'Incredible talent' Phoebe Austin signs with music mogul Qadree El-Amin
PUBLISHED: 16:47 20 September 2019 | UPDATED: 17:25 20 September 2019
A young singer/songwriter from Sudbury who draws inspiration from Ed Sheeran and Taylor Swift has just been signed by Michael Jackson's former manager.
Phoebe Austin, 14, is now working with music mogul Qadree El-Amin, who is known for managing some of the industry's biggest stars, including Michael Jackson, his sister Janet Jackson, Boyz ll Men, Vanessa Williams, Teddy Riley, Blackstreet and Lou Bega.
It comes after the budding star, a regular performer at the LeeStock Music Festival in Long Melford, secured a record deal with Shlepp Entertainment Ltd/Shlepp Records last year. It was Stevie Eagle E (Stephen Ellis), head of the label, who brought her to the attention of Qadree El-Amin, of SouthPaw Entertainment.
Phoebe said: "It was amazing to hear from the record label he wanted to speak to me about the possibility of signing and what he thinks he could do for me.
"That was just amazing in itself and when we had the conversation he was really enthusiastic and he said he would really, really like it if we could sign the contract.
"It was absolutely amazing. To hear all the people he's worked with - they are so respected in the industry. It was a really big deal for me."
As reported on entertainment news websites, Qadree, who is based in the US, said: "I could find no fault with her, no reason not to sign her. Her music, writing, poise, and vibe have the 'X-Factor'.
"I like to think I know the 'X-Factor' when I see and hear it and all this so young. I was already hooked before I spoke to her and her mother, but speaking to them both sealed the deal."
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Phoebe, who taught herself piano and guitar, said she draws her musical inspiration from many people, but in particular Taylor Swift, musicals and "100%" fellow Suffolk singer/songwriter Ed Sheeran.
She was runner-up with her first single 'Thinking' at last year's Bury Songwriters Competition, which boasts Ed as a previous entrant.
READ MORE: Budding teenage singer/songwriter celebrates year of achievements
Mum Claire said: "She has been singing all her life. When she was five her birthday party was High School Musical-themed. I knew she was an incredible talent in song-writing, singing and playing guitar when she was eight or nine.
"When she was nine she entered the Bures Music Festival, B-Fest. She was the youngest contestant and performed her own original song, winning best newcomer. That was the first time she performed on a stage. Since then it's been non-stop really."
She said everyone always describes Phoebe's singing as "very mature for her age" - she wrote her first single 'Thinking' when she was 12.
The teenager's new single will be coming out in the next couple of months and she is currently working on her album.
Claire said: "What we spoke to Qadree about was really pushing that next single and he's going to help us with that and with his contacts in America, and make her much more of a success in America."
Phoebe is home schooled and is also doing a music media course at West Suffolk College.
For more information about her and to hear her music search for her on Facebook - her page has more than 5,000 followers.