YouTube Artist to Watch: Tori Kelly

Sometimes, YouTube is better than the radio.

Her success in the past includes a win on America's Most Talented Kids. Tori Kelly was also on Season 9 of American Idol; she made it to Hollywood, but was cut before she could make the Top 24. She self-released an EP, Handmade Songs By Tori Kelly, last May.

Her sound is a R&B-soaked pop. Her YouTube channel has over 250,000 subscribers and more than 29 millions views. She's said her elimination from American Idol was almost a blessing in disguise because it helped her work on her craft. In her words, “I just want to share my passion & express myself through music, which will hopefully inspire the world.”

YouTube has become a cultural phenomenon over the years, especially in the music world. The most obvious case-in-point is Justin Bieber, whose career as a pop superstar was kick-started after his mother posted videos of him singing on YouTube. The video-sharing site offers seemingly limitless opportunities to hear artists you might never have heard of otherwise. You don't even need a record deal to have a fatty fanbase nowadays.

I'm constantly on YouTube seeking new artists because I feel like the talent you find on there is so much more diverse and interesting than what you hear on the radio. And you can usually find someone covering your favorite song, whatever that song may be on any given week. This is how I discovered 20-year-old Tori Kelly, who I came upon performing her own acoustic beat-boxed rendition of Frank Ocean's "Thinking About You" . I fell in love with her angelic voice and after hitting her YouTube page, I found more covers as well as some of her original songs. [Video and more after the jump]...

Scroll to read more Music News articles


Join Creative Loafing Tampa Bay Newsletters

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.