Congratulations to Wilder Adkins, this year’s grand prize winner of the 15th Annual NewSong Music Showcase and Competition. Adkins took top honors on Saturday night at Lincoln Center’s David Rubenstein Atrium in New York City.
Adkin’s songwriting is steeped in earthy poetry and is imbued with a theosophical spirit. Thematically, his songs frequently touch upon faith, doubt and the natural world. He counts poets Wendell Berry and Mary Oliver among his influences, as well as Neil Young and Van Morrison. His aptly titled latest album, Hope and Sorrow, is a characteristic marrying of poetry and musicality.
“Getting to meet and hang out with the other NewSong Music finalists totally affirmed for me that this is a supportive community of artists serious about their craft. Playing at Lincoln Center in New York at the Holidays was a dream come true. Being named the winner of such a talented pool of songwriters is an incredible honor and one of my proudest moments!” – Wilder Adkins, 2016 NewSong Grand Prize Winner
“The NewSong Music Competition is one of the country’s strongest platforms for discovering and showcasing some of the today’s most talented, emerging and most deserving singer-songwriters. It has a rich legacy of shining a spotlight on true artists who are serious about their craft. While all of this year’s finalists were compelling in their own way, this year’s winner, Wilder Adkins is an extraordinarily gifted lyricist, vocalist and guitarist from Birmingham, Alabama, who mesmerized everyone in the room at Lincoln Center. He’s the real deal and I’m thrilled to play a part in exposing him to a wider audience.” – Erik Philbrook, NewSong Music judge and ASCAP VP and Creative Director
“We had another outstanding group of finalists this year, which made our job as judges all the more challenging. But after the first two rounds, Wilder’s deeply poetic songcraft – paired with a passionate and at times comical performance – led him directly to this year’s top honor. We look forward to working with him over the next year and beyond, and to help him and the rest of his fellow finalists take their music to the broader audience they richly deserve.” – Gar Ragland, NewSong Music Producer and Co-founder