The 2015 S.A.C. Blogging and Songwriting Challenge was the first of its kind. Every week industry professionals issued challenges that allowed our 121 participants a taste of life as a professional songwriter. Those who committed themselves 100% to the task found that songwriting took over their lives, consuming their thoughts and time. For many it was a taste of the life they aspire to live.
We are grateful to each of our professional mentors, Rob Wells, Heather Gardner, Ron Irving, Jordan Howard, Vincent Degiorgio and Cara Heath, who not only issued challenges but also provided personal feedback to a handful of submissions vetted by our songwriting coaches. The response from the industry was so positive we were able to give participants a choice of taking on two challenges in the final week. It is generous of them to have taken the time to nurture the next generation of songwriters.
We are also grateful to our songwriting coaches, Debra Alexander and James Linderman who lived in the trenches with our songwriters. Our coaches shared advice on lyrics, chord structures and collaboration, going far above and beyond what was expected, fuelled by their genuine desire to see our participants succeed. For many of our songwriters, the help these coaches provided defined their experience of this challenge, opening up new tools and techniques to apply to their craft.
We would also like to thank Barb Sedun for arranging a real life pitch to Matt Dusk (to be posted below), along with Matt himself and his management team for their willingness to give our emerging songwriters a chance to present him songs that would expand his sound for his next album. Having a real opportunity like this has been a game-changer, increasing the intensity in a way no other challenge could.
Lastly, we must thank all of our passionate participants. Everyday the Facebook group was full of positive feedback and constructive criticism as many songwriters shared their work in progress, often times in genres far outside their comfort zones. So much zeal. So much love. By the end of the first week, the group began to feel like a summer camp of sorts, with new friendships forming that we hope will continue long after this challenge is history.
So, we end with where we began. It is time to submit your song for Challenge No. 1 issued by Matt Dusk. Please post the following below by Tuesday, March 24 at 11:59pm:
1. Your Name
2. What was the hardest challenge or hardest part of the challenge for you and why?
3. What did you enjoy most about participating in this experience?
4. What is something significant that you learned from taking on this challenge? (It can be about yourself or about the challenge)
5. Would you do this type of challenge again? Why or why not?
6. Your link to your Matt Dusk submission. Please include lyrics on your SoundCloud page. If one of your collaborating partners is submitting the link to your song, you can refer to their posting (ie. See link from ____________).