UD & TRENCH Present...
The Incubator Class Of 2024! 🔥

TRENCH have teamed up with UD as the official media partner for their 2024 Incubator Programme. Following a successful pilot in 2023, the initiative returns this year with the support of PPL, as the two organisations continue their work to drive positive change in equity and diversity across the music industry.

With over 100 artists applying to this year’s Incubator Programme, looking to secure a six-month talent and career development opportunity, the competitive four-stage selection process saw a panel of tastemakers, including Joseph ‘JP’ Patterson (Founder, TRENCH / EIC, Complex UK) and Chantelle Fiddy (UD / TRENCH) vote for their favourite acts which span a range of genres, from grime, rap and R&B to drill, hip-hop and jazz.

Participants will receive invaluable support, including access to financial investment and expert guidance on music law, publishing, distribution, live music and more from leading industry professionals. Free studio time, hot desking facilities and personalised mentoring and coaching are also provided.

Without further ado, meet the 10 exceptional independent artists that make up the Incubator 2024 cohort…

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IZZY WITHERS

Who are you?

I’m Izzy, an 18-year-old singer-songwriter from London.

How would you describe your sound?

Soulful, fun, warm and new. My music is similar to artists like Olivia Dean, Joy Crookes, Loyle Carner, Kamal, Raye, Corrine Bailey Rae or Lily Allen.

Fave song you’ve made?

My favourite song I have ever written is called “Solve”, and it’s about growing up and realising no one has it all figured out and everyone’s just learning as they go.

Career highlight to date?

It has probably been any time I’ve performed live and people have sung the words of my songs back to me, especially because none of my music is out yet. It makes me so emotional since I came up with this music in my head.

Congrats for making it onto the 2024 Incubator Programme. What are you looking forward to the most?

The thing I’m looking forward to the most is working with new people, meeting other young creatives and creating really good music together. I’m excited to use the facilities and properly focus on my music, sound and creativity, too.

What’s next for you?

My debut single is in the works now, so I am super excited to eventually get that out.

MARACHÉ

Who are you?

I’m MARACHÉ and I make Afro-fusion, soul and alternative music.

How would you describe your sound?

I grew up on soul musicians like Aretha Franklin and Céline Dion, but I’m also very influenced by my Nigerian heritage and listen to Burna Boy, Tiwa Savage and modern R&B artists like Tems and Jorja.

Fave song you’ve made?

“Drummer Boy” is a very good song. I made it recently and I’m really excited to release it. It’s more R&B and I love how you can hear the early Beyoncé influence but it still has the Afro drums.

Whats your career highlight to date?

I think everything is an achievement because having the courage and confidence to do what I love is what I’m proud of because I have been making music for a while.

Congrats for making it onto the 2024 Incubator Programme. What are you looking forward to the most?

I can’t wait to work with other creatives and have the space to make music with other artists.

What’s next for you?

I have a few releases and hopefully an EP before the end of the year. I also started producing and made a home studio during lockdown. Randomly, I’ve been making house music a lot, even though I don’t sing it. I feel like people don’t realise how close Afro and house music are to each other. Watch this space!

J2

Who are you?

My name is J2 and I’m a musician from East London. I rap and do bare other things. Im also part of DA COMMUNITY, which is a fat collective. In everything I do, I’m surrounded by my peers.

How would you describe your sound?

I love making garage and neo-grime, which is fast-paced and high energy. I grew up listening to Mac Miller and Odd Future, who are really characterful and outspoken with lots of energy. The music I make now isnt really similar, but its shaped my perspective on how to do things. I also listen to a lot of BBK, Big Zuu and Cadet, especially for his storytelling… I just write down words with no beat and make them rhyme which is basically poetry that turned into writing for music.

Fave song you’ve made?

It’s unreleased and called “Somehow” and it’s about me finally coming to terms with all the shit around me and how you’re not defined by how you see yourself on a bad day.

Whats your career highlight to date?

Selling out The Colour Factory with DA COMMUNITY twice was lit, and performing for UD x Timberland too.

Congrats for making it onto the 2024 Incubator Programme. What are you looking forward to the most?

Finding out the things I don’t know through networking. Creatively, I can use the space too. Also gaining some connections because it may not be about what you do, but who you know.

What’s next for you?

