Vevo today announces Kiana Ledé and AJ Mitchell as their newest LIFT acts of 2019. Vevo’s LIFT initiative connects today’s up-and-coming artists to audiences around the globe through video content. Launched in 2011, Vevo’s artist development program shines a spotlight on the world’s freshest new talent. Vevo LIFT alumni include the likes of Sam Smith, Halsey, Khalid, Jorja Smith, SZA, Julia Michaels, Billie Eilish and CNCO. Ledé and Mitchell’s LIFT performances follow those of Def Jam Recordings’ YK Osiris, who recently premiered a live version of his hit “Worth It” as well as a short film, “YK Osiris: Young King.”
“We’re proud to welcome Kiana Ledè and AJ Mitchell to the 2019 LIFT program,” said JP Evangelista, Vevo’s Senior Vice President of Content, Programing & Marketing. “Both artists are rising stars that have the potential to make a true mark on the music industry; we look forward to showing the world their individual talents. LIFT plays a big part in our commitment to artist development, so it’s great to expand our 2019 roster. We’ve been working with both Kiana and AJ for some time now, and helping them grow their audiences on our platform is truly rewarding.”
R&B starlet Kiana Ledé has quickly developed from childhood phenom to one of the world’s most promising and intriguing young stars. A true mix of cultures, African, Latino and Native American, Kiana crafted her own unique vocal sound into a natural blend of these global, expressive influences. Kiana dropped her Selfless EP, featuring “Show Love” and “Ex” in 2018 after previously starring in MTV’s Scream and having a track on the chart-dominating Official Soundtrack for Fifty Shades Freed. A Vevo DSCVR alum, Kiana’s LIFT content will include live performances of an assortment of tracks from her new Myself EP.
“For my Vevo LIFT session, I reimagined ‘Can I’ with harp, strings and piano, because when I was younger and in Orchestra, I developed a real love and admiration for classical music and the beautiful arrangements,” said Kiana Ledé. “With ‘Shawty,’ I wanted to highlight and bring out that brightness and playfulness that I felt when I wrote it. The little Reggae vibe at the end was totally impromptu on day of shooting with Vevo. We just stumbled into it and had to finish it that way. You can see how much fun we had doing that in the final performance and I’m thankful to Vevo for making my vision come to life.”
Vevo LIFT scored performances from another rising star in Artist To Watch alum AJ Mitchell. AJ Mitchell emerges as a stylish and soulful new leading man for pop R&B. Born and raised in Bellville, IL, he went from uploading highly-trafficked covers on social media to personally writing and recording his 2017 breakout single “Used To Be.” Mitchell’s 2018 major label debut EP, Hopeful, maintained his meteoric momentum with a string of hits such as “I Don’t Want You Back” and “Girls”. He kicked off 2019 with the launch of the “Hopeful Tour,” and on his most recent release, “Slow Dance,” Mitchell teams up with rising superstar Ava Max on what is bound to be a pop hit.
“I am honored to be selected as one of this year’s Vevo LIFT artists,” said AJ Mitchell. “The program gives artists an amazing platform for expression and support. I’m super inspired to be with this group of alumni that includes some of my absolute favorites like Lewis Capaldi, Khalid, and Billie Eilish.”
AJ’s LIFT performances are set to premiere in the coming weeks with an unofficial video for Slow Dance premiering today. He will also be releasing the Slow Dance EP next Friday, August 23.