Banbridge singer/songwriter Daniel Duke has beaten thousands of other acts to be named the UK’s Best Unsigned Male Act for 2016.
Almost 3,000 people took part in a public vote, with the 26-year-old seeing off nine other nominees with more than 20 per cent of the total.
“I’m absolutely over the moon to get this kind of recognition,” Daniel said.
“I was so happy just to be nominated but to have won the award is amazing, particularly from a great organisation like Best of British.
“Competitions like this are such fantastic opportunities for unsigned acts to gain traction and exposure and that’s really the most important part of rising through the music industry.”
Launched in 2012, the Unsigned Music Awards have now seen more than 40,000 music fans cast their vote including celebrities such as folk star Frank Turner and international footballer Gareth Bale.
The awards - this year sponsored by Vocalzone - are hosted by Best of British Unsigned (BoB Unsigned), the UK’s number one website for ‘Unsigned Music’ and supplies a weekly radio show to 70FM stations in 15 countries.
Daniel began playing and writing music in 2001 and went full time after his memorable appearances on BBC One’s The Voice UK in 2015. Since then he has toured all over the UK and even as far as New York and San Francisco.
This year Daniel also took home the ‘Unpublished Prize’ in the Unsigned Only Music Competition and has now signed a deal with a US publisher to have his music placed in primetime network TV shows, as well as writing new material specifically for broadcast.
“This is a really exciting opportunity and something I’ve always dreamed of so I’m chuffed to bits it’s happened. You might hear my songs popping up on some major US TV shows soon,” he added.
After the success of his debut album this year, Daniel and his twin brother James are hard at work in the studio, writing and recording a second album, for release some time in 2017.
There’s also an Irish tour in the works and plenty more UK shows in the pipeline.
Daniel will be playing live at McKee Clock Arena, Bangor as part of the Magical Moments event on December 3.
Daniel’s debut album, Brother, is available on iTunes now.