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5 great reasons to enter your song in Searchlight 2019

Grant Lawrence

Searchlight is back for 2019. It's our annual hunt for Canada's next great undiscovered musical talent, and this year, our prize partners are the Juno Awards and the National Music Centre. The stakes have never been higher.

You have until Tuesday, Jan. 29, at 3 p.m. ET to upload your original song to YouTube and sign up here to be considered. Voting and judging begins on Tuesday, Feb. 5. In case you need any extra incentive, here are five reasons we think you should enter.

1. CBC exposure — lots of it

Every year, from the start of Searchlight to the end, we find dozens upon dozens of artists and bands to showcase across the country on all CBC platforms, be it radio, television or digital. Some get added to rotation or live music events well after their Searchlight run. We discover so many artists through Searchlight that it's definitely worth signing up for the potential airplay.

2. Charting on the CBC Music Top 20

Plenty of musicians who have entered Searchlight have gone on to chart on — or hit No. 1 on — CBC Music's Top 20, which is heard nationally and has great potential career impact. Searchlight alumni to chart have included Dear Rouge, Desiree Dawson, Caveboy, Logan Staats, Ivory Hours and more.

3. The Juno Awards experience

One of the key reasons that we are searching for "Juno-ready" artists this year is because of our partnership with Canada's biggest music awards broadcast. The Junos' amazing prize package this year includes your placement in the prestigious Allan Slaight Juno Master Class in Toronto, which is considered Canada’s premier talent development program. Next, you get to actually go to the 2020 Juno Awards and take in all the festivities, including performing your own set at JunoFest and attending the awards show itself. Several past Searchlight participants have either won or been nominated for Juno Awards, or even performed on the show, including the Jerry Cans, Iskwé, the Dead South and Dear Rouge.

4. Record your new album for free in Calgary

You'll have put all the pieces of your career together during the Allan Slaight Juno Master Class, so now you can lay it all down in a state-of-the-art recording studio at Studio Bell, home of the National Music Centre in Calgary. It's a five-day residency where you'll be given your own studio, engineer and access to hundreds of amazing musical instruments.

5. Perform alongside Canada's best musicians at the CBC Music Festival in Toronto

If you win Searchlight this year, one of the best prize experiences will be your performance in front of thousands of Canadian music fans at the annual CBC Music Festival at Echo Beach in Toronto. See you there in May!


Searchlight 2019: the prizes

Searchlight 2019: key dates

Searchlight 2019: rules and regulations

Searchlight 2019: FAQs

Searchlight 2019 sponsors.