Saskatchewan's Next Big Thing 2010

Posted by:  SaskMusic


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Don't miss your LAST CHANCE to submit to Saskatchewan's Next Big Thing. Nine emerging country acts will be selected to perform live in Regina for a chance to launch their careers to the next level. The grand prize package is valued at $20,000 and includes cash, a single release, a trip to the 2010 CCMAs, and more./n/nCalling all emerging Saskatchewan country artists, groups and duos: Regina's True Country Big Dog 92-7 is on the hunt for Saskatchewan's Next Big Thing. Nine emerging country acts will be selected to perform live in Regina from May 16 to June 13, 2010 for a chance to launch their careers to the next level.

Selected artists have a chance to win a custom-tailored prize package valued at $20,000 including $5000 cash and options, a professional single release to national radio, showcasing for music industry professionals, hands-on career guidance, and an all-expenses-paid trip to the 2010 CCMAs in Edmonton.

The Next Big Thing’s goal is to prospect a serious new country artist, and provide them with key career-development resources. They hope to provide a solid introduction to the greater Canadian music industry. Performers may range from a single vocalist/guitarist, to a full band, and should be from the "country" genre (i.e. mainstream, traditional, contemporary) or country-related genres such as bluegrass and roots.

Each artist selected for one of the three semi-final dates will perform their original music for a music industry panel. Then, on June 13, the Finals show will feature the winner from each semi-final week, performing for a panel of Canadian music industry professionals. On this exciting evening, one winner will be chosen to receive the grand prize package.

Terms And Conditions

Selections and Prizing

1. This competition is produced by SaskMusic on behalf of Big Dog 92-7.

2. Submissions will be accepted exclusively through Sonicbids. All submissions must include 2 original songs (see point 3 Rules), biography and, if applicable, performance history and upcoming tour dates.

An impartial industry jury coordinated by SaskMusic, consisting of at least three jurists (i.e. established local country artists, media and/or other music industry professionals), will rate all submissions to select the top nine candidates, using criteria including: suitability of material, vocal quality, songwriting, overall performance quality, originality as an artist, and market potential. Acts selected by the jury will be invited to participate in the semi-finals.

3. Semi-Finals: will consist of live, open-to-the-public events. Three acts will perform at each semi-final. An impartial industry jury of at least three jurists will rank each artist using criteria including: suitability of material, vocal quality, songwriting, overall performance quality, originality as an artist, stage presentation, and market potential. Participants must consent to performances being recorded on video and/or audio.

The winner of each weeks semi-finals will be invited to perform in the Finals. (The winner of the last semi-final event will be announced via Big Dog 92-7 and SaskMusic websites.) In the event that a winning semi-finalist is unavailable or declines to participate in the finals, it shall be the judging panels decision which alternate band from all semi-final weeks will be invited into the finals.

4. Finals: The finals show will feature the winner from each semi-final week, and consist of a judging panel of at least three VIPs of national industry stature. The panel will rank each performance based on criteria similar to the semi-finals, in addition to Audience Response. Participants must consent to performances being recorded on video and/or audio for broadcast.

The winner of the finals will receive a prize package valued at approximately $20,000 including:
- $5000 cash;
- mentorship with SaskMusic professionals to review press materials and career planning;
- a prize package custom-tailored to the winning artist; for example:
o studio time with a proven producer in a great Saskatchewan studio to record a professional single;
o release of single to radio (including a small manufacturing run, distribution via DMDS, tracking and professional photography);
o an all-expenses paid trip for artist and/or two band members to the 2010 CCMAs in Edmonton, where they will be matched with a mentor to guide them through the event and introduce them to key contacts.

Logical career options and timeline will be clearly discussed with the winning act, with decisions made by mutual agreement between SaskMusic and the artist. SaskMusic reserves the right to ensure quality at all stages of prize delivery, such as use of a professional producer for recording sessions, and monitoring of packaging i.e. press kits, photos, and website design. Any recording sessions completed under this project must take place in Saskatchewan.

Big Dog 92-7 may also elect to present the artist in a private showcase event during CCMAs, and/or other performance opportunities at their discretion and upon artists agreement.

5. All decisions of the judges will be final.


1. Open to any emerging country act (single artist, duo, or group) currently residing in Saskatchewan*, and who is over the age of 16 as of June 13, 2010. Proof of residency may be required in the form of a valid Saskatchewan Health card or Saskatchewan drivers license. All members of the act must be Canadian citizens or landed immigrants.

The following exclusions apply:
a. the act (as a unit) may not now be, or ever have been, signed to a major record label or sub-label;
b. the act (as a unit) may not have ever been nominated for any Artist, Group or Rising Star categories of the Canadian Country Music Awards;
c. any members of the act who are under age of majority will require legal consent to participate from their parents or guardians;
d. The grand prize winner of any previous Big Dog 92-7 Next Big Thing competition will be ineligible to participate.
*In the case of a group: At least 50% of its members must be current Saskatchewan residents.

2. Country shall be defined as any form (i.e. mainstream, traditional, contemporary) as well as country-related genres such as bluegrass and roots. The suitability of submissions will be at the discretion of the initial selection jury.

3. Contestants must perform original material, which is defined as: material written by the artist (or someone in the act), OR material which has not ever been commercially released by another artist. The act may perform one previously released ("cover song") in their set. Songwriting quality of the performed material, whether written by the artist or not, will play a significant part in the judges scoring. Acts will be required to submit a set list and lyric sheets prior to their performance.

4. If invited to perform in the semi-finals, acts must be available for set-up and performance on May 16, 23 and/or 30 at The Pump Roadhouse in Regina. Producers will be try to accommodate specific date requests but cannot guarantee which date you would be scheduled on. Acts chosen to compete in the semi-finals must be available for the full day of finals, June 13, 2010.

5. Acts are responsible for providing their own accompaniment for semi-finals and finals, if desired, at their own expense. Artists may also sing to recorded tracks or accompany themselves (solo). Acts are responsible for all costs and fees associated with using their own band, a backing band, or singing to recorded tracks, and are responsible for their own travel and associated fees to participate in this competition. Professional sound, backline and lighting will be provided.

6. Contestants must consent to use of their sound and image in photographs, ads, performance footage and promotional material to be used in relation to promotions in and resulting from this competition.

7. Winner and semi-finalists agree to participate in activities, as requested, and act as ambassadors of The Next Big Thing competition wherever possible for a period of one year following the competition.

8. Staff and board members of Big Dog 92-7 and SaskMusic may not enter this competition as artists themselves or perform as accompanists during semi-finals or finals.

9. Staff of SaskMusic are ineligible to serve as jurists during any phase of this competition.

10. All jurists will be required to sign Conflict of Interest declarations, stating they will conduct their adjudications objectively.

11. Rules and application directions are available at,, and Sonicbids. All applications must be submitted via Sonicbids.