Unsigned soul singer Ray BLK has been named the winner of BBC Music Sound Of 2017 following in the footsteps of Adele and Ellie Goulding.

The Sound Of list aims to predict the most exciting new talent for the year ahead and the 22-year-old from Catford, south London, said she was "honoured" to have the number one spot.

In an interview with the BBC, the first unsigned artist ever to top the list described how she had learned so much from living in south London and the experience had made her the woman she is today.

Ray said: "2016 has been such a whirlwind.

"I don’t think I could have had a better year."

Ray spoke about the many societal pressures on women and said she wanted her music to "empower" women to live their lives they want.

Reflecting a rise of female talent in R&B and grime, four out of the top five selected are black British women.  

No one is Ray’s family were musical but from a young age she knew she would end up in the music business.

Her talent was spotted in primary school and she was picked to go for the Gifted and Talented scheme for music, during which she had her first studio session and her passion grew from there.

Thinking about the year ahead, Ray said: "This time next year I just want to be a better artist, focused on making more good music.

"I’d just like to be better."