Previously on iHeartRadio Future Star… Top 5 CHR Artists
Magic! - December 2013
Toronto’s Nasri Atweh (with collaborator Adam Messinger) wrote and produced songs for artists like Justin Bieber, Chris Brown, Shakira, Iggy Azalea, and New Kids On The Block. But, by late 2013, Atweh was ready for the spotlight — and he stepped into it as frontman of a band called Magic!
The first single, “Rude,” from the group’s debut album was one of the best-selling songs of 2014 and earned a Juno Award. The band — which also consists of Mark Pellizzer, Ben Spivak and Alex Tanas — performed on the American Music Awards with Wyclef Jean and toured as the opening act for Maroon 5. The video for “Rude” topped 1.2 billion views on YouTube.
The album’s title track, “Don’t Kill the Magic,” was also a hit and the group followed up on their success with the 2016 release of the album Primary Colours.
Virginia to Vegas - January 2014
Derik Baker, the man known as Virginia to Vegas, must have known he was a future star because his first single was titled “We Are Stars.” The collaboration with singer Alyssa Reid, was released in January 2014 — two years before the release of his debut album Utopian.
Born in Virginia but raised in Ontario, Baker went on to give us the infectious “Lights Out” in late 2016. The song borrows a line from the 1984 hit “Somebody’s Watching Me” by Rockwell.
Baker has said being in the recording studio “is almost a high” but that hasn’t stopped him from hitting the stage. The Utopian Tour in early 2017 brought Virginia to Vegas to a handful of Canadian cities.
Kiesza - June 2014
Calgary-born Kiesa Ellestad — better known simply by her first name — recorded the earworm “Hideaway” in the summer of 2013. In only a few months, it was one of the biggest songs in the world. “Hideaway” hit No. 1 in countries like Italy, Belgium, the UK and Russia.
Aided by a clever video that has been viewed more than 76 million times on YouTube, “Hideaway” — from her second album Sound of a Woman — propelled Kiesza to fame. She collaborated with Skrillex and Diplo, toured with Demi Lovato, and appeared as the face of Fendi eyewear.
Kiesza also racked up three Juno Awards as well as nominations for the MTV Europe Music Awards, BBC Music Awards and Much Music Video Awards.
Alessia Cara - July 2015
Young Brampton, Ont. native Alessia Cara caught everyone’s ear with her strong and soulful vocals on “Here,” an anthem for house party wallflowers. Cosmopolitan, Spin and Rolling Stone raved about the track and Billboard made it one of “20 Pop Songs You Need For Your Summer Playlist.”
“Here,” which appeared on Cara’s debut EP Four Pink Walls, was followed by songs like “Wild Things” and “Scars to Your Beautiful.” Her album Know-It-All was a hit and she performed on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, opened for Coldplay on tour, recorded a song for the soundtrack of Moana, and earned Breakthrough Artist of the Year at the Juno Awards.
Cara topped off her incredible breakthrough with a performance on SNL in February 2017, a collaboration with Zedd, and a Juno for album of the year.
PARTYNEXTDOOR - December 2016
PARTYNEXTDOOR (born Jahron Brathwaite) of Mississauga, Ont. was the first artist signed to Drake’s OVO Sound label. He has crafted songs for artists like Drake, Big Sean and Rihanna and earned Grammy, Billboard and Juno Awards nominations.
PARTYNEXTDOOR has also been putting out music of his own since 2013. “Not Nice,” from his second studio album, followed “Come and See Me,” a track featuring Drake. The song helped his album top the Billboard R&B/Hip-Hop Album chart and hit No. 3 on the Billboard 200.