Despite the recent hardships faced by the music industry in Wales, Forté Project, an artist development scheme for emerging musicians, has announced that KINGKHAN, Hemes, Mojo JNR, The Honest Poet and Mari Mathias from South Wales have been selected to embark on its 2021 programme alongside five other artists.
Forté Project did not give up the fight in 2020 and as a result, has secured Arts Council of Wales and PRS Foundation funding, allowing the project to expand beyond its original South Wales regions for the first time and reach new artists across the country.
Music Talent Given Professional Support
Thanks to this, the chosen artists, aged between 16-25, will be given professional industry support designed to progress their early careers, during a six-month mentorship programme.
They will receive masterclasses from top names in the industry such as Romesh Dodaganda (Grammy-nominated producer: Bring Me The Horizon), Corey Sanders (Songwriter for Katy Perry), Warp Records (home to Brian Eno and Aphex Twin), Bethan Elfyn (BBC Radio Wales), and Davey Newington (Boy Azooga).
Naturally, the programme has been shaped to suit a more Covid friendly way of working with all classes taking place digitally, and the addition of some new pandemic-proof lessons. Including, how to professionally live stream and record tracks at home, which is more important now than ever before.
Forté Project Partner with Mental Health UK For Programme
On top of this, another new yet relevant aspect of the programme this year is working with Mental Health UK to deliver a digital mental health support package tailored to each act.
Forté Project’s Lead Officer, Spike Griffiths says, “Even though the past 12 months have been crushing for the music industry, it feels great to finally say that something good has emerged from such challenging times.
“It’s important that we adapt our ways of working to be relevant right now which is why we’ve introduced live streaming, home recording and mental health support packages for each artist.
“The new way of working has allowed us to expand outside of South Wales and discover the incredible quality of music emerging from Wales. Obviously, this all made things very difficult for the panel in the final selection process.”
Artists Comment On Joining Forté Project
Over five years, Forté has worked with over fifty young artists to build their profile, generate opportunities and provide the necessary knowledge to help propel them into a career in the industry.
Commenting on their selection:
Cardiff’s KINGKHAN says “I feel incredibly humbled to be a part of the Forte Project this year and can’t wait to work with them on developing myself as an artist. No man is an island and I’m excited to see how my career develops with Forte’s support”
Rhondda Cynon Taf’s Hemes says “I’m so excited to be part of the forté project this year! I am really looking forward to getting to know the other artists, collaborating and attending industry sessions. I can’t wait to see what this year brings! ”
Swansea’s Mojo JNR says, “Being chosen for Forté has given me a new lease of life, I’m stoked for the future of Mojo JNR and I’m looking forward to meeting all the experts and soaking up as much knowledge as possible!”
Monmouthshire’s The Honest Poet says, “I’m ecstatic that I am a part of this year’s Forté Project. I am looking forward to learning new things that are going to help forward my career.”
Cardiff’s Mari Mathias says, “I’m really looking forward to developing further as an artist and creating new and exciting music from the experiences and connections through Forté.”
Former acts who have previously benefited from Forté support include Welsh producer EÄDYTH, pop act HANA2K and singer-songwriter Otto, who signed to Eurythmics’ Dave Stewart’s record label in 2020.