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Izzy Bizu, who was born in 1994 to an Ethiopian mother and an English father, is a star on the soul music horizon that you should most definitely keep an eye on. London’s skateboarding soulstress is no one trick pony – there’s layers to her personality, which also reflects in her music.
Izzy spent her childhood and teenage years moving between countries, schools and relationships. Before moving to London – the place she now calls home – Izzy and her family lived in the Middle East for four years. She flirted with dreams of musical grandeur during a brief stint at Stamford boarding school, where a teacher discovered her talent. But it was on joining Ravenscout Theatre School as a teenager that her love for poetry and an academic discipline to the arts was applied. With 17 she enrolled at Tech Music School, where she furthered her musical talent and interests. In 2013 she sang during an open mic session at the record label ILuvLive – this price-winning performance turned out to be the kick-start for her solo career.
Her debut EP “Coolbeanz” was released on the ILuvLive label and ensured her early support from 1Xtra and BBC Radio 1. She has been working together with some of the industry’s finest producers, including Luke Juby (Emeli Sande), Ian Barter (Amy Winehouse), and Dan Grech (Lana Del Rey). Her music reflects her personality: it is a mix between different musical influences, including soul, jazz, funk and pop. Izzy is a cultural explorer and wise beyond her 21-years, a sentiment that reigns in her songwriting, vocals and performance. The musician has been a supporting act for Sam Smith and compared to the young Amy Winehouse. However, we can be sure to see her make a name for herself in the upcoming year, when her first full-length album is to be released under Sony.
Izzy dreams of performing a stadium show in Ethiopia and touring the US. She says: “I like women who are real women, troubled souls – I understand that. (. . .) Being able to get on stage and lay yourself out so openly, ultimately that’s what I’m ready for.”
Ready she is.