Earlier this year we launched Keep Listening, a campaign supporting independent artists amid the global pandemic through the Sofar listening room. Over 200 artists and 80,000 audience members connected in the listening room this year to enjoy the music that brings us all together. Through audience donations and show fees, Keep Listening artists have received over $100,000 in generous donations from viewers around the world, which have helped offset the financial stresses of COVID-19.
As we wrap up 2020, we’re looking back on some of our favorite listening room performances of the year. From the feel-good to the moody and all of the 2020 moods in between, these artists were the light in a dark year for music-lovers around the world. Browse the listening shows to discover a new genre, a new favorite artist, and lots of incredible talent!
Subscribe to the Sofar YouTube channel to stay up-to-date with emerging artists and all of the incredible performances happening in the listening room!
This talented multi-instrumentalist fuses sounds from around the world with elegant and powerful melodies. His listening room blew us away, from the emotional musicality to the stunning background.
Get swept away by the lovely vocals and stunning lyrics that Sister is known for. Watch her purple-tinged show to see why she’s a Sofar favorite.
His sound is as big as his mustache. With smooth guitar and silky vocals, this Brazilian artist never fails to enchant his audience. In his hour-long listening room set, he wowed us (and the very active fans in the chat) over and over again.
New York City
You’ll find a little R&B, a lot of soul and plenty of honesty in Miette’s rhythmic music. Her sweet set had us in our feels and wanting to hear her voice on repeat (and look up her hair routine 💁).
This London-raised singer boasts soul-soaked tracks full of stunning vocals and lots of charisma. Someone once described his music as “sad with vibes” and we couldn’t agree more. Listen to his beautiful set to be blown away and to learn more about his songwriting inspiration.
This LA-based artist has carved out his own unique sound from his R&B roots and influences from the likes of Prince and Marvin Gaye. His swoon-worthy show had us dancing in our living rooms and smiling at our screens.
He’s got amazing vocals, impressive range, and all the charisma to blow audiences away. This seasoned Sofar alumni gave us the groove-filled show our hearts needed.
If you’re looking for a feel-good show that will have you moving, shaking, and smiling — this is it. Catch Chadwick’s amazing folk show with his brother, Will.
Passionate performers who cross genres, cultures, and sounds beautifully and seamlessly — their listening room stunned us. Brb, watching over again for the soothing guitar and enchanting vocals.
An upbeat pop artist whose music brings us back to the best first-crush, summer-road-trip, feels. Watch for good energy, great bops, and amazing vocals.
With $500 and a dream, this artist dropped out of high school, bought a one-way ticket to LA, and never looked back. Emeryld‘s vocally driven alternative tinged R&B is the perfect soundtrack to blast while riding around the city or for a moody night in.
This artist portrays the realities and beauties of Cuban culture with rhythmic songs that burst with life.
Featured in our Best of the Listening Room series, KORDELYA is a Mexican-American artist who blends trap-like production with dreamy electronic sounds. Her songs are a guaranteed mood boost and her performances always blow us away.
This singer-songwriter serenades audiences with elegant folk-pop. Like Phoebe Bridgers and Faye Webster? This artist is for you. Tune in for moody musical beauty and stay for the jaw-dropping golden hour view.
A South-African singer-songwriter with a distinct voice and unique sound that blends together soul, R&B, and pop, Manny Walters brought raspy, soulful vocals to the listening room. Brb, watching his show over and over again.
A singer-songwriter who journeys across genres with his soulful voice and distinctive guitar playing, Scarypoolparty’s magical guitar and sweet vocals are just what you need to soothe any stresses.
This artist blends the beauty of jazz and hip hop seamlessly. This show marked the finale of his (virtual) cross country tour with Sofar, where he raised money for the Youth Justice Coalition.
Soothing songs to cure your isolation heartaches. Flyte’s frontman Will showcases modernist sounds with incredible songwriting and lots of emotion. He’s been writing new songs during isolaition, and debuted a few of them during his listening room show!
An African-fusion band that uses their work to raise money and awareness to combat poverty — the Ganda boys have a special place in our hearts and have performed more Sofar shows than any other artists. This colorful livestream show has us counting down the days until we can see them IRL again.
Like the sounds of Norah Jones and Amy Winehouse? Tune in to hear singer-songwriter Madeline Edwards serenade the listening room with raspy, rich vocals. Pro-tip: Listen to the end for a stunning Childish Gambino cover.
Rio de Janeiro
This duo uses their voice to educate, raise awareness about the demands of the anti-racism social movement in Brazil, and over the weekend, they were the first couple to perform in the listening room Love Lockdown. They’re smiley, feel-good set (with a touch of social activism) did our hearts some good.
Like Oh Wonder and Sylvan Esso? You’re going to love the dreamy landscapes that song-writing duo M w S brought to the stage in this stripped-down, oh-so-good listening room set.
This sweet indie-soul duo couldn’t stop smiling through their listening room set, and neither could we. Their feel-good guitar and raspy vocals are good for the soul.
A collective of electronic and acoustic sounds, this three-piece band is full of talent and surprises. Looking to slow down your day? Sit down with their intimate, sweet set.
This group delivers pop without borders and creates colorful, energetic, and heady music. Their outdoor performance looks just as vibrant as it feels.
This singer-songwriter boasts of a sonic palette that is just as diverse as her multicultural background.
Meet contemporary Mexican pop and R&B singer, Noa Sainz. Like the smooth sounds of CZA? You’ll love Noa’s soulful performance.
A duo that blends equal parts country and rock into one of the freshest sounds to come out of Nashville.
Rio de Janeiro
Exploring ancestry and indigenous futurism, Kaê uses her voice to raise awareness and understanding. Her riveting performance is one not to miss!
Mackeson is an artist and producer whose music brings together all of our favorite pop and R&B magic. Check out this upbeat set for gorgeous harmonies and lots of dance-worthy beats.
This artist is a unique master of words whose imagery is guided by his interests including Martial arts, anime, video games and more. Don't miss out on his mesmerizing performance!
This Rotterdam-based singer-songwriter writes beautiful, intimate piano ballads, carried by her incredible, larger-than-life voice.
This Polish artist took their first steps in an old military casino, from which they took their name. They beautifully mix rock with blues, folk, and indie genres, creating a sound and style that’s all their own. Don't miss this performance for a stellar performance and some serious plant goals.
A songwriter, visionary, and all-round performer with a distinct voice and the ability to create music that speaks volumes. His musical background boasts a wealth of diverse experiences you won’t want to miss hearing! 10/10 for the music and 12/10 for the gorgeous production.
Singer-songwriter from the Dominican Republic known for her hit single “Café de las Ocho” and her incredible voice and melodies.