Three quarters of 2022 Mercury Prize nominees funded by PRS Foundation

With the addition of this year’s nominees, PRS Foundation supported artists have made up more than half of the nominations over the last four years (29 out of 48 between 2019 - 2022).

Maya Radcliffe
  • By Maya Radcliffe
  • 28 Jul 2022
  • min read

Nine of the 12 artists nominated for this year’s Mercury Prize have received support from PRS Foundation at key points in the development of their careers.

These artists and the support they received are:

  • Fergus McCreadie – International Showcase Fund to perform at Jazzahead 2022
  • Gwenno - Women Make Music 2015 (for a collaboration with Emma Daman Thomas)
  • Joy Crookes - BBC Music Introducing & PRS Foundation showcase support at Reeperbahn Festival in 2019
  • Kojey Radical - International Showcase Fund support to perform at SXSW 2017
  • Little Simz - PPL Momentum support in 2015, International Showcase Fund support to perform at Canadian Music Week 2014, and BBC Music Introducing & PRS Foundation showcase support at SXSW 2015
  • Nova Twins - POWER UP support in 2021, PPL Momentum support in 2019 and International Showcase Fund support to perform at Eurosonic 2019 and at SXSW 2022
  • Sam Fender - PPL Momentum support in 2018 and International Showcase Fund support to perform SXSW 2019
  • Self Esteem – The Open Fund for Music Creators in 2017
  • Yard Act - PPL Momentum support in 2022 and International Showcase Fund to perform at SXSW 2022

Funding partners for the development schemes listed above include PRS for Music, PPL, Arts Council England, British Underground, Department for International Trade, Creative Scotland, Arts Council of Wales, Creative Wales, Wales Arts International, Arts Council of Northern Ireland, Invest NI, the Musicians’ Union, YouTube Music, Beggars Group, Black Music Coalition, Spotify and BBC Music Introducing.

Each of these music creators have accessed PRS Foundation support targeted to meet specific career development needs (including creating, recording, UK touring or showcasing internationally). Most supported artists received this vital and timely support prior to signing deals, including several who have gone on to work with major labels and major publishers – and many credit the Foundation support as being integral to their career development and give back to the Foundation in various ways.

Joe Frankland, chief executive, PRS Foundation, said: ‘Huge congratulations to all the nominees for this year’s Mercury Prize. The large proportion of nominees who have received PRS Foundation support demonstrates the impact of our long-term, targeted approach to talent development. We remove barriers to progression and provide vital support at the right time and we are proud to have helped these incredibly talented artists on their journeys. This would not be possible without the support of our funders, partners, independent advisors and those successful grantees giving back to the Foundation.

‘Music creators are going through incredibly difficult times post-pandemic, post-Brexit and during a cost-of-living crisis, and I would urge the largest players in the sector – including those who specialise in scaling up the careers of many creators we have previously supported - to get behind and collaborate with the Foundation so that we can continue to support talent development and changemaking from the grassroots up.’

Andrea Czapary Martin, chief executive, PRS for Music: ‘Congratulations to all the Mercury Prize nominees who have created music that moved people during an extremely challenging time for songwriters and composers. It’s powerful to see the impact of joint investment in talent, between PRS for Music and PRS Foundation, and how it can help raise the profiles and further the careers of some of the UK’s most exciting artists. Developing initiatives for emerging talent is a key part of our commitment to provide a springboard to showcase music and enable networking with the music industry and new audiences. I am excited to see the range of artists who are being recognised for their work for this year’s Mercury Prize and I look forward to watching them continue to succeed.’