The winner of the NME Breakthrough Supported By BlackBerry Lovebox competition has admitted he felt “honoured” to play the opening slot at this year’s festival.
Midlands singer-songwriter Matt Henshaw was picked ahead of hundreds of unsigned acts by a judging panel, which included Groove Armada‘s Tom Findlay, NME Editor Krissi Murison, Peter Elliot from Primary Talent International, Rob Silver from Lovebox and NME New Music Editor Jaimie Hodgson to perform at Victoria Park on Friday afternoon (July 16).
“I was a bit worried about my friends getting in on time but it worked out OK, and the crowd were on our side,” he said of his opening slot. “It’s a little bit of an honour.”
Speaking of his victory he added: “I had a phone call telling me I was in the Top Five and I was like, ‘Hold on all these people are interested in some tunes I cooked up over Easter?’ Then when I won thought I’d better getting working on a stage show then.”
The singer was joined by rap troupe Reggimental, as he performed three tracks with the band and another trio of his own songs.
Matt Henshaw played:
‘The World’s Gone Mad’ (feat Joey G-Zus)
‘Grown Ups’ (feat Unfriendly Neighbours)
‘Far Away’ (feat MH, Reg & Rukus)
‘The Deepest Cellar’
‘Can’t Hold Back’
Following his performance, the singer told NME he came down to earth with a bump after coming offstage: “We were turfed out of our dressing room by Dizzee Rascal‘s entourage because they needed an extra room. Luckily Bombay Bicycle Club let us put our stuff in theirs.”
NME Breakthrough supported by BlackBerry is launching a new competition to find the best unsigned act in the UK play an opening slot at Club NME at KOKO in London, get a video filmed by NME and star in a Radar feature in magazine.
The closing date for entries is August 16. Check out this week’s issue of NME for more, it will be on UK newsstands from Wednesday (July 21), or available digitally worldwide right now.
To add NME Breakthrough as a contact on your BBM and get updates on the latest new music and Breakthrough stories; access your BlackBerry Messenger folder, click invite contact, type the PIN: 2219C9BD, click send and wait for NME to confirm you as a contact. It’s that simple.