The 6th Annual Ultimate Singer-Songwriter Contest
Thursday- Sunday, January 23 - 26, 2014
We are thrilled to announce that The Ultimate Singer-Songwriter Contest 6 (TUSSC6) will take place at Waltz-Astoria during the last weekend of January, 2014 (1/23 - 1/26).
This 4-night event is the biggest songwriters event in New York City, drawing hundreds of contenders nationwide. Past judges include prominent music producers, music publication writers, TV producers, radio personalities, concert venue bookers, as well as established singer-songwriters in the industry.
1st Place: $1000 Cash, Trophy, Featured Show at Waltz-Astoria, Invitation to be a judge for TUSSC7
2nd Place: $300 Cash, Trophy, Show at Waltz-Astoria
3rd Place: $150 Cash, Trophy, Show at Waltz-Astoria
First Round: VIDEO SUBMISSION (December 1, 2013 - January 5, 2014)
- All interested singer-songwriters will need to submit a video, online application and $5 submission fee.
- The video should be of 1 song and no longer than 5 mins long.
- Submission will close at MIDNIGHT, Jan.5th.
- 60 Qualifiers and 30 Waitlisted Qualifiers will be announced at 6pm on January 10th, 2014.
Second Round: QUALIFYING ROUNDS (January 23, 24, 25, 2014)
- 20 Qualifiers will perform in person at Waltz-Astoria on each of the Qualifying Rounds.
- 2 Songs per performer, each song must be 5 mins or less.
- A panel of 3 judges will score each performer on their songwriting, performance, stage presence, and originality.
- Top 3 scorers will advance to the FINALS.
Third Round: FINALS (January 26, 2014)
- 9 Finliasts and 1 Wildcard (chosen by Waltz-Astoria regardless of score at the Qualifying Round) will perform the Finals Night LIVE at Waltz-Astoria.
- 3 songs per performer, each song must be 5 mins or less.
- The final decision will be up to the audience! Each audience member will be voting for their top 2 favorite artists.
- The finalists with the most votes will be crowned the Winners of The Ultimate Singer-Songwriter Contest 6.
- Singer-songwriter is a musician who write, compose, and sing their original songs including the lyrics and melodies.
- Video submitted for the First Round must be a live performance and less than 5 mins long. We DO NOT accept MVs and band performances.
- The participating songwriter may decide to have another performer to accompany him/her in the video submission, at the Qualifying Round and Finals.
- No Special affects, ie loops, pedals, etc, and no back up vocals are allowed.
- No unnecessary offensive language.
Qualifying Round 1
FINALISTS: ACE ELIJAH, JOSHUA GARCIA, VALERIE REAPER
OPEN TO PUBLIC: $8 Cover, 1 Drink Min.
6pm: Number Drawing
6:30pm-11pm: 20 Contestants will perform 2 original songs for a panel of 3 judges.
11:30pm: Top 3 Scorer will advance to the FINALS!
Ace Elijah is a 25 year old songwriter & performer based out of Brooklyn, NY. His sound is rooted in the tradition of old songwriters like Irving Berlin and crooners like Nat King Cole & Frank Sinatra, but done in a modern and unique way..
Lyrically driven singer-songwriter and classically trained American dancer, Alex's music is similar to a mix between John Mayer, Jim Croce and Jack Johnson. Hallmarked by melodic stories from his personal journey; from Junior Olympic Ice Hockey Championships, to dancing in front of thousands, to the competitive world of public accounting, and eventually leaving each behind to begin the next chapter... It all makes its way into his songwriting.
Colorado born. San Francisco developed. New York refined. Brandon Glasgow has been writing and performing for over 10 years from the west coast to the east coast. Influenced by rock, pop, southern blues, funk, soul, and poignant songwriting, he writes to tell stories and create melodies that audiences will come back to again and again.
Constantine Caviris is a New York singer songwriter. He draws musical influence heavily from the outlaw country movement of the ‘70s. Constantine enjoys building his own guitars out of cigar boxes and frequently uses his main guitar, Smokey, modeled after a Telecaster, in his performances. Constantine is working with Roslyn Heights music producer/engineer James Sabella (Marcy Playground, Nine Days, Public Enemy) to enhance his performance and record a demo.
Danny Leonard was raised in Queens, NY to an Israeli mother and a Russian father. With this mix, he was exposed to a wide variety of music growing up over the years, that influences the music he makes today. Inspired by modern artists such as John Mayer, Damien Rice, Jack Johnson, and many more, Danny blends Blues, Pop, Folk, Jazz and Americana to create his own unique flavor."
