Tag Archives: Billie Eilish

Earlier this month I shared the 10 rising pop acts I felt could be the breakthrough stars of the year ahead, and invited This Must Be Pop readers to tell me which they thought, and hoped, would have the greatest success in 2018. And now, the results are in!

The act you think will be huge this year is…

1. BTS (29%)
2. Lauren Jauregui (19%)
3. Rak-Su (14%)

And the one you want to be the biggest new star is…

1. Sigrid (38%)
2. Billie Eilish (18%)
3. Pretty Much (16%)

Congrats to two very deserving winners! Sign up to the weekly Future Pop mailer to be first to hear about more new artists destined for stardom.

Now that we’ve surveyed the state of pop at the start of 2018, it’s time to review the candidates for this year’s biggest breakthrough acts. Here are the 10 future stars I think will capture pop fans’ hearts. Read on to learn more about them and have your say on  which you think, and hope, will make it big.

Billie Eilish

Billie is a perky blonde teen star from a musical family based in LA, but she’s definitely not the new Miley or Selena. Her alt-pop sound and outlandish style combine to create a unique, quirky artist for the Instagram age.


K-pop group BTS are already arguably the biggest boyband in the world, and as the west takes note of their pulling power, they’re sure to get more mainstream media opportunities like this and this in 2018.

Eves Karydas

Aussie singer Eves is probably the least established of the acts featured here, but she might just have the most pop star potential. Her first major label release, There For You, set the tone for an exciting year ahead.

Lauren Jauregui

Camila Cabello might have outshone her former bandmates in 2017, but she wasn’t the only fan favourite in Fifth Harmony. Lauren is talented and outspoken with a more alternative style, so her solo debut is sure to be intriguing.


PrettyMuch are the most polished and modern of the US boybands. They’ve had great support and investment from their label, and though it hasn’t quite clicked yet, I still feel the right single could skyrocket them.


The most promising X Factor act in years, Rak-Su already have a no.2 single under their belts, and are ready to capitalise on their win with an EP of their most popular original songs expected in the next few months.

Sarah Close

Singer-songwriter Sarah is a YouTube star with true talent and pop star potential. Her girl-next-door persona is reminiscent of early Taylor Swift, yet her thoughtful electro-pop would fit right in on 1989 or Reputation.


The cute, charismatic indie blogger’s fave hasn’t quite made her mark on the pop scene yet, but with strong media support and a prominent showing in the 2018 tip lists, all she needs now is a hit-worthy song.

Why Don’t We

Boyband Why Don’t We look like they were picked at random from a sixth form college, but the accessible vibe gives them an appeal that stylish, edgy PrettyMuch are missing. They’re the underdogs only to people who don’t know teen girls.


Recently signed to Interscope US, Yungblud is a northern lad with charm and energy to spare. He’s a great live performer and talented songwriter, who represents the politically engaged, opinionated teens of today.

Now we’ve considered the options, it’s time to cast your vote! Sign up to my Future Pop mailer for the exclusive winners announcement on Monday 15th Jan.

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

Last week I started drafting my Stars of 2018 list, mainly so I could note down Billie Eilish, who I think will be all over the ‘ones to watch’ features next year. She’d just turned 14 when she popped onto my radar with Ocean Eyes in early 2016, and now at the grand old age of 15 she’s in the midst of her major label launch. Billie is a typical LA teenager, equal parts cool and precocious. Her middle name is Pirate. She’s from a family of actors and musicians, and her brother Finneas O’Connell, who appeared in the last series of Glee, is her main co-writer. The song that got her signed was the sweet, introspective Ocean Eyes, which she recently performed on The Late, Late Show With James Corden as part of the Apple Music Up Next series. I prefer the poppier follow-up Bellyache, which has a fun video that sets out her distinctive style and personality. Billie is also known for the piano ballad Bored, which was on the 13 Reasons Why soundtrack. She has a thing for oversized outfits, which look a bit silly, but as she wears them in every promo appearance it makes her stand out more than her music would on its own. I find it hard to imagine there’s a big market for her, but so far signs are actually good – she has the unusual combo of industry buzz and real fans. Her upcoming London gig sold out in 20 minutes, and she already has fan videos with large view counts on YouTube.