Space Man” hit #2 on the U.K.’s Official Singles Chart in May and was followed by “Somebody” and latest release “All the Way Over.” Ryder has also collaborated with Sigala and David Guetta this year for “Living Without You.” His debut album, Nothing but Space, Man, will arrive on 12/9. It’s being supported by a big U.K. and European tour, as well as some key TV spots. “We’re looking forward to Sam building on his early success to become a real breakout British star,” Burgess concludes.

STATS

270m global audio streams

50k live tickets sold

13.7m TikTok, 4m Instagram, 93k Twitter and 2.4m Facebook followers

TEAM

Management: David May

Label: Ina Rasinger, Parlophone

Live: Ryan Penty, Wasserman

Publishing: Colette Goodfellow, UMPG