WAM SONG OF THE YEAR Making tracks

The search for WA’s most talented songwriters has kicked off again with the launch of West Australian Music (WAM)’s Song of the Year 2021 competition presented by Act Belong Commit.

First held in 1989, WAM’s Song of the Year showcases the intricate craft of songwriting that lies at the heart of WA’s diverse, contemporary music gems. Open to all ages, levels and genres, the competition provides an opportunity for WA songwriters to have their music heard by industry professionals and bolster their careers with over $45K in prizes on offer. With previous winners of the competition including Stella Donnelly, Beni Bjah, Kučka, Little Birdy, Abbe May, Luke Steele and Carla Geneve, WAM is excited to once again share this career-propelling opportunity with the WA music community.

The competition is open to all West Australian songwriters, bands, and producers now until Thursday, February 11. Song of the Year 2021 features 17 categories, including; Blues/Roots, Country, Electronic, Experimental, Folk, Global, Hip Hop/New R&B, Jazz, Heavy/Metal, Punk/Hardcore, Pop, Rock and Act Belong Commit, plus extra categories for Schools 14 Years & Under, Schools 15-18, Outstanding Indigenous and Outstanding Regional. All winners will be celebrated at the WAM Song of the Year Awards Night, with one song selected to win the coveted grand prize.

The returning Act Belong Commit song category provides an opportunity to reflect on this message of positive mental health, welcoming songs of any genre that explore the relationship between mental wellbeing and the Act Belong Commit message – from talking about the importance of community and connectedness, the journey to improve your mental health and lifestyle, or the enjoyment in having attained this.

To help songwriters engage with the message, WAM and Act Belong Commit are presenting a series of free Song Sessions workshops and forums at Vinyl Café, featuring award-winning WA songwriters crafting a new song together. The fortnightly songwriting workshop series features collaborations between Grace Barbé and Timothy Nelson; Ofa Fotu and Adrian Dzvuke; Carla Geneve (pictured above) and Sam Blitvich (Sly Withers); and Hyclass and Kruger James; and kicks off on Thursday, January 28.

This year’s competition sees an incredible set of prizes on offer to support winners in their future music endeavours. Entrants also have the opportunity to receive personalised feedback on their songs from leading music minds Anna Laverty, Joel Quartermain (Eskimo Joe), Sam Ford (Tone City Recording Studio) and Tenille Elkins (APRA AMCOS/NM TAFE) via the song evaluation option.

WAM Song of the Year’s Grand Prize includes:

  • $3,000 cash
  • 100 x colour vinyl 7-inches pressed courtesy of XVinylX and Vinyl Café
  • Radio ad campaign from RTRFM
  • A two-day recording and production session with Best Sound Engineer/Producer (studio) WAM Award recipient, Andy Lawson of Debaser Studio
  • A national media servicing campaign for a single or release through Firestarter Music
  • 250 posters distributed by The Poster Girls
  • The opportunity for a publishing and sync licensing deal with Perfect Pitch Publishing, plus a tutorial in publishing and licensing and ongoing industry mentoring
  • A complimentary one night’s stay at the Alex Hotel
  • Four x 3-month Spotify premium subscription codes
  • A $100 voucher for Mega Music
  • Photo shoot including photo editing from music photographer Cam Campbell from @placeorpoint
  • WAMFest performance offer
  • Two passes to WAMCon

The first runner-up will receive a $1,500 cash prize towards their next career move, and a $100 voucher to spend at Mega MusicThe second-runner up will receive a $1,000 cash prize and a $100 voucher for Mega Music, plus both runners-up will each receive two passes to WAMCon and a 3-month premium subscription to Spotify.

Category prizes include a $500 cash prize and a free day of recording or mixing with some of WA’s best recording engineers and producers.

Entries for WAM Song of the Year 2021 presented by­ Act-Belong-Commit are open now until Thursday, February 11 via the Song of the Year website. For more information about Song Sessions, head to wam.org.au.

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