Ray BLK named winner of BBC Music Sound of 2017

The 22-year-old R&B singer-songwriter has been influenced by the likes of Missy Elliot

Roisin O'Connor
Friday 06 January 2017 11:30
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BBC Sound of 2017 winner Ray BLK
BBC Sound of 2017 winner Ray BLK

Ray BLK has been named the winner of the BBC Music Sound of 2017.

The 22-year-old R&B singer-songwriter hails from south London and has been influenced by the likes of Lauryn Hill, Missy Elliott and Timbaland.

The BLK in her name stands for Building Living Knowing, which she describes as her three main values.

She collaborated with grime superstar Stormzy on 'My Hood', an ode to their area in south London, which observed both its good and bad sides.

Ray BLK commented; “Winning the BBC sound of 2017 has to be the most surprising thing that's happened to me thus far.

"I feel so honoured to have topped the list this early in my career and join such an incredible alumni of winners. Thank you so much to the BBC and all the voters! I'm particularly proud to be a part of this year’s list as it’s full of so much talent, some of whom are independent artists like myself which I really hope inspires the next generation of artists.”

Rag 'n' Bone Man was announced as this year's runner up, followed by pop artist RAYE in third place, singer-songwriter Jorja Smith in fourth, and rapper Nadia Rose in fifth place.

Radio 1 DJ Huw Stephens said of Ray BLK: "Some artists have that magic about them. I've played everything I've heard from Ray BLK on my BBC Radio 1 show, and she played a stunning Radio 1 piano session for us.

"She has real, raw talent that cuts through so strongly. Ray BLK's own songs and collaborations with artists like Stormzy and Wretch 32 have left us all so excited about her as an artist. She is the real deal."

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