This year, it’s all about slapping it all out! You never know what could happen.

TAYOLOXS

Who are you?

I’m a multi-genre producer from South London, born in Croydon.

How would you describe your sound?

I do lots of different genres, like trap, drill, jungle, and Ive also created my own sound which is a blend of house and my own drums that I picked up when I was learning hood trap. My sound is very innovative.

Fave song you’ve made?

I’d say my drill track “Malissa”, which is actually trending on TikTok right now. And from my own style, it’s probably “Plow”, which is a jerk beat. I’d also say jungle is my favourite type of music to make because it gets you out of your seat.

What’s your career highlight to date?

When Zuko performed on one of my beats at Wireless last year it was a major thing for me. Also, when my track “Black Keys 2” blew up… I was just messing about and had a laid-back approach but it’s the things you mess about with that blow up more.

Congrats for making it onto the 2024 Incubator Programme. What are you looking forward to the most?

Definitely collaborating with people. I’ve noticed a lot of people on the course are more singers and make R&B and I’ve never actually made R&B, so that’s something I’m willing to learn to help people on the course. Learning about the music business, too, especially the do’s and don’ts.

What’s next for you?

I have a high demand for chill-drill beats. I kind of stopped around 2022 but I feel like I’m going to get back into it. I’ll also be working on more trap music, the kind you hear Fimi, Len and Ciel on.

OLYMPIA VITALIS

Who are you?

I’m Olympia Vitalis, a soul singer from West London.

How would you describe your sound?

I’m very much influenced by the singers from the Motown era, like Aretha Franklin, Leon Ware and Marvin Gaye. Amy Winehouse is obviously a big inspiration too. My sound is super-honest and driven by gospel, as I was in a gospel choir for seven years. I like to write about more intense, uncomfortable topics like socio-political issues and what it’s like being a woman, a mixed-race woman, rather than love.

Fave song you’ve made?

Probably “Mardy”, which is on a bit of a trip-hop vibe. It’s about being a woman experiencing unwanted physical attention from men.

What’s your career highlight to date?

I just came off a support tour for Kiefer, who is an LA-based jazz pianist. That was a very cool experience and a good way to start 2024.

Congrats for making it onto the 2024 Incubator Programme. What are you looking forward to the most?

Meeting everyone and working with all these different artists who all have different energies and sounds. Also, soul singers are used in a lot of garage, house and breakbeat, so I’d love to get into that.

What’s next for you?

I’m doing Mahalia Presents in April, which I’m really excited for. It’s kind of a bucket list moment for myself.

SKEE

Who are you?

My name is Skee and I’m a 19-year-old producer and artist from South London.

How would you describe your sound?

UK rap but more alternative and underground. I’ve dabbled in every genre, but at the moment, a lot of my music has a lot of jazz undertones. I include a lot of live instruments like trumpets and saxophone in my music too. I rap a lot about what’s going on in my life, like the dreams I’m chasing or relationship problems.

Fave song you’ve made?

It’s unreleased but it’s called “Cartier Frames”, which has a lot of storytelling and a Pharrell vibe. It’s a personal song I made for Valentine’s Day but it didn’t drop then.

What’s your career highlight to date?

I had my first headline show in early August with my band, Wavy Collective, and we sold out Notting Hill Arts Club, so there were around 200 people at the show.

Congrats for making it onto the 2024 Incubator Programme. What are you looking fwd to the most?

Collaborating with other artists and leaving the programme with a song or a sound that I have never tried before. I feel like there’s a lot of people I can work with there as well.

What’s next for you?

I’m working on two EPs and trying to make my music more focused and conceptual so I’m looking forward to dropping them both this year. I also got booked for We Out Here Festival and The Great Escape, which is sick.

ALLYSON

Who are you?

My name is Allyson, and I’m a 21-year-old singer from South-East London.

How would you describe your sound?

I make neo-soul and R&B and I’m really inspired by artists like Yebba, Shae Universe and Jazmine Sullivan because their performances are always different from their recorded tracks. They love using live instruments in their music, and so do I.

Fave song you’ve made?

“My Dear”, which is a neo-soul-jazz track. The beat is by a producer from LA, which I found on TikTok; I didn’t finish it for a while so I ended up freestyling. I love how it was made and how it sounds.

What’s your career highlight to date?

Definitely performing at the Jazz Cafe last month, which was crazy because so many big people like Amy Winehouse and Jazmine Sullivan have performed there. I was doing backing vocals for my friend at Mahalia Presents and I love Mahalia; she’s so lovely.

Congrats for making it onto the 2024 Incubator Programme. What are you looking forward to the most?

Finally having the space to make music with the people I know on this programme and connect with people I have never met before.

What’s next for you?

I have never put a music video out so it would be nice to put one out because I have so many ideas and a vision for them. I love dancing so much and want to include choreo in my music videos. Funnily enough, my mum always thought I would be a dancer.

ZUKO ROSEMEID

Who are you?

My name is Zuko Rosemeid. I’m 22 years old, from South-East London, and I do alternative rap.

How would you describe your sound?

My music is very cinematic and it’s very London. A lot of people take really American ideas but I try to stick to the UK.

Fave song you’ve made?

One is the intro to my mixtape, which isn’t out yet, but I’m very proud of the lyrical content. “Night Tube” is also a song I’m really proud of because I made it with one of my very close friends and it’s done a lot for my career.

What’s your career highlight to date?

I performed at Wireless last year and when I did that I was pretty shocked.

Congrats for making it onto the 2024 Incubator Programme. What are you looking forward to the most?

Working with everyone here! I need to get into collaborating more and this is an amazing group of people, so it would be good to see what everyone has to offer. I’m working with Allyson right now, and I’ve already worked with Tayo.

What’s next for you?

I have something coming out in July: my mixtape! I’m also working a lot with Dot Wav Not Wave, so expect a lot from that and also the NEVRRATED collective, which I’m a member of and has a lot of incredible artists in it.

CHARLOTTE DOWSSON

Who are you?

I’m Charlotte Dowsson, a singer-songwriter from London.

How would you describe your sound?

I make R&B but with influence from jazz and neo-soul. I’m really inspired by Sade, Victoria Monet, Brent Faiyaz and Aaliyah. I would say my sound is a nod to ’90s and ’00s R&B with some live instrumentation. I usually write my songs on guitar and have been writing since I was 16.

Fave song you’ve made?

“Meadows Of Angels” is coming out this year, which I’m really excited for because it’s a really cute, romantic, Frank Ocean vibe. Another song I am really proud of is called “Intimate”, which is really contemporary R&B but with some saxophone and flutes.

Whats your career highlight to date?

Recording at Metropolis Studios last year was really fun. So many amazing people have worked there; Kendrick Lamar, Adele and RAYE have had a live session there too.

Congrats for making it onto the 2024 Incubator Programme. What are you looking forward to the most?

I’m really excited to be around like-minded and up-and-coming artists. The writing camp should be really fun, too, because I love to write songs and connect with new people.

What’s next for you?

“Intimate” is coming out and we’re going to shoot a video which I’m really excited for. I can’t wait to play The Great Escape festival later this year as well. That should be fun!

SKYE

Who are you?

I’m a 21-year-old singer-songwriter based in West London.

How would you describe your sound?

My sound is quite mellow, chill and soulful, but I also do a lot of funky, downbeat neo-soul. I love layering harmonies and dabbling between the two sounds and adding reverb to create an ethereal effect.

Fave song you’ve made?

I haven’t released it yet but it’s called “Drowning”. I layered a lot of harmonies that bounce off each other to give the effect of drowning or coming to terms with all the emotions you’re feeling.

Whats your career highlight to date?

In the summer, I did a stage at All Points East for the midweek artists section and I was on the same stage as Erykah Badu and Kehlani a week after they performed, which was really amazing.

Congrats for making it onto the 2024 Incubator Programme. What are you looking forward to the most?

I’m looking forward to being consistent this year and pushing myself out of my comfort zone to release more music.

What’s next for you?

I’ll be making sure that people can actually hear what I’m doing and not allow my music to collect dust. I want continuous releases and to shoot a music video, too, as I’ve never done one before.

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You can catch the Incubator 2024 cohort at The Great Escape. UD’s Live Showcase (with PPL) will be at DUST, 77 East St, Brighton BN1 1NF, on May 16th from midday - 4pm. For more info, head here.


Posted on April 30, 2024