Make the whole world sing

Welcome to this week’s Reno News & Review.

Woo-hoo! We launched our local songwriters’ competition on July 1. If you’re a local songwriter, know a local songwriter, have heard a local songwriter perform, have a local songwriter in your family: Take heed and spread the word.

The upload site can be found at We still have some details to finalize, but the site will accept uploaded MP3s through the end of August, and public voting will take place during the month of September.

We worked hard to make this contest as professional as possible, but like anything else, the devil’s in the details, and we expect that there will be minor changes as updates and unforeseen circumstances arise. I’m sorry about that—this is a much larger undertaking than I imagined when we first hatched this idea.

I’ve got one little worry. We have this line in the rules: “If it is inappropriate material, as defined by News & Review staffers, we’re not going to post it for the contest.” Anyway, let me clarify: This is not about censoring ideas or language. I basically don’t want readers/voters to have to listen to someone doing their restroom business. I don’t want readers/voters to have to listen to a commercial message for some business. It seems there’s always someone who tries to game the system, and this stipulation is designed to allow us to control that.

So anyway, this contest is open to age 13 and older songwriters who live within 50 miles of the Reno News & Review offices. As I said before, we’re accepting songs of all styles—folk, rap, spoken-word, opera, rock ’n’ roll, country—and they’re going to compete against each other. It may be next year—assuming this year works—we’ll have categories, but for now, it’s a no-holds-barred competition. Have fun with it. As always, if you have questions, drop me a message at the address below.