I would, first of all, like to take a moment to thank Greta for suggesting I check Celeste out - I can't say I would ever have listened to her of my own volition if she hadn't recommended her for this segment - but thank God I did, because my life is changed forever.
Raised on Aretha Franklin and Ella Fitzgerald, American-born, Brighton-raised Celeste has been named both the BRIT Award Rising Star of 2020 and the number one breakthrough artist on the BBC Music Sound of 2020 list - and she's only 26.
Despite the acclaim that comes with winning awards, Celeste has said that awards were never the goal: "When I write music I never think about whether anybody wants to listen to it," she explained in an interview with the BBC. "I just keep pushing myself in all these different ways where eventually, hopefully, I've made something distinct that can be enjoyed by other people."
With enough soul to fill a river and a voice that drips with honey, Celeste has been making waves in England, and I think it's about time America caught on to her magic. She's unendingly impressive, and she makes her craft seem so easy - one of those people whose fate undoubtedly always lay with telling her story through song.
At the age of 16, Celeste was discovered by a manager after uploading a song called "Sirens" as a tribute to her late father to YouTube - she then went on to release her debut single, "Daydreaming," through Lily Allen's record label in October 2016, and her debut EP, The Milk & the Honey, was out the following spring. Celeste is currently signed to Polydor, whose eye she caught in 2018, and through whom she released her second EP, Lately, in March 2019. Her most recent single, "I Can See The Change," was produced by Grammy award winner FINNEAS.
It seemed, however, like 2019 was her year - she performed at SXSW in April, and Glastonbury and Primavera Sound in June. In October of 2019, she opened for Janelle Monáe for a night in Berlin and made her television debut with a performance of "Strange" on Later...With Jools Holland.
If you're a fan of Arlo Parks, Lily Moore, or Låpsley, you'll really vibe with Celeste. Some of my favorite songs of hers are "Chocolate," "Lately," and "Both Sides Of The Moon," but a good place to start would be Compilation 1.1, a collection of some of her best and most successful singles yet. Clearly she won't be going out on tour any time soon, but in the meantime, you can find her on Twitter and Instagram.