3,837 entries raised $192k for Noro Music Therapies.
More than half of the Top 40 songs were entered by unpublished songwriters.
Featuring Gang of Youths, DMA'S and The Bamboos' Lance Ferguson & Kylie Auldist, as well as MAY-A and Yirrmal with two songs each, and heaps more.
Stream the Top 40 playlists on Spotify and Apple Music.
Today the 2021 Vanda & Young Global Songwriting Competition Top 40 finalists are announced, showcasing a wide-ranging shortlist of both established talent and rising stars. In the mix alongside Gang of Youths, DMA’S, and Lance Ferguson and Kylie Auldist of The Bamboos are Melbourne up-and-coming indie pop artist MAY-A with two of her own songs as well as a third with Budjerah; gifted North East Arnhem Land singer-songwriter Yirrmal with two entries; 2021’s breakthrough star Genesis Owusu, emerging country artist Chloe Styler; electronic producer Willaris. K; acclaimed Irish songwriter Susan O'Neill, the sublime Liz Stringer and more.
The competition received 3,837 entries from 64 countries, as entrants generously raised $192,000 with 100% of their $50 entry fee going to support the services of Noro Music Therapy.
More than half of the Top 40 songs were entered by unpublished songwriters, with one of those set to take out the $5,000 AMPAL Emerging Songwriter Prize, provided by Australasian Music Publishers Association Limited (AMPAL).
Winners will be announced in March, with the winning songwriter taking home a first-place cash prize of $50,000 courtesy of APRA AMCOS, Alberts and Sony Music Publishing; 2nd place receives $10,000 thanks to legal experts Banki Haddock Fiora, and 3rd place receives $5,000 courtesy of Aon.
For the second year in a row ten of the Top 40 finalists will receive a runner-up prize of $1,000, courtesy of an anonymous donor wishing to help songwriters during the pandemic — just as songwriters have helped out so many in need of music therapy services over the years.
Since the competition began in 2009, entrants have contributed nearly $1.6 million, making an incredible impact on the lives of others with their songs.
Named after the iconic songwriters and founding members of The Easybeats, Harry Vanda and the late George Young, the long-running competition has honoured a range of songwriting talent: Thelma Plum in 2020, Matt Corby and Dann Hume (2019), Amy Shark (2018), Gretta Ray (2016), Husky Gawenda (2014), Isabella Manfredi (2013), Kimbra (2011) and Megan Washington (2009), as well as top finishers including Baker Boy, Ruel, Kaiit, Sarah Aarons, Gotye, Meg Mac, and Gang of Youths frontman David Le’aupepe.
This year’s judging panel included influential artists, producers, media and music industry professionals including KLP, Jenny Morris, Anna Lunoe and reps from Double J, Jaxsta, The Industry Observer, Billboard, Warner Music Australia, Universal Music Australia, EMI Music Australia and more.
New to the list of supporters for 2021 is music credits data platform Jaxsta, who helped promote the competition to its worldwide network of songwriters and music creators.
Without further ado, here is the 2021 Vanda & Young Global Songwriting Competition shortlist in alphabetical order by song title: