In 2006, I walked in to a bar in Aurora, ON to participate in a singing and songwriting contest. I didn’t really know what I was getting into, but I had entered because I wanted to win the advertised Gibson guitar. (The $1000 cash, studio time, and Magna Hoedown performance slot in front of 5000 people wasn’t bad either). When I found out the judges were the legendary Sylvia Tyson of Ian and Sylvia, Scottish/Canadian Tenor extraordinaire John McDermott, Heather Ostertag (then the head of the Canadian Country Music Awards) and the mayor, I was quaking in my boots. But after three weeks of competition, and after playing seven original songs for the judges and a packed bar, I was awarded the Hoedown Showdown first place and my beloved guitar. I still play that guitar to this day, and the competition helped to bolster my confidence and my career. I am thrilled to say they are reviving the contest, and I get to announce the winner! So fun. Here’s an article in the Auroran, as well as a link to the contest. You have until July 31st to enter – go to it!
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