MUSIC NATION TALENT CONTEST OFFICIALLY KICKS OFF AS MUSIC INDUSTRY POWERHOUSES JOIN AS CELEBRITY JUDGES
Nelly, Good Charlotte’s Madden Brothers, and The Game Among Online Music Competition Judges; Clear Channel Radio to Provide Online and On-Air Promotion to Give Contest Unprecedented Reach
NEW YORK, January 29, 2007 – Music Nation, the artist development company, has announced the final line-up of its music industry judges as the first online multi-genre video music competition officially launches. Voting is now formally open and together with the public, these judges will choose finalists for the 15-week competition. Music Nation will award a global recording contract with Epic Records to a winner in each of three genres - rock, pop and urban. Additionally, all three winners will be showcased on an episode of STRIPPED, Clear Channel Radio’s exclusive in-studio performance series, giving unsigned acts the chance of a lifetime.
Bringing together a diverse group of both artists and music executives, Music Nation has lined up a team of industry powerhouses to help determine the competition winners. For the Urban genre, the judges are Nelly, three-time Grammy Award winner and one of the best selling rappers of all time with over 35 million records sold, and multi-platinum rapper and two-time Grammy nominee The Game. Rounding out the Urban judges is Mark Pitts, President of Urban Music at Jive Records, who over his career has managed such acts as Notorious B.I.G. and Nas, and is credited for helping to break such artists as Usher, Ciara, and Chris Brown. Serving as judges for the Rock genre are brothers Joel and Benji Madden from multi-platinum recording artists Good Charlotte and producer Howard Benson, who has worked with acts such as The All-American Rejects, Hoobastank, Papa Roach and My Chemical Romance, and is currently a 2007 Grammy-nominee for Producer Of The Year. In the Pop genre, the judges are Charlie Walk, President of Epic Records, home of platinum-selling acts such as Modest Mouse, Franz Ferdinand, and Incubus, and producer Jonathan “J.R.” Rotem, who has worked with high profile artists such as Britney Spears, Jennifer Lopez, Destiny’s Child, and Rihanna.
“This contest is an incredible idea and I’m thrilled to be a part of it,” said Joel Madden of Good Charlotte. “MySpace and other sites have already given unsigned acts a chance to have their music heard by fans beyond their hometown, but Music Nation is taking it to the next level by actually looking to give these artists a career.”
“There are so many artists out there on the come up, grinding away to get discovered and have their music heard by the masses. Music Nation is the demo tape of today and I’m glad to be a judge in the competition,” said The Game.
Music Nation has been accepting entries from musicians ages 14 and older since mid-November and has already attracted more than 1,000 videos from some of the most talented unsigned acts across the country. With the competition now officially underway, fans are invited to register with the Music Nation site, create a user page, join artist communities, and begin voting for their favorite entries. As voting will reset weekly, entry will remain open to musicians and bands for the initial 12 weeks of competition, available through the Music Nation website or local Clear Channel Radio station websites with a $25 fee. Each week, the judges and the public will choose two winners in each genre, and these winning bands will be moved into the quarterfinals. After the 12 initial weeks, there will be 3 weeks of quarterfinals, semifinals, and finals until one winner from each genre is chosen during the 15th week.
Additionally, Clear Channel Radio will be giving unprecedented exposure to the online contest through both broadcast initiatives and prominent placement on local station websites, rallying both fan and artist involvement. In 25 major markets across the country – including New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Philadelphia and Chicago – the contest will be promoted on-air by local radio personalities. These promotions will drive traffic to the local Clear Channel Radio affiliate websites where bands can enter the competition and listeners can register and vote each week for the Music Nation winners. Additionally, Music Nation’s weekly webisodes, which highlight videos from the online competition, will be also be showcased on the affiliate sites.
“We are focused on delivering an experience to unsigned acts that will help them develop sustainable careers in the music business. Working with artists, producers and executives of our judges’ caliber is wildly exciting for us and hopefully for the independent music community at large,” said Daniel Klaus, Music Nation CEO. “These judges, in combination with our partnerships with Epic Records and Clear Channel Radio, will help us provide the ultimate empowerment experience to our audience.”
About Music Nation
Music Nation is an artist development company launching multi-genre, online video-based music competitions both domestically and abroad, bringing together emerging talent from across multiple genres. In providing an online outlet designed to discover new and established musicians, Music Nation empowers both artists and the online music community by harnessing advanced technologies like IPTV – uniquely positioning the company in today’s digitally driven entertainment climate. Founded in 2006, the company is the brainchild of Daniel Klaus, Lucas Mann, Kevin P. Ryan, and Peter Read; visionary figures whose expertise crosses the Internet media, e-commerce, artist management/development and the recording industry divides.
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