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Music News - Smokefreerockquest fires up for 2010

Smokefreerockquest fires up for 2010

08 March 2010 - 0 Comments

In classrooms and garages around the country teen musicians are tuning up for this year's Smokefreerockquest.

New Zealand's only nationwide, youth, original music competition kicks off with regional heats from the beginning of May and the call is out now for the seven hundred bands and singer-songwriters expected to enter.

Founder and Director Glenn Common says getting an entry in is the first step in a process that requires a lot of commitment from entrants.

"When a band enters they have to decide on their line up, choose a name, find a practice venue, organise instruments and amplifiers, decide the kind of music they're going to play and write and rehearse two songs," he says. "Young people learn a lot of communication and negotiation skills as they go through this process."

The motivation is the opportunity to perform before their peers at one of the 24 regional finals. Common says these are set up to give the kids a real life rock star experience.

"We hire what is often the biggest venue in town, the stage is set up professionally with backdrop and lighting effects, there are camera crews and celebrities - everything you'd expect at a big music event."

For the top regional bands that go on to the national final the prizes combine into a big helping hand into the music industry. This includes a NZ On Air new recording and music video grant worth $10,000, musical gear to the value of $10,000 from NZ Rockshops, recording time at York St Studio, radio promotional support for a single, guaranteed airplay on The Edge radio network, video play on youth music channel C4, a place on the NZ On Air Kiwi Hit Disc, a photo shoot sponsored by Schick and a promotional package from Myspace New Zealand. There is also The Mainz Scholarship for outstanding musicianship, The Apra Lyric Award and the Smokefree Women's Musicianship Award.

"If the national winner makes the most of the opportunity there is almost certain success in the Kiwi music industry," Common says. "You just have to look at our track record to see the influence the event has."

Musical successes from Smokefreerockquest over its 22-year history include Midnight Youth, Evermore, Ladyhawke, Opshop, Autozamm, Die!Die!Die!, Pistol Youth, Bang!Bang!Eche!, Cut Off Your Hands, Luke Thompson, Minuit, the Datsuns, Brooke Fraser, Anika Moa, Anna Coddington, The Electric Confectionaires, Steriogram, Aaradhna, Spacifix, Sam Flynn Scott, Ivy Lies, Kingston, The Feelers, The Black Seeds, Nesian Mystik, Bic Runga, The Checks, Fur Patrol, Liam Finn, Pine, King Kapisi, and Elemeno P.

Last year's winner, singer/songwriter Jesse Sheehan from Wellington College has had regular gigs around Wellington, including corporate bookings and charity fundraisers. His has produced his first video, Brothers and has had on-going attention from a record label, management companies and the media. In March he moves to Auckland to further his solo career as well as working with a new band.

To find out more about Smokefreerockquest 2010, including entry forms and dates for regional heats and finals visit the official website http://www.sfrq.co.nz/

Thanks to www.sfrq.co.nz for this story.


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