Gerry Rosenthal, a musician and actor from Jersey City, NJ began writing, playing, and performing professionally from a very young age, singing and touring the U.S. and Europe as a boy chorister in the St. Thomas Choir of Men and Boys. He has appeared on television's Law And Order, and films such as Liberty Heights and Finding Forrester, in addition to voicing the main character in the video game Bully from Rockstar Games. He plays regularly with his band Big Wake, as well as numerous other bands locally and throughout the country. Visit www.gerryrosenthal.com for more info!
Henry Colle is a young singer-songwriter from Queens, NY. At twenty years old he has found a style encompassing all sorts of musical influence including R&B, folk, and acoustic pop.
Henry's music is a combination of his application of theory and honest, emotional storytelling coming together in an incredibly unique way. You can find Henry online and in cafes around the New York City area.
Ian Romer's songs mix indie rock energy with hints of folk and classical elements. The 22 year old songwriter, a native of Pleasantville, NY, has been playing in bands and as a solo act around the city since 2008. Currently, Ian has been recording a new EP to be released at the beginning of March titled LONG POND. Visit www.ianromer.com for more info.
Jackie Reilly was born and raised in Readington, New Jersey. After spending most of her life devoted to musical theatre, she began looking for other creative outlets. What she didn't know was how far that simple decision would take her! 4 years and 4 countries later, Jackie has put together a collection of songs that are honest, quirky, and joyful. Currently, she resides in Astoria, New York where she has spent the last year focused on writing and performing her original material!
Jaclyn Shaw is a singer-songwriter from the New York City area, who has been performing consistently for the past eight years. She is known for solo performance of her original music, which comprises of the combination of her full booming classical guitar and soulful mezzo-soprano vocal range. Jaclyn's lyrical content is poetic and her chord progressions are beautifully complex. Nonetheless, Jaclyn's material is relatable and accessible to listeners who enjoy experiencing their emotions from the outside in.
Jessica Rowboat grew up in a hill station near New Delhi and began writing at the age of nine. She attended LaGuardia High School for the Performing Arts where she was trained in chamber music, gospel, jazz hands, theatre, and song writing. Her music ties them all together in a folky blend. She is fondest of deliberate disconcerting situations, Wolverine, and Gouda cheese. She is not very fond of serious conversation. Jessica lives in Queens, New York with her husband and their Shih Tzu, Frodo.
Joshua Garcia is a folk-singer-songwriter whose music and writing style draw from the influences of his heroes Woody Guthrie, Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash. Originally hailing from Los Angeles, Joshua now resides in Brooklyn, N.Y.
Kandice is a Portland Oregon native who just moved to New York this past September. She works as a pastry cook in TriBeCa but her biggest passion in life is and always has been music. She started playing piano at the age of 7 and picked up the guitar a few years later. Since then she has been writing songs and playing shows in the Portland area, but she is now ready to take on the big city and show the music world of New York just what she has to offer!
Kerry Michelle Mac
Kerry Michelle Mac is a twenty year old, acoustic singer songwriter hailing from Flushing, Queens. She is currently a junior at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts, studying acting. A month ago, Kerry released her debut EP, Honestly, which can be found on iTunes and Spotify. Kerry has been writing original songs since the age of six and hopes to give all her listeners a hunger for life and feeling everything there is to feel.
My name is Katelynn Tomney and I am a singer-songwriter from New York, NY. I play piano and guitar, and play at a variety of places in and around New York City. I also volunteer with Musicians on Call and play in hospitals around the city for patients because I believe music feeds the soul. My biggest musical influences for writing songs come from soul music, r+b, jazz, blues, and singer/songwriter types. I am currently rehearsing and recording my first EP.
My music can be found at : http://www.soundcloud.com/kate-tomney http://www.youtube.com/ktomne1
Luca Di Fabio
My name is Luca Di Fabio, I'm originally from Italy but I spent this last year in London.
I started playing piano when I was 8 and never stopped ever since.
I switched to guitar at 14 and vocal technique.
I moved to London in september 2013 to attend a songwriting course. I stayed over till i decided to move to NYC a month ago.
After their crititically acclaimed band “The Vinyl Addicts” disbanded in 2008, Brian Murray and Anthony DeFeo began writing some new songs in an apartment on Montgomery street in Brooklyn’s Crown Heights. The songs were catchy, unapologetically pop and riddled with harmonies and introspective lyrics. Over time, the new band “Montgomery Streets” became known for their energetic and ever changing live shows. In 2013 they released their first EP “Damn Girl” which boasts a fuller rock sound while still being true to their acoustic roots.
