Vote in Searchlight now!
Listen to all of Grant Lawrence's Searchlight Standout Artists so far!
This week, we officially announced the semi-finalists in all 24 regions across Canada for the 2014 edition of Searchlight: the hunt for Canada's best new artist. This voting period will last one week and next Monday we announce the finalists in each region!
During the initial entry phase and early voting of Searchlight, I chose dozens of early standouts, including Crissi Cochrane, the Almighty Rhombus and Dennis Ellsworth, the Magician, the Dead South, Scary Bear Soundtrack, Zerbin, Red Arms, and Northern Haze. I'm happy to see many of those artists in the regional semi-finals.
This week, I've picked standouts from all 24 participating regions in Canada, and there are some great songs and stories within our gallery above.
Almost 4,500 artists from across the country entered an original song in Searchlight 2014 and now we're down to about 500 artists. You can vote for up to 10 artists a day, which we hope will encourage you to discover someone new.
The winning artist will receive $20,000 in new music equipment, a recording session here at CBC, plenty of airplay and a coveted slot at the CBC Music Festival in Vancouver.
And just to prove this isn't a here today/gone tomorrow contest, one year later, our 2013 winner, Sherman Downey and the Ambiguous Case, have just entered their 12th straight week on CBC Radio 2's Top 20.
Click through the gallery above to discover 24 highlight entrants into Searchlight 2014, with an exciting and talented range of artists from across the country!
Briefly, my criteria for my choices include:
• Great songs, first and foremost
• A good story
• A clear, crisp artist photo is a big bonus
• A concise bio is also a big bonus
I tend to avoid any songs that say "rough demo" or "not for airplay." Put your best song forward and make sure it's ready to go!
Listen to hosts Grant Lawrence, Talia Schlanger and Lana Gay discuss the Searchlight standouts today on CBC Radio 3!
Who are your early faves? Whom do you like? Let me know in the comments section below or tweet @cbcradio3 with #Searchlight.
Vote for your favourite artist today! VOTING IN THIS ROUND ENDS SUNDAY!