Watch the singer/songwriter (and YouTube star) perform two songs and talk new music and style.
Nuanced, soulful singer/songwriter Tori Kelly has garnered over 45 million YouTube views, Justin Bieber's manager Scooter Braun tweeted she was "the truth" earlier this year, and both Cody Simpson and "Glee"'s Amber Riley have covered her tune "Fill A Heart." But the 20-year-old performer's already impressive ascent seems poised only to accelerate as she preps new music for release this fall and next year. For a special installment of Billboard's Tastemakers video series, the California native performed two originals -- "All In My Head" and "Eyelashes" -- from her 2012 EP "Handmade Songs By Tori Kelly," and shared her thoughts on style and her new songs.
Video: Tori Kelly performs "Eyelashes" acoustic.
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"Being on YouTube and posting covers for so long, there was a point where I was like, 'I think it's time to have my own music really show people who I am as an artist," Kelly says of the "scary but really cool" process of moving from covers to releasing originals on "Handmade Songs," which landed in the top 10 of Billboard's Heatseekers chart. "It was really awesome to see all the fans I had gotten from YouTube really support that."
But Kelly is eager to release the new music she's been working on. She shares that this fall is when fans will hopefully get to hear some of the new music she's been in the studio creating lately with "a bigger body of work" likely to follow next year.
Meanwhile, Tori has also been spending plenty of time on the road this bringing her songs to audiences live. She will be touring the U.K. in September. Kelly's effortless look flows directly from her focus on her music. "My everyday style merges into what I wear on stage because I'm just trying to be myself," she says, admitting she's a bit obsessed with jean vests lately. In the course of her career, she "was into the music and I think the fashion came from the music. I just let the music speak for itself," she says.