Here are more artists to put on your radar in 2011. As with yesterday’s list, some of these artists you may already know about. If not, you heard it here first!

Red Cafe :: is a Brooklyn-based rapper signed to Diddy’s Bad Boy Records. He signed with several major labels over the years, including Arista, Capitol Records and RCA but never released an album. In 2010, he dropped a mixtape called No Witnesses that received heavy buzz. “Hottest in the Hood” got a lot of play. My personal favorite track from Red Cafe is “So Easy (Remix)”. It samples Anita Baker’s hit “Caught Up in the Rapture.” Red Cafe is set to release a solo project on Bad Boy this year. But  the last I checked, Bad Boy is still run by Diddy which means you just never know if Red’s album will come out or not. Either way, I think Red Cafe is the leader of the new school of NY rappers.

Ellie Goulding :: is a British pop artist on Polydor Records who released two records in the UK in 2010. Her debut Lights was re-released as Bright Lights with 6 extras songs including the standout single “Starry Eyes”. Ellie topped the BBC Sound of 2010 poll, which showcases the critics, broadcasters and music industry insiders’ top choices for rising stars and artists for the coming year. She also won the Critics’ Choice Award at the 2010 BRIT Awards which makes her the second artist to win both the poll and win the Critic’s Choice award in the same year, after Adele won both awards two years before. This year Ellie will take her first U.S. tour. She is also releasing her collaboration with UK hip hop/R&B artist Tinie Tempah (another artist to watch this year.) Ellie has that happy danceable, pop sound a la Kylie Minogue or Madonna. If you are into dance pop, Ellie is one to watch.

Tinie Tempah :: is a British rapper from Plumstead, South London. His debut album, Disc-Overy, debuted at number-one in October 2010 and was preceded by the number-one singles “Pass Out” and “Written in the Stars” and the top-five singles “Frisky” and “Miami 2 Ibiza”. He toured with Kanye West and Jay-Z collaborator Mr. Hudson and received rave reviews on the European festival circuit last summer. His music is part hip hop, part drum-n-bass. In my opinion, he’s the new, slightly less grimey Dizzee Rascal.

The Suzan :: is a Japanese pop band getting a lot of buzz at the moment. They are… just see for yourself.

Francis and The Lights :: Francis Farewell Starlite is a NYC-based performer and songwriter who added the term “and the Lights” to his stage name  in direct reference to the lights on a stage and pixels on a computer screen. Francis and the Lights made news in 2008 when Jake Lodwick, founder of Vimeo, invested $100,000 into Francis giving the band freedom to shop their music and take their career to a new level while still maintaining a large degree of creative control — the chief criticism of the current record label business model. In 2010, Francis and the Lights released It’ll Get Better. He also produced tracks on Drake’s critically acclaimed debut and toured with the Toronto rapper. Francis is set to release a new project this year. I first heard about Francis and The Lights while reading soul crooner Eric Roberson’s blog. Francis is known for his fancy footwork on stage. At around 1;55 in this video, he gets down!

Tomorrow, Part 3 of “ARTISTS TO PUT ON YOUR RADAR IN 2011.”

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