Rolling Stone Australia cover star Tones And I is doing her bit to help emerging artists affected by the global COVID-19 pandemic.
Taking to Instagram Stories, the Melbourne-based global chart topper has revealed her plans to help artists who have been playing small gigs or busking prior to COVID.
“If you are an artist that was working their ass off playing at small pubs or busking before this pandemic hit. If you have original mus that you’re struggling to showcase. Please respond, I want to put you to the front,” Tones And I (real name Toni Watson) wrote on Instagram.
Toni Watson plans to mobilise her more than 700K Instagram followers by featuring music from local artists in need. “I will post a new ORIGINAL song by a new artist every day for 20 days,” she wrote.
In the next post in the story Watson clarified that artists are not to send her cover songs: “I wanna showcase real creative artists Not just singers!” she wrote.
Tones And I’s latest ambition to use her platform in a positive way comes from a place quite close to home. Watson got her start busking on the streets of Melbourne and Byron Bay and was discovered when her co-manager Jackson Walkden-Brown stopped to watch her perform one night in Byron.
Walkden-Brown was headed to dinner with his wife when they stopped to watch her and later skipped dessert to rush back and join the growing crowd. Walkden-Brown slipped his business card in with a tip, she signed to Lemon Tree Music, and the rest is history.
Tones And I released her latest single “Ur So F**iNg cOoL” back in May after months of teasing. Describing the track to audiences at her Laneway performances back in February, and during an interview with Nova’s Ben & Liam, Tones explained that the inspiration came from attending a party in LA with her assistant Abby.
“One girl came up to me and she said, ‘I’m from the TV show Teen Wolf, I don’t know if you’ve heard of it.’ And I said to her, ‘I’ve never seen the show, but I am sure you are terrific.’ Other than that they didn’t really speak to us, so after 45 minutes we got an Uber, went back to the hotel, got Uber Eats and watched Netflix.”