Today Born Music introduce Spotlight our new music project in association with Reverbnation. Every week over the coming year we will be premiering music by the best undiscovered and unsigned artists in the world right now, curated by our editors. Today marks the beginning of that new project with an artist that has set the bar high. We are proud to present Georgia’s SALIO.

If you’ve heard ‘Wayside’, ‘Let it Shine’ or any other of SALIO’s music before, you’re already in on one of the most exciting secrets in music right now. Though it’s inevitable that her phenomenally brilliant pop tunes won’t allow this much longer, it hasn’t been the easiest journey to get where she is now.

Hailing from The Republic of Georgia, Salio grew up in poverty, with restricted access to food, electricity and water. She began writing songs before she was ten years old, studying classical music and finding inspiration in artists like Janis Joplin, Etta James and Massive Attack. Thanks to her incredible talent, her music manifested itself as much more of a literal escape, leading to a “very successful time as a teenager in a band called Paparazzi, and [being] on television a lot”. Since then her music has come a long way, describing her old songs as “pretty cheap in comparison”, adding that “boys and love were the main subjects I was singing about back then.”

Her debut EP Lost World, was a more authentic, darkly serious development. Its concept being the slippery slope to becoming a lost cause, the fear that “if we do not change the current path we are on, we will see an unhappy world becoming sicker”. Tracks like the tragic ‘He Flew Away’ document the pain of a school friend who died outside her house after being shot, aged just 13. She’s also been working on a song called ‘Show Me The Window’ about a woman “who had been kidnapped and forced to be a drug addict and pushed into prostitution.” While the dark, emotional themes are eye-opening, Salio realises that change is impossible without hope, and is soon to be ‘releasing a song called ‘Keep On Dancing’ which is much more just about having fun and looking forward to a brighter future.’

Her aims as an artist are to “become influential enough to have people not only enjoy the music – which is obviously the most important thing – but also to have people start conjuring new ideas and perspectives which they may not have had before.” Her music contains powerful messages and stories desperate to be heard, all the while retaining the elements of a great song. Its infectious pop music with an agenda, and it couldn’t sound better.