The International Songwriting Competition 2015 is now open for entries! Whether you are a seasoned songwriting veteran, or a newcomer to the creative process, the International Songwriting Competition gives a platform to artists and musicians from all over the world, with the opportunity to win cash prizes and have songs listened to by industry professionals and renowned judges from across the vast spectrum of musical genres, styles and tastes:
‘The International Songwriting Competition (ISC) is an annual song contest whose mission is to provide the opportunity for both aspiring and established songwriters to have their songs heard in a professional, international arena. ISC is designed to nurture the musical talent of songwriters on all levels and promote excellence in the art of songwriting. Amateur and professional songwriters and musicians are invited to participate. ISC has the most prestigious panel of judges of all the songwriting and music contests in the world, offering exposure and the opportunity to have your songs heard by the most influential decision-makers in the music industry.'
Before September 10th 2015, the entry fee is $30 per song, after which the fee will be $35 per song until the final entry deadline on 5th November. You can enter through the post, online on the International Songwriting Website, or online via Sonicbids.
To celebrate the return of this annual feast of creativity and to inspire any potential future World Music winners, we take a look of some of the winners and other standout artists from the competition, as well as some of the world music judges responsible for the decision making at this year's competition!
Currently based in Nairobi, Burundian singer, composer and master drummer, Kidum Kibido took the top honours with this love song ‘Mapenza’. No stranger to success, 'Mapenza' also received the Kora award in 2012.
The name of Kidum's band, Bodaboda, translates as 'crossing borders', which is reflected in his own musical path. From singing in Kirindi in his early work, Kidum now sings in Swaihili, and recently French, Spanish and English to reach a wider audience. Having performed in Africa, the Middle East and North America, Kidum has also now received wider international attention as a result of his recognition from the ISC.
Moana Maniapoto took the top honours back in 2003 with ‘Moko’, a song about the contrast between western style tattoo with the traditional Maori art of moko.
Of her 2003 recognition Moana said:
'With so many entries and such prestigious judges, getting to the finals was a big enough thrill. I'm as proud of our 2nd place World Music spot as I was winning the ISC (2003). For independent artists whose songs 'don't fit the format,' ISC is an incredible confidence booster. So a big fat thank you from Scotty, Paddy and myself for honouring our songwriting and our language.”
Moana and the Tribe formed in 2002 and have taken their blend of Moari and contemporary styles to audeinces across the globe, yet remain rooted in the landscape, culture and experience of New Zealand. Alongside creating music, Moana Maniapoto is a documentary maker, working on titles such as 'Guarding the Family Silver', with her work i nthis field being screened at the National Geographic All Roads Film Festival. In recognition of her artistic output, Moana is a recipient of the New Zealand Order of Merit and the 2005 Te Tohu Mahi Hou a Te Waka Toi Award, for 'outstanding leadership and contribution to the development of new directions in Maori art.’
Moana gained accolades once more in 2014 with the song ‘Upokohue’
Saber Systeme are the inspiring example of how you don't have to be a long- established, internationally acclaimed artist to gain recognition in the ISC. The group received honourable mention from the judges in 2014.
Check out their DIY video for the electronica-folk blend of 'La Libertat', filmed in Peveragno, Northern Italy.
Internationally accalimed, multi-award winning saxophonist and band leader, Nigerian Idol TV Judge and Son of Afrobeat pioneer and legend Fela, Femi Kuti joins the panel of ISC Judges for 2014. Having been honed his skills in Egypt 80, Kuti formed his own band 'Positive Force' in 1986 and has since brought out 7 albums, with his latest,No Place For My Dream released in 2013.
Electronic dance fused with traditional Irish and West African music from the band formed during the mid-nineties by guitarist and producer Simon Emmerson. McNally (whistle, Keyboards, Bodhrán, accordion, production) and Russell (keyboards, producing, engineering, programming) are amongst the eclectic judges.
Capable of filling stadiums and festival mainstages with the sound of two fiery guitars, the Mexican duo lend their ear to the 2015 judging process.
For a full list of ISC judges, click here.