Each Friday, Billboard presents Bubbling Under, a weekly look at new and noteworthy acts making their way toward Billboard chart success. Up this week: Magic!, Mila J and Grizfolk
Canadian reggae/pop quartet Magic! is crossing to U.S. pop and adult pop radio with its debut RCA single, the sunny, summery "Rude." The tale of a determined would-be groom has scored success in the group's home country, as well as Australia and New Zealand. Aiding the band's profile: a recent appearance at South by Southwest and a featured turn on labelmate Shakira's new album on the set's "Cut Me Deep." The group also boasts a track on "One Love, One Rhythm: The 2014 FIFA World Cup Official Album," due May 13.
In 1991, an adolescent Mila J appeared in the video for Prince's last Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs No. 1, "Diamonds and Pearls." Twenty-three years later, the Los Angeles entertainer debuts her very adult "Smoke, Drink, Break-Up" (Motown/Capitol) at No. 46 on R&B/Hip-Hop Airplay. She honed her performing chops as part of Chris Stoke's T.U.G. entertainment group, both as a dancer and a member of girl group Gyrl, which included her sister Miyoko. Mila J's youngest sister? Jhene (Aiko), who ranks at No. 2 on R&B/Hip-Hop Airplay with "The Worst."
Grizfolk's hybrid of folk/pop is also a mixture of origins: Swedish producers Fredrik Eriksson and Sebastian Fritze and American songwriter Adam Roth formed the trio in Los Angeles last year. The group's first Capitol EP "From the Spark," debuted at No. 15 on the March 15 Heatseakers Albums chart, while first single "The Struggle" is building at adult alternative radio, thanks to its rollicking chorus, forceful drumbeat and twinkling synths. Grizfolk has opened for ZZ Ward, Real Estate and the current leading act on the Hot Rock Songs chart, labelmate Bastille.
Reporting by Rauly Ramirez, Gary Trust and Emily White of the Billboard charts department