4 Septiembre, 2018
4 Septiembre, 2018
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Aimee Mann, Frank Foster, O.A.R., Aaron Shust, Grouplove, Jack Ingram, David Crowder,
and Many More Select Winners

For a complete list of winners, click here. Congratulations to all the 2018 winners!

Unsigned Only is now accepting entries for the 2019 competition. Five new categories added for the 2019 competition, see below for a full category listing.

To enter, click here

August 23, 2018 – Unsigned Only Music Competition is pleased to announce the 2018 winners. Unsigned Only is open to all artists who are unsigned to a major record label, and over the years it has become an important source for discovering new talent. Since its inception in 2012, four Grand Prize winners have been signed to major label record deals.

Winners were selected from over 6,000 entries submitted from 95 countries. All entries are narrowed down to a group of finalists that are given to the panel of judges whose task is to select the winners. The panel is comprised of renowned recording artists, managers, and music supervisors, including: Aimee Mann, O.A.R., Frank Foster, David Crowder, Jack Ingram, Grouplove, and many more. Judges also included music journalists from the Chicago Sun-Times, Rolling Stone, Paste Magazine, Yahoo Music, The Boston Herald, NY Post, and many more.

The 2018 Grand Prize is awarded to Canadian country artist Eric Ethridge for the song “Girl On Fire.” In addition to winning $20,000 in cash (US) and $20,000 (US) in prizes, Ethridge also receives one-on-one mentoring from a group of upper-echelon music industry executives including: Dan Chertoff (VP of A&R, RCA Records); Riggs Morales (VP of A&R and Artist Development, Atlantic Records); Nick Haussling (Sr., Director of A&R, Concord Music); Kim Stephens (President, Forward Entertainment); Zoe Young (VP of A&R, Epic Records); Doug Johnson (VP of A&R, Black River Entertainment) and Allison Jones (Sr. VP of A&R, Big Machine Label Group).

“Being named the Grand Prize winner of the 2018 Unsigned Only Music Competition has truly been an incredibly humbling and life changing experience.” said Ethridge. “This opportunity has truly given me the chance to take my career to the next level and live my passion, and for that, I’ll be forever grateful.”


Eric Ethridge – “Girl On Fire”
Sarnia, ON, Canada

The past few years have seen Ethridge’s career gaining momentum; he was mentioned in Rolling Stone, won the CCMA Discovery Program, charted on the Canadian Country charts, and most recently was debuted on SiriusXM’s The Highway. His much-anticipated debut EP was released in July of 2018 and peaked at #1 on the iTunes Country chart and #3 on the all-genres chart. His impressive catalogue of material, including the winning song “Girl On Fire,” proves that he is an artist who consistently stamps his songs with the same melodic and vocal prowess. A doctor-turned-country-artist, Ethridge has a strong connection with his fans and listeners, evidenced by his songs being streamed over three million times in the short time since the EP was released. He was also just named Apple Music’s featured New Artist of the Week.

“Canada has produced many great artists, and this year’s Grand Prize winner, Eric Ethridge, is its newest artist to emerge on the scene,” said UO founders, Candace Avery and Jim Morgan. “The Grand Prize winner needs to be an artist who possesses extraordinary talent and is ready to take the next step in his or her career. We are always on the lookout for that artist who not only creates music that will be in demand but who also makes music that is enduring. Ethridge embodies these traits, and he is one of the most exciting artists Unsigned Only has been privileged to discover.”

Congratulations to Eric on this outstanding achievement!


Aimee Mann; David Crowder; Frank Foster; Jack Ingram; Aaron Shust; Lydia Loveless; O.A.R.; Grouplove; Josh Jackson (Co-Founder and Editor-In-Chief, Paste Magazine); Anthony DeCurtis (Contributing Editor, Rolling Stone); Lyndsey Parker (Managing Editor, Yahoo Music); Jed Gottlieb (Music & Theater Writer, Boston Herald); Kevin McNeese (President, NewReleaseToday); David Sikorski (Sr. Editor, EARMILK Media Inc.); Hardeep Phull (Music Editor, NY Post); Jeff Zuchowski (VP, Artist Marketing / Industry Relations, Pandora); John Dibiase (President, Jesus Freak Hideout); Miriam Di Nunzio (Arts Editor / Entertainment, Chicago Sun-Times ); David Silbaugh (Talent Buyer, Summerfest); Brandon Chitwood (Assistant Director, EDM Joy); Matt Maher (Artist Manager, ROAR Mgmt); Chad Jensen (Artist Manager, Jensen Artist Mgmt); Brinson Strickland (President, Collective Music Nashville); Deborah Klein (JV Partner and Artist Manager, Primary Wave Ent); Chris Sampson (EVP, Programming Superfly Presents); Kristyn Ciani (Talent Buyer, C3 Presents); Alicen Schneider (Sr. VP, Music Creative / NBC Ent); Connie Farr (Music Supervisor / Creative Director, ThinkSync Music); Evan Stein (Owner, Experience Music Group); James Kempner (Owner, JMK Connections); Jennifer Taunton (Music Supervisor, Level Two Music); Jessica Cole (Founder/President, Lyric House); Samantha Carew (Music Creative, Sky TV); and Velma Barkwell (Music Supervisor, East End Music Productions).

Dan Chertoff (VP of A&R, RCA Records); Riggs Morales (VP of A&R and Artist Development, Atlantic Records); Nick Haussling (Sr, Director of A&R, Concord Music); Kim Stephens (President, Forward Entertainment); Zoe Young (VP of A&R, Epic Records); Doug Johnson (VP of A&R, Black River Entertainment); and Allison Jones (Sr. VP of A&R, Big Machine Label Group).

AAA (Adult Album Alternative); AC (Adult Contemporary); Americana; Christian; Country; EDM; Folk/Singer-Songwriter; R&B/Hip-Hop; Rock; Pop/Top 40; Screen Shot; Teen; and Vocal Performance. New categories for the 2019 competition have been added and include: Blues, Instrumental, Jazz, Latin, and World Music.

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The 19th annual AMERICANAFEST® will take place Sept. 11-16, 2018, gathering thousands of artists, fans and industry professionals from all over the world in Nashville, TN. Over six days and nights at a multitude of venues around town you can enjoy the music of the most respected legendary Americana artists and the most exciting rising Americana artists – from all over the world! Confirmed artists for the 2018 festival include John Prine and Friends, Rosanne Cash, I’m With Her, Candi Station, Tyler Childers, John Hiatt, Fantastic Negrito, Ashley Monroe and over 200 more. You are able to see all of these artists and attend over 40 special events with a Festival Wristband for just $75! To purchase yours, click here.
A3C Music Festival & Conference
A3C is hosting the 14th Annual A3C Festival & Conference in Atlanta, GA Oct 3-7 celebrating the 25th anniversary of Enter the Wu-Tang: 36 Chambers! A3C will be hosting a 2-Day Festival headlined by Wu-Tang CLan & Lil Wayne, a 3-Day Conference featuring Steve Stoute, Rza, Eithiopia Habtemariam and many more and 5 days of shows and events. Find out more and purchase tickets here.
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Unsigned Only
3940 Gallatin Pike
Nashville, TN 37216
Phone: 615.251.4441
Fax: 615.251.4442