NewSong Music is proud to announce that the grand prize winner of this year’s competition will perform at the upcoming 2017 Sundance Film Festival, as part of the highly coveted ASCAP Music Café showcase.
Past NewSong winner Joe Shirley of the indie rock band Cardinal Sons calls the prize “amazing” — both in terms of the performance opportunity and simply being able to attend the renowned festival. “We played our set, and realized Pat Sansone and John Stirratt of Wilco and The Autumn Defense (heroes of ours) were standing at the back of the venue and listening to our show,” recalls Shirley. “What a trip!”
“Apart from playing the set to a packed room of festival-goers, just being at Sundance was also a great experience with everything it offers,” says Shirley. “It gave us an opportunity to play in front of a community of people who appreciate good art and are looking to be moved by something.”
Past grand prize winners Rachel Kilgour (2015) and Max Hatt of the jazz-americana duo Max Hatt/Edda Glass (2014) agreed on how attentive and receptive the audience was. “There was such respect for filmmaking as an artform in that setting,” says Kilgour. “It was very encouraging.” Kilgour performed at the Music Café in 2016.
“The ASCAP Music Café puts music at the center of a premier movie festival,” adds Hatt.. “It’s a listening room with a hip audience including major players in both the film and music industry.”
Erik Philbrook, ASCAP Vice President and Creative Director recognizes how important this opportunity can be to a musician — whether they are established touring musicians or just starting out. “As an integral program of the Sundance Film Festival, the Sundance ASCAP Music Café is one of the country’s premier showcases for established and emerging singer-songwriters,” says Philbrook. “It celebrates the marriage of music and film and offers filmmakers an excellent opportunity for music discovery.”
Philbrook goes on to count recent NewSong winners among the Music Cafe’s most memorable performers. “We’re excited to discover the next great artist to perform at the 2017 festival,” he says.