Nehedar is the work of LIC songwriter Emilia Cataldo who has been performing in the NYC underground music scene for 10 years and has self released 6 (almost 7) albums of original material. Her music has been featured in the web series "Strike Anywhere Matches" and her animated music video for "My Roommate is an @$$clown" was selected for the Libelula Film Festival in Spain.
Nicholas Howard's music, if you have to give it a label, might be called Urban Soul. Urban, because he's New York through and through, grew up in Queens. And Soul, because his music comes from that place where we all live, whether it's New York City or Podunk, Nowhere. His music is different from what you've heard before, and yet, because it comes from a soulful place, once you've heard his music, you'll recognize it as your music, too.
Valerie Reaper layers a powerhouse voice with thought-provoking lyrics. A nominee for the Hoboken Music Awards and a contender in last year's Ultimate Singer Songwriter Contest, she weaves folk, rock and blues into her dynamic and soulful sound. She has spent the past two years making New York her home, as conveyed in her band's upcoming EP, Cityscapes. For more info, wait a week and then visit http://www.valeriereapermusic.comh, or just come say hello. She's pretty friendly.
Qualifying Round 2
FINALISTS: JEFF JACOBS, SARA CARBONE, RAFE HOLT
OPEN TO PUBLIC: $8 Cover, 1 Drink Min.
6pm: Number Drawing
6:30pm-11pm: 20 Contestants will perform 2 original songs for a panel of 3 judges.
11:30pm: Top 3 Scorer will advance to the FINALS!
Chris has been performing original songs for ten plus years. After college, he moved to Japan and bought a Martin guitar with his first paycheck. He began to write songs infused with the folk music of his parent's record collection and more recent acoustic genre of the modern unplugged singer-songwriter. In 2002, Chris returned to the Hudson Valley and began collaborating with another singer-songwriter, Lance Middlebrook, collectively forming Wooden Nickel. Inspired by Americana, bluegrass and other traditional acoustic music, Chris continues to perform with his friends in Wooden Nickel and as a solo artist in the New York area.
Christopher King is a songwriter hailing from Asbury Park, NJ. His songwriting focuses on strong characters and narratives involving those celebrating first love, mourning lives lost, who find everything they are looking for, or travel the world to find what's left. His sound is a mix of folk, rock, blues, pop, and metal. Recently, he has been featured on NBC's Jimmy Lloyd Songwriter Showcase, in the Huffington Post, and has been a featured artist for the Inspired Word Showcase. Currently, he is in the studio finishing his first studio release and booking shows with his band, The Big Dukes.
Eric Seader is a paralegal by day, singer-songwriter and a progressive socio-political advocate by night, living in Astoria, NY. A songwriter for over 18 years, he strives to touch as many genres with his music as possible and has recently returned to his roots, writing songs with a message, as he did when he first began. Eric writes songs about love - lost and found, peace, rebirth, and renewal. His recent project, The Burnt Roses, is a collaborative effort with Long Island sensation Rorie Kelly to write songs for hope, healing, and humanity.
Mike is a singer/songwriter from Astoria and makes up 1/2 (and sometimes 1/3 or even 1/5) of the band Fairway. Fairway began playing in 2010 but only recently became a full-time project for Mike and percussionist T.J. Rowe (the other 1/2, 1/3, or even 1/5). The band is working on songs for an EP and hopes to begin recording in the coming months. Find their music at www.facebook.com/fairwayband or other places where music can be found.
“The Wave Organ Song” is Garrin Benfield’s fifth full length CD of original songs. He gained notice in 2000 with his stark tribute to Matthew Shepard, “What You’re Hiding”, which was used in a production of the Laramie Project. In 2002, after recording his second CD, “Nowhere is Brighter” with Bonnie Raitt’s rhythm section and guest Boz Scaggs, Benfield took up a relentless touring schedule, both as a solo artist and with his band. Some of these increasingly improvisation-heavy sets were documented on the 2003 release “August Live”. 2004 saw the release of “Where Joy Kills Sorrow”, and Benfield’s first foray into live improvisational looping, which enabled him to tour solo but with added layers of beats, bass lines and the searing lead guitar Benfield’s hardcore fans have come to expect. Playing eclectic sets at hundreds of shows every year, Benfield has become an underground favorite at festivals, rock clubs, coffeehouses and house concerts.
