Taken from this week’s Future Pop mailer. Click here to subscribe.

It’s taken a while for Ariana Grande to get on the right track musically, but it was clear even before she’d released her first single that she was going to be a huge star. Thanks to her roots in children’s TV, she has a strong fanbase of teenage girls, which is a big achievement for a female artist, and she has even managed to get away with dating two boyband members (according to some reports, both at the same time). Ariana’s first single, Put Your Hearts Up, was catchy but generic, while her debut album was unexpectedly cool with its 90s R&B sound, but lacked standout singles. Finally, she’s got it just right with her new album, thanks to the involvement of producers including the legendary Max Martin. Problem was an easy instant mega-hit, and I think the new single Break Free, produced by Zedd, will be just as big. It’s my favourite song she’s released so far.

Check out my original feature on Ariana from 2011 here.