Welcome to Emerging Artists Spotlight, the Billboard series where we highlight a musician or band who has recently made their debut on the Emerging Artists chart. Whether they are new to the industry, or have been around for a while but are just starting to have a chart impact, the intention is to showcase where they are here and now. This week’s pick is English indie pop singer-songwriter Cavetown, who debuted at No. 42 on the chart dated April 11 thanks to the success of his first major label studio album Sleepyhead.
Hailing from the U.K., indie pop singer-songwriter Cavetown (real name: Robin Skinner) is ready to make a name for himself stateside.
Though Cavetown, 21, makes his Billboard chart debut this week, thanks to his new LP Sleepyhead, he’s been cultivating a following by independently releasing music for nearly a decade on YouTube and Bandcamp.
He dropped his debut self-titled album in 2015, and then followed it up with 16/04/16 and Lemon Boy in 2016 and 2018, respectively. He’s also begun establishing himself as a coveted touring act, selling out shows around the world.
Sleepyhead, his first major label release via Sire Records, opens at No. 12 on the Heatseekers Albums chart, No. 53 on the all-genre Top Album Sales chart and No. 18 on Americana/Folk Albums with 3,000 equivalent album units earned in the tracking week, according to Nielsen Music/MRC Data.
Cavetown’s music, a blend of indie and bedroom pop, touches on topics that are deeply personal, something that he acknowledges helps him makes sense of the world around him.
“While I recognize it’s such a special gift to be able to positively impact people around the world with my music, I ultimately write it all for myself,” he tells Billboard. “It helps me to use my own songs as a way to say things to myself which I need to hear, reassure and validate my own feelings, or help myself to appreciate the good things around me.
“And the fact that the tunes are able to do the same for others only makes the messages I write shine brighter for me,” he adds. “Writing a song is like creating a friend.”
Learn more about Cavetown below.
Name: Robin Skinner
Hometown: Oxford and Cambridge, United Kingdom
Recommended Cavetown track: “Sweet Tooth,” from Sleepyhead
Outside of the music: “I’m spending a lot of time working hard on my Animal Crossing: New Horizons town. I just recently got the Able Sisters shop, which is honestly the main thing getting me up in the mornings.
I also enjoy painting a lot — it calms my nerves and I plan on doing some more pieces during quarantine. Since Minecraft is another one of my favorite games, I also decided to create a YouTube gaming channel. I find it fulfilling to turn a pastime into something creative and it’s keeping me in contact with my friends while we have to be apart.”
What’s next: “I’ll keep writing as long as my brain allows. I’m excited to work with some more artists, writing together or helping them produce! I already have a few new songs in my head which I can’t wait to share with the world, but the world and I will have to be patient for now.”
Past Emerging Artists Spotlights: Benee | Breland | Caitlyn Smith | Spanish Love Songs | AJJ | Sleep On It | (Sandy) Alex G | Knocked Loose | Charly Bliss | Tank and the Bangas | Bear’s Den | J.S. Ondara | Delain | Mabel | Kiana Lede | I Am They