Each Friday, Billboard presents “Bubbling Under,” a weekly look at new and noteworthy acts making their way toward Billboard chart success. Up this week: Franklin McKay, Tulisa, $auce and Earl Bynum.
In a rare case of conservative AC radio helping expose an unsigned artist, Ontario, native Franklin McKay is approaching the Adult Contemporary chart with “Destiny.” The pop singer/songwriter’s ballad is receiving its strongest support (aided by minimal independent promotion) at KWAV Monterey, Calif. (64 plays through Sept. 9, according to Nielsen BDS), and McKay is open to more. “I base my success on the premise that you need to believe in yourself and surround yourself with people that also believe in you,” he says. “After all, my all-time favorite movie is ‘Rudy’,” he adds with a chuckle.
2012’s British pop invasion (i.e., One Direction, the Wanted, Cher Lloyd) continues with the dance beats of Tulisa’s “Young.” After the singer – formerly of the vocal group N-Dubz and currently a judge on the U.K. edition of “The X Factor” – took “Young” to No. 1 on the Official U.K. Singles chart earlier this year, the track is closing in on Dance/Club Play Songs, supported by remixes by Gregor Salto, Vice, Expanda and Hector Fonseca. Tulisa is currently at work on her All Around the World/Island Records debut album, due later this year in the U.K. The set is scheduled to include collaborations with the-Dream, Toby Gad, Rico Love and hit songwriter Diane Warren.
Indianapolis rapper $auce (a euphemism for money) looks to cash in on the R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart with “Back It Up” (Game Face), the first single from his forthcoming mixtape, A.D.I D.A.$. (All Day I Dream About $auce), which is set for a fourth quarter release. WJUC Toledo, Ohio, is paying him the most respect with 171 spins to date for the cut, according to BDS.
Stellar Award-nominated arranger/songwriter Earl Bynum fronts the Mount Unity Choir, whose “Bless the Name of the Lord” (K.W. Brown Ministries) gains momentum just below the radio-fueled Gospel Songs chart. BDS logged airplay at 16 of the 44 stations monitored for the chart in the Sept. 3-9 tracking week. Bynum is also the music minister at Mt. Lebanon Baptist Church in Chesapeake, Va., and hosts “On Stage with Earl Bynum,” a syndicated radio show on the Rejoice Musical Soulfood Network.