Janna Pelle will show you that you don't need to feel trapped inside your own body. She is the lovechild of Sean Lennon and Fiona Apple with the alter-ego of Lady Gaga. Originally from Miami, Florida, Janna began piano lessons at the age of 6, and in college studied creative advertising at the University of Florida. Her classical piano training and experience in modern branding techniques make her debut alternative-pop album, "Shameless Self-Promotion" an easy sell. If you love pop music, you'll love Janna Pelle - if you hate pop music, you'll hate that you love Janna Pelle.
Son of an opera singer and a poet, you might say Jeff Jacobs was bred for songwriting. His poignantly thoughtful guitar, piano and voice can swoon any audience into a state of delight, while his lyrics tell a story of hope and love seen through the eyes of an old soul. He currently resides in the East Village and is studying to be a music therapist. Jeff has a diverse set of influences, some of whom include Ray Lamontagne, Nick Drake, Queen and Beck.
John Paul Palace of New York, NY is a singer and songwriter with a primal talent for musical performance that defies genre descriptions. The lethal combination of his beguiling vocal abilities, truly magnetic personality, and introspective lyrical content culminate in his uncannily charismatic act. Audiences of any demographic will enjoy the unyielding sincerity found in the rare talents of John Paul Palace.
Joshua Batista is a Queens native with music coursing through his veins and a personality to match. 21 years old with the gleeful presence of a child and the work ethic of a man twice his age... As long as he could remember, the stage had been calling his name. With supportive family and friends, Joshua has continued to write and turn anything into a stage to keep a smile on the crowd's face.
Katherine Winston is a 17 year old singer/songwriter from Lenox, Massachusetts. After 10th grade she decided to be homeschooled to pursue her career in music, and ever since she has been performing at all types of venues all over New England, and many other places. She has been performing and playing from a young age, and her hopes are to be able to live her life doing what she loves everyday.
Michael Pennacchio is a Singer/Songwriter and multi-instrumentalist based out of Brooklyn, NY. His songs feature strong, poignant lyrics enforced by ear-catching melodies that will leave audiences humming the choruses well after they leave. He is very excited to be touring in 2014 with his new release "Better In The Morning."
Pablo started his first project “BluesBoy Trio” by mid 2010 (They release their first EP called "The Blues Won't Leave Me" in 2011).
After some time living in London and Colombia (Medellin, Bogota) he tours all around Colombia, gaining some national recognition and constant gigs.
In 2013 he releases a 5 song DVD "Pablo Bluesboy Live Session @ El Alto Studio" a new project as a soloist!!
With a new EP coming out in early 2014 and stablished in NYC things are looking great ahead!
Rafe is a homegrown southern boy born in the hills of upstate South Carolina. Raised by musicians, he has an innate passion for music and moved to New York in August 2013 to pursue this passion. He spends his spare time recording, playing open mics, and teaching music to young children. Rafe is currently working on a 10-track EP of original folk tunes which he hopes to debut in 2014. More original music can be found at www.rafeholt.bandcamp.com.
Roxanne Rae grew up in the wilds of West Virginia and started writing songs on her swing set. Her many influences include: Carol King, Billy Joel, Elvis, Ben Folds, Judy Garland, Hall and Oats, and of course, Tupac. After college, she moved to New York and hit the ground running (in high heels, naturally.) With witty lyrics and catchy melodies inspired by her city adventures, Roxanne plans release her first EP this year.
Sara Carbone is a Westchester County, NY based singer/songwriter. She has performed her soul flavored pop at clubs like the Bitter End, CBGB and 12 Grapes.
Sara Nelms was born and raised in Florida and studied voice at the Florida State University. After graduating, Sara moved to Nashville where she started her songwriting career and began experimenting in bands and recording. After a few years in Nashville, she moved back to Florida, temporarily, where she recorded her debut album, Lover, No Longer at the Spirt Ranch Studio. Sara is now based in Brooklyn, NY and is busy writing new material, performing locally and touring. She would like to thank Waltz-Astoria for their support of songwriters, as well as her family and Justin for their continued encouragement.
Scott Krokoff (pronounced Crow-Cough) is a practicing lawyer who never gave up his lifelong dream to be a singer-songwriter, and in so doing hopes to serve as an inspiration to others who have not yet fulfilled their dreams. Scott is an acoustic-based songwriter whose Americana-flavored songs are driven by their melodies, primarily influenced by his love of music from the 60s and 70s. Vocally, he sounds like a combination of Jackson Browne and Glen Phillips. His playing style fuses the fingerpicking styles of James Taylor, Paul Simon and Lindsay Buckingham, and incorporates the country-rock of Neil Young, The Eagles and Tom Petty.
Stephanie Lexis is a singer-songwriter from New Jersey. A classically trained soprano and actress, Stephanie Lexis' music is both dynamic and bold. Her most-recognized tune "Diego" placed in the semi-finals of two different song contests (i.e. "Song of the Year" Contest and Millikin UCB's Songwriting Contest). In addition to writing material for herself, she enjoys writing hooks for local hip hop artists.
Tatyana Kalko is a singer, songwriter and actress in NY. She was born in Belarus right before the Soviet Union collapsed and moved to the states with her art loving family at the age of 5. After singing in choir, playing saxophone in jazz band and performing throughout Philadelphia in her youth, Tatyana decided to study acting at NYU. She recently found her true passion sharing her voice and unique perspective through her heartfelt songs. This is truly an incredible opportunity!
Vincent is a Singer / Songwriter born and raised in NYC, His music, carefully crafted and yet full of spontaneity and "in your face" emotion exhibits the free-spirited and "reach for the stars" attitude that true New Yorkers have. Vincent strives to create honest music of quality that people can really FEEL. That is his single greatest aspiration.
Qualifying Round 3
FINALISTS: ADAM BOHANAN, CHRISTINA ALESSI, PAUL SAYLOR
WILD CARD: HENRY COLLE (Qualifying Round 1)
OPNE TO PUBLIC: $8 Cover, 1 Drink Min.
6pm: Number Drawing
6:30pm-11pm: 20 Contestants will perform 2 original songs for a panel of 3 judges.
11:30pm: Top 3 Scorer will advance to the FINALS!
Adam Bohanan is a Brooklyn based artist.
As one of the lead singers of the soul/funk/blues band "On The Sun", and a singer/songwriter in his own right; he has made a name for himself in the indie music community in the past few years.
This will be his third year competing, he is hoping to finally take home the title, and use his winnings to both finish his CD and go on tour.
Singer / Songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, Annika (age 16) has written over 60 songs and performed extensively throughout the greater New York area. Annika's songs are catchy and melodic, with lyrics and musicianship that belie her youth. From early 2009 to the summer of 2013, she fronted and wrote for all-girl indie-rock band Still Saffire. This year, Annika was accepted into a group called Real Women Real Songs, in which she'll be writing a new song every week for the entirety of 2014.
Ameara Wahhab (21) has been acting, singing and writing songs since she was three years old. Growing up in Wisconsin, Ameara performed in plays, musicals and wrote songs on guitar and piano. Ameara moved to New York City last summer and has since been seen in national TV commercials (Weight Watchers, Hersheys, Toyota) and performed in variety shows and workshops around the city (Laurie Beechman Theatre, Upright Citizen's Brigade, ARS Nova), as well as continuing her studies of acting and music privately. Ameara is always writing new songs and working towards her ultimate dream of only acting & singing for a living.
Benjamin Lawrence Fiege is an emerging artist from upstate New York. Benjamin Lawrence writes songs from within his mangled boisterous heart, sad dreams and expendable appendages brought to you through a somewhat skillful and creative guitar playing and his most passionately strained vocal cords. Listen and we can all relate!
Christina is a singer/ songwriter based in Northern NJ. Her sound is a rich blend of classic rock and old blues and soul. Christina strives to make music that you can feel in your bones and lyrics that haunt you. Prior to going solo, Christina fronted the band Hey Tiger for several years, playing the metro-area's most iconic stages and notably opening for Bon Jovi at Giant's Stadium. Please visit Christina's website her upcoming schedule of performances http://www.christinaalessi.com
With the help of a successful Kickstarter campaign where he raised over $10,000, New York City’s Craig Lawrence has just completed his debut album in September of 2013.
Before the album release, Craig's music caught the attention of Director, Chris Walters (Director of Photography for Sting, Bruce Springsteen, 50 Cent, and, Justin Bieber). Chris directed both of Craig's music videos resulting in his Youtube channel gaining over 125K views, hundreds of positive comments, and thousands of subscribers.
In December 2013, Craig and his band were invited to support Sugar Ray at Irving Plaza in NYC.
Craig continues to perform in venues throughout NYC
Dorit is a rock singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and Middle Eastern dance coach. She has performed internationally and strives to inspire her students to find their own expression through music and dance. She can be found jumping in on cover gigs, or screaming Zeppelin tunes on the Lower East Side. This year 2014, Dorit is one of 22 women involved in “Real Women Real Songs,” which is a song a week challenge for the entire year. Her goal this year is to finally record an original album, become a pro-session singer, and complete building an acoustic guitar she hand built at the Bronx High School of Science.
Mike Glumac is a Brooklyn-based web developer. After a day of coding his brain switches over to the job of constructing perfect pop songs. Mike picked up trick or two in this task from his days working with numerous Grammy winning artists at a major record label. At TUSSC6 he will be joined onstage by his sister Eryn, who lives in France. Together, these Glumacs make - Gloomaxx.
Ken’s musical influence is rooted through the Asbury Park scene during the 1970’s; most notably, Bruce Springsteen. It was within those walls he expanded his style through soul, rock, and folk music. At 26, Ken currently works as an associate producer with Sony but hopes to one day be employed with them as a musician.
Laurie Anne Creus
If Celine Dion, Radiohead, Fiona Apple and the Disney Princesses had a dorky Asian child, that would be the essence of Laurie Anne and her music; Just enough diva, just enough sound scape, and just enough angst all with a smile. :)
I was born and raised in Japan between a Japanese mother and a German father. I've been singing and writing music for as long as I can remember and just recently started sharing my inner world with others. Now I cannot think of pursuing any other career than a singer songwriter! I truly believe that music heals and I am on a mission to positively influence and motivate humanity though my music.
Jana DeBusk is a musician, educator, writer, and world-wanderer. Inspired by travel and romanticism, her songs are a candid expression of one woman's journey. She is currently teaching private voice and is CEO and Co-Founder of Present Productions, a personalized songwriting company for special occasions. Check out the full story at www.janadebuskmusic.com or find her on Facebook!
Jason is a singer-songwriter that was born & raised in New York City. After attending the New York Military Academy he picked up a guitar and started to write his own songs. Today Jason lives in Brooklyn and has been working at a studio as an engineer on his free time and attending open-mic’s all over the city.
Jordan Siwek is a singer-songwriter-pianist who has been playing piano, singing, and acting since the age of 7. He has acted professionally in numerous productions including Les Miserables on Broadway in its 10th Anniversary Year.
Jordan has studied Music, Jazz Piano and Improvisation at SUNY New Paltz (New York) and Kingston University (London). He was the lead singer and songwriter for the band Alpha State, a jazz-rock trio. He is excited to be releasing his debut album in April 2014!
Marissa Dwyer makes music for the right reasons. A natural-born songwriter, she has always had a way of exploring universal themes like love & loss while maintaining a fresh perspective. It’s that balance that gives her music its appeal. Free spirited pop music with sophisticated stories & irresistible hooks.
Paul's musical career began in the pubs and bars of Charleston, South Carolina, where he would sing bawdy drinking songs and folk ballads alongside his old man, an old-time multi-instrumentalist and authentic Southern codger. Today, both in his solo work and as the lead singer/songwriter of folk-rock/hip-hop band Worthy Fools, his music stays true to those roots while embracing the sounds of a new generation. Bringing together the instrumental traditions and spirit of Appalachian folk music, the passion and vocal pyrotechnics of classic rock, and the driving rhythm and lyrical flair of contemporary hip-hop, Paul's music covers a broad emotional spectrum. From driving, high-energy foot-stompers to plaintive ballads to gritty, passionate anthems, each of Paul's songs is delivered with a healthy dose of wild mountain soul, and just a dash of big city swagger.
An actor and multi-instrumentalist, Ryan McCurdy has been seen on Broadway in Gypsy of the Year competitions and at several Off-Broadway and regional venues. As a musician he has performed at The Bitter End, B.B. King Blues Club, and The Cafe at Broadway, both as a solo artist and with multiple bands. Ryan currently provides piano and vocals for the rock trio Bonfire Falls (http://bonfirefalls.com), teaches a private music studio for clients from Broadway and the entertainment world, and holds a faculty appointment at Brooklyn Conservatory of Music.
Singer/Songwriter Stephen Lyons’ voice has drawn comparisons to Jeff Buckley, Freddie Mercury, Morten Harket, Bono, James Taylor and Simon & Garfunkel. Reviewers have described Lyons’ sound as angelic, mesmerizing, ethereal, soulful, and powerful. Originally from West Chester, Pa., Lyons now resides in Brooklyn, where he’s currently working on a new EP with producer Gian Stone of Stone Recording. He was the voice behind a nationally syndicated radio theme song that was heard by an estimated 8 million listeners daily. His version of the famous Simon & Garfunkel song, Bridge Over Troubled Water, was recently a semi-finalist for Best Male Vocal in the Unsigned Only competition and his original song “Fall” was recognized for honorable mention by Tina Shafer’s New York Songwriter’s Circle competition (which is responsible for helping to launch the careers of Norah Jones, Marc Cohn, Lisa Loeb, Gavin DeGraw and many others). Stephen also performs with the band Bonfire Falls. For more info check out: www.StephenLyonsMusic.com
Whitney Wolf is an indie folk singer/songwriter born and raised across the river in New Jersey. She graduated from Berklee College of Music in 2010 and became a New York transplant shortly thereafter. She has been writing music for many eons and performs regularly around the city in her band Raised By Wolves. Beyond songwriting, Whitney dabbles on the piano, plays air drums, and enjoys living vicariously through everyone on Broadway. If you like what you hear, say hello, they say she is pretty darn friendly.
