Florida-born singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Brandyn Burnette is a talented young artist, most definitely deserving of the Promising Pop accolade. Sure, Brandyn Burnette can sing but to make it as an artist today, you need more than good vocals. Burnette knows what he wants and is willing to do whatever it takes to get there—as long as that doesn’t mean compromising on who he feels he is as an artist. After auditioning for the final season of American Idol (currently airing on FOX) with an original song, “Lost,” Brandyn announced on Instagram that he had opted NOT to continue through to Hollywood week. While to many, this decision might seem INSANE, Brandyn eloquently explained his desire to focus on his own artistry—writing original music. What maturity! How can you not respect that? Read his announcement BELOW:
SPOILER ALERT: A few months ago, I had an amazing opportunity to audition in front of the judges on the last season of @americanidol… As one can imagine, I was very excited by the opportunity to expose my story, voice & music so I drove up to San Francisco for the open call audition. I had a truly incredibly experience & everyone from the producers to the contestants to the judges were so nice. Even though the judges put me through to Hollywood Week & asked me to be on the show, I decided to stay on my own course with my original music. Without giving anything away, I wanted to make this announcement to let my fans, friends & peers know my reasoning for not participating in this farewell season. I am so honored the show decided to air my audition & I am grateful for every single person that has discovered my music since. I wrote “Lost” for you. It was inspired by two fans who experienced losing someone for the first time. This song is for anybody who has experienced some form of loss- whether it’s a relationship, a person, a pet, a friend or yourself. This song is a celebration of life & love, by guiding you through your loss. To be able to have a moment to reach any of you who might’ve needed to hear my message is something I didn’t expect going into this & therefor am eternally grateful. From the bottom of my heart, I want to thank @ryanseacrest, @jlo, @keithurban, @harryconnickjr & Peter Cohen for the incredible opportunity & once in a lifetime experience. I walked away with a big boost of confidence & I couldn’t be more thankful to have had the ability to play one of my original songs on national television. -Brandyn Burnette
Having already released his debut EP—the electro/R&B-tinged Made Of Dreams (iTunes | Spotify), which includes buzz singles “Down,” “I Wanna Be Free” and “Nothing At All” (see video ABOVE) Brandyn Burnette is gearing up for a promising and sure-to-be-exciting career ahead. Given his musical pedigree (his father is 1980s R&B recording artist O’Bryan), Brandyn’s talent and determination should come as no surprise. Learning to play the piano at the age of 7 he was already writing his own music by the age of 13. By the time he arrived at NYU (on a full musical scholarship, no less) Brandyn Burnette had already written around 80 original songs. INCREDIBLE!
While in New York, Burnette gigged where and when he could, spending his remaining free time in the dorm, writing and recording away. A demo he recorded in his NYU dorm room eventually got the attention of veteran manager Ric Aliberte, ultimately signing with Warner Bros. Records and releasing “Thanks For Nothing.” In addition to writing for himself, Burnette writes for songs for other artists, co-penning tunes with the likes of Hot Chelle Rae, MKTO, Jake Miller, Charlie Puth and most recently, LA-based progressive soul outfit Yngcult, featuring on their synthfully mouth-watering new track “Avalanche.”
Musically, I have to say I like the direction Brandyn is headed in now on his Made Of Dreams EP, as opposed to the “boy band-adjacent” vibe heard on songs like “Thanks For Nothing.” Burnette’s new sound is infinitely more refined, his style considerably more sophisticated—all while maintaining a necessary level of commercial palatability that he needs in order to be heard. While there are poppies nods to his past on the EP (“No Invitation,” “Made Of Dreams“) the strongest tracks for me are songs like “Down,” “I Wanna Be Free” and “Nothing At All“—the sort of future R&B that’s making waves right now, with their glitchy, imperfect, wobbly synth-lines injected with Brandyn’s smooth, soulful vocals. Having already experienced some of the industry’s highs and lows—or instance, signing with a major label, writing songs for big artists, the trials and tribulations associated with auditioning for a MAJOR prime time reality show—Brandyn Burnette has a lot more experience than many new artists his age. It’s going to be a lot of fun watching Brandyn’s journey. His future is certainly very bright.