LABELS: Technique Recordings
From an early age, he was building a diverse palette of musical influences. From Motown and soul to straight-up pop, everything fed into and directed his career path. Heavily influenced by his dad, “Bassline Smith”, part of the pioneering DnB outfit Drumsound & Bassline Smith, it’s unsurprising Youngman started his own sonic journey in that world of weighty bass and beats.
High-profile recognition for his talents came in 2010 when he signed to Shy FX’s elite Digital Soundboy label, then in 2012 when his songwriting skills led to a publishing deal with Warner Chappell. Then, his collaboration with multi-genre maestro Skream, “Who Knows?” proved his credentials as an artist and songwriter. This Polydor-signed track took a spot on the playlist at Radio 1, 1Xtra and Kiss FM, chalking up plaudits from the likes of Zane Lowe, Annie Mac and MistaJam in the process.
Since then, he’s become a much in-demand collaborator, both live and in the studio, for luminaries across the electronic music scene. Working with the likes of Benga, Roni Size, MJ Cole and Jakwob, plus his multiple team-ups with NVOY, has cemented his reputation not just as a vocalist, but as an accomplished live performer.
Vitally, he’s proven his ability to make music connect with audiences at events like Glastonbury, Lovebox, the Reading & Leeds Festival and Global Gathering. These opportunities, and those granted by supporting Example on a UK arena tour, multiple bookings across Europe, America and Australia, a headline spot on the 2012 MOBO tour and a continuing place in Wilkinson’s live show, have given him fresh insight into the art and science of making music work for real people.
Growing from his roots in electronic music, recent years have seen Youngman join production and songwriting team NewCrowd to progress this side of his work to the next level. Working in London and LA alongside NewCrowd founder, the prolific and highly successful Carla Marie Williams, he’s had the privilege of collaborating with some of the biggest names in music, including man of the moment DJ Mustard, The Futuristics and the Rock City and multi-Grammy winner Warryn Campbell. And their skills have also been in demand by younger artists, leading to them write tracks for the likes of Justine Syke, Becky G and Krishane.
2016 was the year in which Youngman came of age as a songwriter, writing two pieces for Britney Spears’ album “Glory”. “Private Show” and “What You Need” cemented his place as an artist capable of spanning the divide between underground and mainstream. And, to prove the point further, he started 2017 by returning to his drum ‘n’ bass roots with the track “Sorry”, notching up more airplay on BBC Radio 1, 1Xtra and Kiss FM in the process.
The ultimate goal is to channel all that passion, experience and knowledge he’s accrued over the years into creating music that resonates with listeners across the globe. And the mission’s the same whether he’s performing his own work or writing for the next international superstar artist. Youngman’s journey continues.