Zoe Chatfield is from Hartford, Connecticut. She studied creative writing at the Greater Hartford Academy of the Arts and is now a freshman at Smith College. She first opened for a band her sophomore year of high school, and since then has been performing original songs at open mics and gigs. This past August, she collaborated with two friends to form the Bandshes, which can be found online at www.bandshes.bandcamp.com.
Meet The Judges & Sponsors
Music Coordinator of CBS Sports
Joseph Miller is a music supervisor, business developer, placement coordinator and broker to artists and placement companies. He has served as a panelist and judge at songwriter and artist pitching events and has collaborated with industry insiders to produce content that educates and inspires those interested in procuring synchs.
He attended SUNY Oneonta where he earned a degree in Music Industry and Audio Production. After graduating, Joseph was immediately employed by Cherry Lane/BMG and served as a Music Specialist at A&E. He recently found his home at CBS Sports as their Music Coordinator.
Currently he resides in Jersey City, but you will often find him at networking events, attending shows or exploring New York City or Brooklyn. He is the first in vitro twin from Long Island.
Joseph is represented by The Max Steiner Agency in Los Angeles.
Sylvana Joyce, a native New Yorker, started writing songs at the age of 4 - her mother still has a portfolio of her early lyrics, written in scribbles on construction paper with crayola markers. Throughout her school years, Sylvana continued to demonstrate a love for music and the dramatic arts, with a short stint in several Broadway productions that forced her to drop out of school. Ultimately, she chose to return to finish her studies and graduated from Boston University, majoring in music education and piano performance at their conservatory. It wasn't, however, until Spring of 2010 that Sylvana decided to share her music compositions, and founded her band, Sylvana Joyce +The Moment, with childhood friend/violinist Sean-David Cunningham. That decision was life-changing, and soon demonstrated she had found her calling; her early demos garnered immediate attention from the music industry including MTV and Ourstage.
Sylvana's songs, a dynamic interplay of Blues Rock and Romanian Folk music, coupled with her on stage presence, make her one of the most exciting new acts to come on the music scene. In 2013, she beat out over 160 contestants in Waltz-Astoria's Ultimate Singer-Songwriter Competition (TUSSC5), which propelled her career almost instantly - since then, Sylvana and her band have been accepted to over 15 festivals including SXSW, CMJ, and Musikfest; her hit single, "The Break," was promptly featured on the NBC TV Show "Jimmy Lloyd Songwriter Showcase" (Jimmy Lloyd, a judge, had discovered her at TUSSC5), and the band has been featured in an impressive assortment of national and international press, including Songwriting Magazine, CBS' Man Cave Daily, Deli Magazine, Huffington Post, Sonicbids, Indie Music Guru, and more. In November 2013, after playing over 100 shows in one year completely self-managed, Sylvana Joyce + The Moment was awarded the 2013 Hoboken Music Award for Outstanding Band. Sylvana continues to be an active part of the music community as the host of theInspired Word performance series, and as co-curator (with songwriter and SJATM guitarist Chris King) of Kings and Queens, an independent artist showcase with seasonal performances in NYC and NJ.
Executive Producer of The Jimmy Lloyd Songwriter Showcase, NBC Network
Jimmy Lloyd is the executive producer and host of The Jimmy Lloyd Songwriter Showcase tv show. This program, similar in nature to "Inside The Actor's Studio" for songwriters, premiered on NBC in NYC in 2009 and ultimately went national. It is currently running on Comcast on Demand and runs in heavy rotation online on websites such as Radaronline.com and Mirror.co.uk where it is seen millions of times per day. Jimmy is also a very accomplished songwriter and this will be his 2nd turn at being a judge for this competition.
Owner and Publicist, Golightly Media
Lily Golightly is the owner of Golightly Media, a full service traditional and digital publicity firm located on Bleecker and Broadway in New York City. In the past year of operation, Golightly has secured major placements in music magazines like Billboard, television, and radio interviews along with placing songs on television promotional spots. A musician herself, she was educated at Berklee College of Music in Boston and was in a touring band for several years before embarking on her communications career. Her firm has worked with Round Hill Music, Side One Dummy, Euclid Records, Villam Management, Universal Canada, Silverback Management, Mr. 305, and more. She is very excited to participate as a judge this year.
