Sophie Francis (NL)
Plucked from obscurity at the tender age of 14, Sophie began charting her path from a school challenge, of all things. Asked to master a skill over nine months, Sophie decided that she’d put her musical acumen to task. She went to class to learn to DJ and, as she learned the technical side, she quickly realized there was something much more at her fingertips. She began to obsess about music and mixing, production and the art of it all. She felt the real pull of music and what it can do for people and suddenly this school project became the catalyst of a career. She booked her first residency around this time at a local bar called ‘Het Pumpke’ where she perfected her skills and, as she played for more and more people, the artist inside began to emerge. She realized that she could connect with people in a powerful way through music. She was hooked. As 2015 came to a close, Sophie was invited to South Africa for a tour where she performed on the mainstage of The Ruins Festival in St. Francis Bay, followed by a club show at The Coco Club in Cape Town, and rounding it all off with a fantastic appearance on Expresso a national TV show with 1.5 million viewers. Next stop, 2016 where Sophie discovered a label that was accepting new producers. She sent 3 un-mastered demos and the result was unprecedented. They wanted them all. The label worked with Sophie on co-production and turned the 3 demos into fully realized hits. The singles; ‘Drop Of A Dime’, ‘Up In This’ and ‘Bad Boy’ were released on Freeway Recordings, sub-label of 076 Records, at the beginning of 2016, and each reached Top 20 status on the Beatport Progressive-House chart. DJs supporting the records included; Tiësto, Quintino, Ummet Ozcan, Thomas Gold, Tritonal, Juicy M… and many others. The tracks were also added to rotation on NRJ and Tiësto’s Club Life worldwide radio show. Sophie’s 4th single ‘Annihilate’ was gifted to her growing fan-base as a thank you for their overwhelming support. Fans again surprised everyone by pushing the song to a viral status by logging a mind-boggling 2 million plays on Soundcloud. The summer of 2016 was very successful, performing mainstage for festivals of 35.000 people in Valencia, playing at top-ranked best clubs in the world by DJ Mag and gaining fan base after every single show. The season gave Sophie a special highlight when she was confirmed to play as the ‘New Discovery’ special guest which included performing at 15 shows at BCM Mallorca; the most important nights at this premium club and brought to prominence by alums such as; Steve Aoki, Oliver Heldens, and Nervo among others. Sophie was joined on stage by Martin Garrix where the pair performed an impromptu B2B set. Watch it here. The milestones continued in 2016 when Sophie released her first vocal track ‘Walls’, on Powerhouse Music. ‘Walls’ entered the playlists of national Dutch radio stations (538, SlamFM, 3FM) and received a staggering 94% vote of ‘likes’ from listeners on 538 and broke into the Top 30 on the Dutch Airplay chart. ‘Walls’ was followed by the release of ‘Don’t Stop’, a club track on the Dirty Dutch imprint. The song entered the top 15 on Beatport’s chart, and was premiered by David Guetta and supported by many international DJs. With the new year of 2017 rolling in, a new label came calling and, in late January, Sophie signed a deal with Spinnin’ Records. Her first single, ‘Without You’ was released in February and included a unique and quirky video that you can watch here. Her follow up single Lovedrunk was released in May and features a powerful vocal punch that harkens back to the raspy grit of Janis Joplin. Spinnin’ has made it clear that Sophie is a priority for them and have included her on the Spinnin’ Sessions in Miami and their stage at Tomorrowland in Belgium. Speaking of Miami, Sophie was thrilled to perform at her first US show at none other than the Ultra Music Festival at Worldwide stage, where she blew both the crowd and live stream audiences away. Thousands of new fans were made after her performance taking to social media to declare her set as one of the best performances at Ultra2017 and it cemented her new status as a festival headliner. After her set, Sophie was named by Billboard Magazine as one of Ultra Music Festival’s Top 5 Female Performances. You can watch the full report here. It was also around this time that Sophie was named to the prestigious “Top 25 Most Influential Artists Under 25” by Spotify NL. She’s joined by fellow artists Martin Garrix and Oliver Heldens among others. Check it here. Having a Zen-like mastery of work is paying off for Sophie. She’s a bona-fide rockstar on stage making crowds of people experience a kind of musical nirvana that is epic to watch. They get her because she gets them, and that’s a gift only a real DJ can give. Sophie Francis graduated high school last year and has been touring internationally with already a huge popularity rate in Asia where she has played at Ultra Korea, Ultra Beijing, Ultra Japan, EDC Asia and a huge amount of awesome club shows. Of course the summer is filled with top festivals around the world including; Palmesus in Norway, Parookaville in Germany, and Tomorrowland in Belgium to name a few. Sophie Francis released ‘Stay Up’, which has received over 13 million streams. Her latest releases ‘Weekend Love’, ‘Lose My Mind’ and ‘On My Way’, cause for a total of 40 million streams on Spotify. She will continue to light the spark and release a lot of new tracks these coming months. We can’t wait to see what is coming next for this amazing young star.