IT is only a matter of weeks before TRNSMT Festival officially opens its doors for another year and music fans descend on Glasgow Green to see their favourite artists on its hallowed turf.
Over the past few years, the award-winning festival may have gained a reputation for its big name acts and incredible atmosphere but it has also established itself as an incredible platform for up-and-coming talent.
While the festival’s Main Stage has hosted a wealth of international stars since its inception in 2017 – including Queen, Arctic Monkeys, The Killers and Radiohead to name a few the King Tut’s Powered by Utilita Stage over at the other end of the Glasgow Green site has given music fans a chance to get acquainted with an exciting array of rising stars and festival headliners of the future.
An excellent stepping stone for homegrown talent and hotly tipped acts from further afield, we take a look back at TRNSMT’s biggest success stories and those acts who have left an indelible impact on the festival from the very early stages of their career.
When talking about headliners of the future, there’s probably nowhere better to start than with Lewis Capaldi. From playing to pubs and clubs in and around Bathgate to having the fastest selling album of 2019, the TRNSMT crowds have been there from the very start. Back at the festival’s inaugural edition in 2017, Capaldi took to the King Tut’s stage early on a Sunday afternoon with only one single ‘Bruises’ to his name. However, despite having unleashed very little material to the public, it was very clear that he was an artist destined for big success. A year later he returned to make his Main Stage debut at the festival, appearing on the same stage as big names like The Killers, CHVRCHES and many more. Now two years on from his TRNSMT debut and he’s one of the biggest pop stars in the UK and a Radio 1 regular. Lewis Capaldi plays two sold-out headline shows at Summer Sessions in August, taking a year out from the TRNSMT circuit. We can only hope to see him at the top of the bill next year.
Hailing from the same town in West Lothian as Lewis Capaldi, The Snuts from Bathgate look set to follow in the singer-songwriters footsteps with mainstream success just around the corner. With a strong word-of-mouth following that has steadily started growing far beyond the reaches of their hometown, their rise to the forefront of the Scottish music scene was cemented with their performance on the King Tut’s stage at last year’s TRNSMT. Incredible scenes ensued as fans clambered on shoulders and sang along to every indie-rock anthem the band had to offer. Following a massive 12 months, the band return this year for their Main Stage debut with a new record deal in tow and a growing army of diehard fans. See them on Saturday 13th July 2019.
BRITS Critics Choice Award winner Sam Fender is widely regarded as one of the UK’s most exciting young talents. The Geordie singer-songwriter appeared on the King Tut’s Stage just last year but has since been catapulted into the limelight thanks to regular Radio 1 airplay and a string of incredible singles. Known for his deeply soulful brogue and rousing, socially conscious indie anthems that often tackle difficult subjects, Sam Fender is undoubtedly one of the most important songwriters in the UK at the moment and his performance on the Main Stage at TRNSMT this year will prove exactly that.
After headlining the King Tut’s stage last year, Norwegian pop prodigy returns to TRNSMT to take her rightful place on the Main Stage alongside some of the biggest names in music. The winner of much coveted BBC Sound Poll of 2018 unveiled her long-awaited debut album earlier this year and it certainly justified all the hype. With an arsenal of intelligent, meaningful pop tunes behind her aswell as bags of infectious energy and incredible voice, we get the impression that Sigrid is only just getting started…
It’s impossible to chart the phenomenal rise of Gerry Cinnamon without looking back at his performances at TRNSMT. The Glaswegian singer-songwriter has certainly made his mark on the festival in recent years. If his rapturous set on the King Tut’s stage in 2017 gave an inkling of where his career was headed then his Main Stage debut in 2018 certainly cemented his transformation from grassroots hero to national phenomenon. Undoubtedly one of the most defining moments in the festival’s history, he returns once again to play his biggest show to date when he takes a top slot on the Main Stage on Friday night of TRNSMT 2019.
Signed to the same label as The 1975 and labelled as one the UK’s most exciting up and coming guitar bands from the moment they burst onto the scene with ‘Honey’, it’s no surprise that Pale Waves left a lasting impression at TRNSMT 2018. The band have barely had time to catch a breath since; they released their debut album ‘My Mind Makes Noises’ last September, followed it up with a sold-out UK tour and have spent 2019 touring the world with label-mates The 1975. Backed by a diehard army of fans that has grown far beyond the reaches of the UK, they just keep getting bigger and bigger… check the band out at Glasgow’s Summer Sessions for your Scottish fix this summer.
Currently hard at work on his new album and the follow-up to his critically acclaimed debut ‘What Do You Think About the Car?’, Declan McKenna is another example of TRNSMT’s history of supporting emerging artists and giving the public a glimpse into the future of music. After appearing on the King Tut’s stage in 2017 alongside the likes of Lewis Capaldi, The Amazons, Tom Grennan and more, the young singer-songwriter made the leap to the Main Stage a year later; a shift that was testament to his hard work and increasingly popular appeal. And having covered the length and breadth of the US as part of his relentless touring schedule, there’s definitely more to come from this intelligent, socially conscious indie popper.
After headlining the King Tut’s stage last summer, Scots star Tom Walker has had a massive 12 months. Following the phenomenal success of his breakthrough hit ‘Leave the Light On, he won the award for ‘Best British Breakthrough’ at the BRIT Awards earlier this year and reached number 1 in the UK charts with his debut album ‘What a Time To Be Alive’. And after selling out shows all over the UK earlier this year, he is back for more in November to play some of his biggest venues to date including a show at the O2 Academy in Glasgow.
The Amazons deal in passionate, ballsy and loud as hell rock & roll. Since first bursting onto the scene, their mission statement has been to reinvigorate the genre and get people excited about rock again. And for the past couple of years they’ve been doing exactly that. Not only did the band leave a thunderous impression at the inaugural edition of TRNSMT with a mid-afternoon slot on the King Tut’s stage, they also released their self-titled debut album which unexpectedly shot into to the UK top 10 and turned out to be the highest charting rock debut since Royal Blood’s. A band who continue to sell out shows all over the UK, they have just unveiled their eagerly anticipated second album ‘Future Dust’ and return to TRNSMT this year to take on the Main Stage
Scottish alt-rock trio have steadily risen through the ranks of the nation’s music scene with one excellent album after another. Since last year’s performance on the King Tut’s Stage, they have gone from strength to strength; unveiled their third LP ‘Sum of All You Parts’, taken their cathartic brand of indie-rock to America and played their biggest headline shows to date around the UK including a recent show at the O2 Academy in Glasgow. They have also just been unveiled as headliners of the Scottish inner-city festival Tenement Trail.