CEO, Music Xray
Mike McCready has worked in the music business for over 20 years. He has experienced success as a musician, and separately as an entrepreneur, but has found his true passion by combining music with business. As a signed musician, he achieved two hit singles. As an entrepreneur, his companies have been featured in Success Magazine, The New Yorker, and other media and have been the subject of a couple very popular case studies at top business schools around the worlds including Harvard Business School and IESE. He has been profiled in documentaries (Discovery, NatGeo, BBC & ITV) and his music technologies have even written into the screenplays of a couple network television series.
As CEO of Music Xray, he has led the company through its challenging start-up phase and through it's angel and institutional rounds of investment. Music Xray has become the largest online community of music industry professionals in the world and helps thousands of artists get the music placed and their bands signed.
Producer, Perfect Mixes
Godfrey Diamond is a producer/mixer/composer with 100s of recording credits. Over the years, artists such as Aerosmith, Lou Reed, Frank Sinatra and Billy Squier have put their faith in Godfrey's ability to help their music reach its full potential. Godfrey has contributed his talents to many gold records including the number one single "More, More, More" which he co-wrote and played drums on. His forte continues to be working with singer/songwriters in every capacity from song writing to producing and mixing. In 2008 Godfrey built a state-of-the-art recording studio; Perfect Mixes in Brooklyn. To learn more about the studio and see a full list of his credits, visit http://www.perfectmixes.com. You can reach Godfrey about your project at email@example.com.
Host and Producer, Alive with Clive
Clive Swersky is the Host and Producer of Alive with Clive, the TV Show that gives you the chance to see today's top singer-songwriters online 24/7 -- FREE! He is also the founder of The Alive with Clive Global Community, which gives companies, charities and other organizations the opportunity to collaborate with singer-songwriters synergistically to create an upward spiral of brilliance and joy in the world! For more information about Alive with Clive, go to http://alivewithclive.tv.
This Contest Is Made Possible By the Generous Donation From
Music Singer-a-Long for Kids
Held two days a week, Little Waltzers is a fun and affordable way to get children dancing and parents smiling!! It's a great alternative to ourdoor funs as the weather gets unpredictable, and it costs a fraction of other music programs out there. No commitment required, come as often or as little as you please!
The Furniture Market
Antique and Used Furniture Store
The Furniture Market is one of the largest antique and used furniture dealers in New York City that has been serving the general public, theater companies, film and TV industries for over 20 years. It's conveniently located at 22-08 Astoria Blvd in Astoria, Queens.
22-08 Astoria Boulevard
Spaceworks Long Island City
Spaceworks is celebrating the grand opening of its premiere rehearsal facility located on the ground floor at Skillman Avenue and 34th Street in Long Island City, Queens. Spaceworks LIC is home to 4 large studios for music, dance and theater makers. These workspaces are available for $12-16 per hour.
Spaceworks is a nonprofit real estate organization dedicated to expanding the supply of long-term, affordable rehearsal and studio space for artists in New York City.
Ted Alexandro is a friend of Waltz and a sponsor of TUSSC for the past 3 years.
Ted Alexandro has been a comedian for twenty years. Time Out NY called Ted “One of the funniest comedians working today.”
Ted has performed on David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Kimmel, Craig Ferguson, The View and two half-hour specials on Comedy Central.
Ted opened for Louis C.K. at Carnegie Hall.
Ted has performed internationally in Jordan, Egypt, Kuwait, Hong Kong, South Korea, Singapore, Jakarta, England, Holland, Israel, South Africa and Qatar.
Ted has been very active in the Occupy Wall Street movement and is one of the founders of Occupy Astoria Long Island City.
Ted has appeared on the television shows “Oz”, “Dr. Katz” and “Louie”.
Ted collaborated with Hollis James on such videos as “Kiss Our American Ass” and “Nobody’s Dummy”, which can be found on Ted’sYouTube channel.
Ted and Hollis are currently creating the webseries “Teacher’s Lounge.”
The Sparrow Tavern
Bar & Restaurant
The Sparrow Tavern has been a long time local favorite in Astoria, NY. Serving bunch, lunch, and dinner 7 days a week.
24-01 29th Street Astoria NY 11102
PHONE: (718) 606-2260
Cocktails & Restaurant
Honest Food and A Place to Gather
Silver Age Comics
Comic Book Store
Silve Age Comics is THE place to shop for comic books in Astoria, Queens for over 20 years.