Songwriting contests for artists of any levels! Submit your songs to possibly receive massive prizes and exposure.

Recently, CMM artist Wes Mack entered and won the grand prize for Unsigned Only Music Competition with his song “Duet”.  Aside from the positive PR, nationwide exposure and title of Unsigned Only’s “Song of the Year”  Wes also pulled in some pretty sweet prizes. The grand prize being $10,000 cash, a Martin DRS2 Dreadnought Acoustic-Electric Guitar, a Reflex4 CD/DVD Dupliator from Discmakers, 50 sets of D’addario strings, A pair of CAD Audio MH510 headphones and several 1 year subscriptions to Artist and music directories. He also has the opportunity to get on the phone with some of the biggest labels in the USA as part of the Mentor program which will include Universal, Capitol, Big Machine, Sony, Atlantic and more. The value of these calls may exceed the value of any other prize received.
I did some research as to what other competitions there are for songwriters as well as what is required of the artist and what the prizes are. I was shocked to find that there are many that offered lots of great prizes and were basically open to ANYONE who had a song to send in. Some were based on a full production and mix of a song, some let you enter as many songs as you like, and some where based only on the lyrics to a song.  Here are some broken down highlights of some of the competitions that caught my eye:
The Un-Signed Only Song Writing Competition
This is an international competition for amateur and professional artists who are not signed to a major label record company.  This competition is about finding the next upcoming superstar and an artist who is the whole package. It has a vast mix of Judges from Cyndi Lauper to Iggy Pop completed with a full industry Mentor program. The grand prize receives a handful of other amazing prizes as mentioned above as Wes Mack There are also prizes for the first place winners in each category.  They are now taking song submissions for the 2014 contest! Submit your music today; for more information visit www.unsignedonly.com
The International Songwriting Competition
This is an international songwriting competition for both aspiring and established songwriters to have their songs heard in a professional, international arena. The contest is judged on creativity, originality, lyrics, melody, arrangement and overall like ability. The judges include Florida Georgia Line, Imagine Dragons and Tom Waits. The grand prize includes $25,000 cash, a Lowden F50 guitar, A full Marshall Stack guitar amp and more. For more information visit www.songwritingcompetition.com. 
The John Lennon Songwriting Contest
This is a international songwriting contest for both amateur and professional artists.  The songs are judged on originality, melody, composition, and lyrics by a panel of judges that include: The Black Eyed Peas, The Bacon Brothers, and The Veronicas.  It costs $30 US per song entry and the “Song of the Year” grand prize is $20,000 cash plus gear from Mackie, Avid, and Logic Alpha Channel.  The real kicker is that 24 other grand prize winners win over $9,000 worth of gear from some of the top brands including Epiphone, Vox, Boss, Audio-Technica, and more!
for more information visit www.jlsc.com.
The USA songwriting Competition
This is another international songwriting contest for both amateur and professional artists and is known as the world’s largest international songwriting competition. The judges include record label publishers, producers, A&R from Universal Music, Warner, EMI, Sony Music, and other distinguished professionals so it’s a great way to get your foot in the door to the larger music industry.  It costs $35 US per song entry however you’re able to send as many songs as you like. The Grand prize is over $50,000 in both cash and prizes, as well as radio play. The great thing about this contest is that winners are determined by some of the top music industry professionals.  for more information go to www.songwriting.net.
The Song of the Year Contest
This is another international songwriting contest open to both amateur and professional artists. The thing that stands out about his contest is that it is based 100% on the lyrics of the song. In some cases they will even chose a song from just a lyric sheet, however sending an Mp3 or video would certainly help your chances of winning. The grand Prize package is $30,000 cash as well as gear from Apple, Taylor guitars and Yamaha. For more information visit www.songoftheyear.com.
The Indie International Song Writing Competition
This is an international competition open to amateur and professional artists who have earned less than $10,000 in royalties in the span of their career. This is a great contest for artists who are just getting a start in the music business and are trying to expand their name because it filters out some of the bigger fish you could be up against. The top prizes include subscriptions to a variety of services that will help you with publishing, web hosting, music production, sales, marketing and more.  For more information visit www.indieinternational.com.
Overall, if you’re a songwriter for your own artist career, or submit tunes for others, these competitions are certainly worth your time. Even if you are not chosen as #1, a lot of these contests award “honourable mentions” which is a great tool to add to any songwriters or band’s biography. Take some time to choose what contest(s) would make most sense for you to submit for. Send in your songs, maybe win some free stuff, gain massive exposure and additional credit to your! Hope this has been helpful and good luck to all!
Posted in: Artist Advice, Artist Consulting, Indie Music Tips, Music Consulting.

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