Hometown: Nottingham, England
Backstory: The 18-year-old singer-songwriter learned basic guitar chords from his uncle at 12, started writing his own songs at 14 and got signed to Mercury at 16. He won high praise from Oasis’ Noel Gallagher, who recently took Bugg out as his opening act on a U.S. tour with Snow Patrol. “The audience seemed really responsive,” says Bugg, whose self-titled debut – which isn’t out yet in the States – debuted at Number One in the U.K.
Know Your Idols: Bugg takes his cues from old school musicians, and not just his fellow Brits; distinctly American songwriters like Dylan and Don McLean are among his influences, too. “Jimi Hendrix is probably my favorite guitarist,” Bugg says. “When I’m listening to him, it’s inspiring but also disheartening, because obviously, no one will ever be able to play like Jimi Hendrix.”
Go Your Own Way: While many talented teens try their hand at reality singing competitions for an easy go at fame, Bugg wasn’t feeling it, despite urging from his schoolmates that he’d excel on Britain’s Got Talent. “A lot of these people who go on these shows never have long careers,” Bugg says. “It’s more about their 15 minutes of fame.”
Hot Clip: Watch the video for “Two Fingers” above.
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Listen to an exclusive acoustic version of “Two Fingers”: