Getty Images for GAY TIMES

Cat Burns, FLO and Nia Archives have each been nominated for the prestigious Rising Star award at next year’s BRITs.

“A BRITs Rising Star nomination was a major thing on my bucket list for me this year, so to have achieved that honestly means the world to me,” Burns said of the accomplishment.

The singer-songwriter came out as a member of the LGBTQ+ community in 2020, and has made inspirational music about her experiences as a queer Black woman.

In her cover story for GAY TIMES, she emphasised why she centres her identity in her tunes: “If you’re a Black woman, I want you to feel heard and seen.

“We are vulnerable people who are capable of having lots of emotions. And, being a Black queer woman adds a layer to that.”

The girl group FLO joins Cat in next year’s nominees.

They released their debut single, Cardboard Box, seven months ago and have gained legions of fans since, including global R&B royalty like SZA, Missy Elliott and Kelly Rowland.

“We all grew up watching the BRITs with our mums, and have been inspired by the girl groups and powerful female artists who have performed on that stage,” they said following the nomination.

“Girl groups are back and we want to pave the way for more artists to achieve their dreams. We hope that this is the first of many BRIT nominations for FLO.”

The third and final nominee is Nia Archives.

Her sound has been described as ‘soft-hearted lofi jungle’, drawing on a wide range of influences from her early life, including the reggae and lovers rock of her Jamaican heritage, gospel music from the Pentecostal churches of her hometown Leeds, and Manchester’s rave scene.

Her debut EP ‘Headz Gone West’ was released in August 2021, having been recorded by the self-taught producer in her bedroom.

She shared: “Words won’t describe how I’m feeling about being nominated…I really never thought it could happen to someone like me. I’m just so overwhelmed and happy right now.”

The Rising Star award has previously been won by the likes of Adele, Florence + the Machine and Sam Smith – all of whom have since gone on to see huge levels of success.

The winner will be announced on 8 December 2022.

You can watch the BRITs on 11 February 2023, live on ITV, streamed from the O2 Arena.