BBC Introducing presents Catfish and the Bottlemen at the inaugural BBC music awards

Catfish and The Bottlemen have been on a brilliant journey with the BBC, and it now culminates in a huge opportunity for wider exposure on BBC One with some of the biggest artists in the world.Jason Carter, Head of BBC Introducing
Category: BBC One; Radio 1; Radio 2
Wednesday 19 November: BBC Introducing will present Indie-Rock band Catfish and the Bottlemen at the all new BBC Music Awards next month, it was announced by Huw Stephens with Steve Lamacq live on BBC Radio 1 with Catfish frontman Van McCann.

BBC Introducing presents Catfish and the Bottlemen at the inaugural BBC music awards

The four-piece, from Llandudno North Wales, are to perform alongside some of the biggest and most iconic UK and international artists on 11 December, as part of the BBC’s inaugural annual ceremony to celebrate the year in music. The band will play to a live audience of 13,500 people at London’s Earls Court and to millions more across the country on BBC One, Radio 1, Radio 2 and at bbc.co.uk/music alongside One Direction, Coldplay, Ed Sheeran, Clean Bandit, Paloma Faith and Calvin Harris amongst others still to be announced.

Steve Lamacq said: “I first came across Catfish in 2009, when we played an early demo of the band and spoke to singer Van on 6Music. Even then you could tell he had a very interesting take on observational lyrics and the music was very assured for a band of teenagers. Since then they’ve worked really hard, gigged all over the place and it’s wonderful seeing how their music has really started resonating with people this year. I’m very proud of them. And the support they’ve had along the way from BBC Introducing, 6Music and Radio 1. I’ve even followed them on tour a couple of times this year and watched as they’ve leapt up from the little venues to bigger stages, but to get a chance to play on BBC One is really important for showcasing them to a much wider audience."

BBC Introducing is one of the BBC’s 17 initiatives to showcase emerging musical talent. The scheme, which has kick-started the careers of Jake Bugg, Florence and the Machine, George Ezra and many more since its launch in 2007, provides a platform to propel the best new acts from across the UK onto the national stage.

Catfish and the Bottlemen first uploaded their music to the BBC Introducing Uploader in 2010 – which has now seen more than 500,000 tracks uploaded. They were then supported by the BBC Introducing show in Wales. In 2013, they were selected to play the BBC Introducing stage at Reading / Leeds. At the same time their track ‘Rango’ was chosen for the BBC Introducing slot on the Radio 1 playlist as well as being supported by Steve Lamacq on 6Music . They went on to record a Maida Vale session for Huw Stephens and played the Radio 1 Future Festival in January 2014. They then headlined the BBC Introducing stage at Radio 1’s Big Weekend in Glasgow.

Jason Carter, Head of BBC Introducing said: “BBC Introducing provides unique and unrivalled opportunities for new up and coming UK artists, supporting them across BBC platforms and at major events and festivals. Catfish and The Bottlemen have been on a brilliant journey with the BBC, and it now culminates in a huge opportunity for wider exposure on BBC One with some of the biggest artists in the world.”

The rock quartet, who credit a busker of the same name as the inspiration to their unusual title, consists of Van McCann (lead vocals), Johnny 'Bondy' Bond (lead guitar), Benji Blakeway (bass guitar) and Robert ‘Bob’ Hall (drums). Signed to Island Records earlier in 2014, their sound has previously been described as ‘high octane indie rock’ by BBC Introducing, while the band have been likened to rock heavyweights the Arctic Monkeys and The Strokes.

Since the BBC Music strategy was unveiled in June this year by Director General, Tony Hall, the BBC has launched an ambitious wave of new programmes and initiatives, including the signature ‘God Only Knows’ last month. The BBC Music Awards are set to be the biggest musical event on the BBC since Glastonbury, to review and celebrate the year with gongs awarded for British Artist, International Artist and Song of the Year.

Tickets for the musical extravaganza have now sold out; whilst the ceremony, including Catfish and the Bottlemen’s performance, will go out live across BBC One, Radio 1, Radio 2 and on bbc.co.uk/music. Both BBC Radios 1 and 2 will bring listeners all the backstage build-up throughout the day.

For more info: FRW/KA

BBC Introducing

BBC Introducing provides a network dedicated to supporting the best emerging talent from across the UK and a platform to propel them onto the national stage through Radio 1, 1Xtra, Radio 2, 6 Music and the Asian Network.

It gives up-and-coming artists broadcast opportunities on BBC radio, television and online alongside the chance to perform at major festivals and showcases. Big name artists including Florence and The Machine, Jake Bugg, Rizzle Kicks, Wretch 32 and George Ezra all received BBC Introducing support at the start of their careers.

For BBC Music, BBC Introducing has announced a partnership with the Skills Academy Creative & Cultural; an organisation that works alongside employers to increase skills through quality training. BBC Introducing will work with academies across the country to develop the technical and production skills of the future, particularly in the live space. We will work with Academy students to produce on-air content for a range of BBC Introducing sessions and radio shows, as well as sharing the knowledge and experience of teams here at the BBC to develop different skills that are paramount to the future health of the music industry.

Next year, a collection of the best new British talent will perform at four BBC Introducing showcases in North America. This is as a result of a new partnership BBC Introducing has formed with PRS for Music Foundation, the UK’s leading charitable funder of new music and emerging talent. All four showcases will be co-funded by the PRS for Music Foundation and is part of BBC Introducing’s commitment to offer the best new artists unrivalled opportunities to be seen and heard, and extending those opportunities wider than the UK and into North America.

New Talent Initiatives

The BBC runs 17 new talent initiatives, designed to support and nurture artists and help to launch them onto the national and international stage. The 17 schemes are:

1. BBC Young Musician

2. BBC Young Jazz Musician

3. BBC Young Scottish Musician

4. BBC Proms Inspire

5. Radio 3 New Generation Artists

6. Radio 2 Young Brass

7. Radio 2 Young Chorister

8. Radio 2 Young Folk

9. BBC Cardiff Singer of the World

10. BBC Songs of Praise Choir of the Year

11. BBC Songs of Praise Gospel Choir of the Year

12. BBC Introducing

13. BBC Music Sound Of...

14. BBC Wales Horizons/Gorwelion

15. BBC Performing Arts Fund

16. BBC Young Dancer

17. BBC Radio Ulster’s School Choir of the Year