The BRITs today reveal Sam Smith is the winner of this year’s Critics’ Choice Award, with Ella Eyre and Chlöe Howl as runner ups.

2013 has been an incredible year for the 21-year-old singer/songwriter. Coming to public attention after featuring on Disclosure’s big breakout hit last autumn ‘Latch’, Sam went on to work with Naughty Boy on the global smash hit No. 1 single ‘La La La’. This was followed by the release of his critically acclaimed solo EP ‘Nirvana’. February 2014 will see the release of his debut single ‘Money On My Mind’ as well as his own headline tour. Sam has recently signed a deal with Capitol Records in the US and his debut album is expected in Spring.

Sam said: “I’m completely overwhelmed! To see my name alongside the list of former winners, artists I admire so much it, is incredible. What an amazing Christmas present. Thank you!”

Sam will be presented with this award at ‘The BRITs Are Coming’ nominations announcement on Thursday 9th January. The nominations, hosted by Nick Grimshaw, will be filmed at ITV Studios and broadcast as a standalone TV show called ‘The BRITs Are Coming’ on ITV on Thursday 9th January. This show will feature a number of special performances as well as a performance from Sam Smith.

The Critics’ Choice Award is chosen by a team of experts including the music editors of national newspapers, key music and lifestyle magazines and music websites plus the heads of music at major radio and music TV stations. The Award is open to artists signed to a label who are set to release their debut albums in 2014 and over 100 artists from a range of genres were considered for the award.

Since launching in 2008 the Critics’ Choice Award has continued to successfully highlight and identify future British recording talent before it happens. Not only have previous winners enjoyed incredible domestic success but also international acclaim and collectively, the winners, to date, have sold in excess of 13 million albums worldwide.

Past Critics’ Choice Winners:

2008 – Adele
2009 – Florence & The Machine
2010 – Ellie Goulding
2011 – Jessie J
2012 – Emeli Sandé
2013 – Tom Odell

To celebrate the ongoing successes of the Critics’ Choice Award, Universal Music will be releasing a Critics’ Choice compilation on the 6th of January featuring all the artists that have been shortlisted since launching in 2008, including the winners of each year. The iTunes exclusive version will also include bonus live and remix tracks. Full track-listing below.
Critics’ Choice – The Album
All The Nominated Artists 2008 – 2014

01. Sam Smith – Nirvana
02. Ella Eyre – Deeper
03. Chlöe Howl – No Strings
04. Adele – Chasing Pavements
05. Florence + The Machine – You’ve Got The Love
06. Ellie Goulding – Starry Eyed
07. Jessie J – Price Tag
08. Emeli Sandé – Read All About It, Pt. III
09. Tom Odell – Another Love
10. Foals – Cassius
11. Duffy – Mercy
12. Little Boots – Remedy
13. White Lies – To Lose My Life
14. Delphic – Doubt
15. Marina and the Diamonds – Are You Satisfied?
16. James Blake – Limit To Your Love
17. The Vaccines – If You Wanna
18. Maverick Sabre – I Need
19. Michael Kiwanuku – Home Again
20. AlunaGeorge – Attracting Flies
21. Laura Mvula – Green Garden

iTunes exclusive version will also include 5 bonus tracks:
01. Florence + The Machine – Dog Days Are Over (BRIT Nomination Live Version 2009)
02. Ellie Goulding – Starry Eyed (BRIT Nomination Live Version 2010)
03. Emeli Sandé – Next To Me (BRIT Nomination Live Version 2012)
04. Sam Smith – Nirvana (Until The Ribbon Breaks Re-Imagination)
05. Chlöe Howl – No Strings (Moto Blanco Remix)
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