James Bay Wins Brits Critics’ Choice Prize

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James Bay performs during the Austin City Limits Music Festival at Zilker Park on October 3, 2014 in Austin, Texas. 

James Bay, a 24-year-old British singer-songwriter, has been awarded the 2015 Brits Critics’ Choice prize, which is often seen as a forecaster of future success.

The award, chosen by U.K. industry experts, is only open to artists due to release their debut album the following year. Bay's debut is set to come out in the spring, while the musician will collect his award, designed by artist Tracey Emin, at the Brit Awards on Feb. 25.

Scouting Report: U.K. Folk Songwriter James Bay

While Bay might not be a particularly familiar face internationally, previous winners of the Critics' Choice Award have included the likes of Adele, who won the first prize in 2008, Ellie Goulding and Emeli Sande. The 2014 award went to Sam Smith, whose album In the Lonely Hour went on to become the U.K. best-selling debut of the year. Smith is now rumored to be singing the title song for the upcoming 24th James Bond film, Spectre.

This article originally appeared in THR.com.


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