Sam Fender was nowhere to be seen as The Brit Awards announced its nominees for the 2023 accolades.
The North Shields star had a year to remember at the prestigious ceremony in 2022 with three nominations - eventually winning the award for Best British Rock/Alternative Act. It was a moment to remember for the people of the North East as the local lad thanked his hometown and famously brought the award back to the Low Lights Tavern in a merry state the following day.
Fender fans were hoping to see the star’s name in and amongst the nominees as The Brit Awards unveiled its shortlists for this year’s categories, despite the ‘Seventeen Going Under’ focusing on touring and recording music rather than releasing new tracks over the past 12 months.
However, it wasn’t to be for the Geordie hero, who is gearing up to play two iconic nights at St. James’ Park in June. Given that Fender’s last record came out in 2021, and was duly acknowledged at last year’s awards, the most likely category for the ‘Hypersonic Missiles’ star to crop up would have been the Best British Rock/Alternative Act after his win last year.
Instead, The Brit Awards chose to name Tom Grennan, Arctic Monkeys, Nova Twins, Tom Grennan and Wet Leg in that category. One of those five will have their name etched under Fender’s when the ceremony takes place on Saturday, February 11.
Whilst some fans online asked where Fender was amongst the nominees and said he was ‘robbed’, others reasoned that 2022 wasn’t a year of new music for the singer.
It isn’t unheard of for artists without much new material in the previous year to be recognised by The Brit Awards. Dua Lipa is one such artist this year, nominated for Best Pop/R&B Act despite only releasing one single and a Calvin Harris collaboration.
Despite the lack of nomination, 2023 is set to be the biggest year yet for the North Tyneside artist. As well as those St. James’ Park shows, Fender is headlining TRNSMT in Scotland and new music is clearly on the way too.
Fender producer Dean Thompson posed for a photo behind the producer's screen and deck and confirmed that work is "underway" on Fender's third studio album. The next record will follow the first two critically acclaimed efforts Hypersonic Missiles and Seventeen Going Under.
Dean Thompson wrote: "Season's greetings to all! When I was a wee lad working at a studio in Newcastle I cut my teeth on a @solidstatelogic AWS console. We’re busy grafting away on album number 3 at the moment and we owe a HUGE thank you to @solidstatelogic for sending us some incredibly useful tools to help craft the record. It’s absolutely class to have things go full circle so thank you very very much indeed."
One person responded in the comments and said: "Merrily Christmas - best gift ever knowing the 3rd album is underway."
Others wrote "can't wait for some lovely new music" and "I like the sound of album three".