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Teen Songwriters in NYC Can Enter Contest to Win Recording Session

Teen Songwriters in NYC Can Enter Contest to Win Recording Session

Teenage songwriters in NYC can enter #MyNYCSong to win a one-on-one mentoring session with Ben Lovett of Mumford & Sons.

The Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment and Guitar Mash have partnered to launch the first-ever city sponsored songwriting contest for teens in New York City, according to a press release from the Mayor’s Office. #MyNYCSong gives young New York musicians the opportunity to show their creativity, talent, and love for the Big Apple by submitting an original song, accompanied by a guitar or ukulele, inspired by any aspect of NYC.

“We’re delighted to launch the #MyNYCSong contest today, providing an opportunity for teenage musicians from across our city to share their musical creations with the world,” said Media and Entertainment Commissioner Julie Menin in the press release. “New York City has always been a breeding ground of musical talent, and I have no doubt that we will discover some truly talented future music superstars.” 

Recorded entries must:

  • include a guitar or ukulele accompaniment, and can feature up to two singers (one must be the songwriter)
  • be no longer than 5 minutes in length
  • be submitted as an mp3 file with a PDF of the song lyrics
  • be an original song about or inspired by NYC

Entries will be judged by Menin; Tom Colicchio, chef and Guitar Mash artist co-chair; Valerie June, award-winning recording artist; Mark Stewart, Guitar Mash artistic director. Judges will base their decisions on appeal of the song’s concept and subject matter, overall quality of the song, and the interpretation of the NYC theme.

The grand-prize winner and two finalists will receive a professional recording session and digital recording of their song, two VIP tickets to Guitar Mash at City Winery on Nov. 19, and a one-on-one mentoring session with Ben Lovett, co-founder and member of Mumford & Sons. The grand-prize winner will also receive a performance spot at Guitar Mash at City Winery on Nov. 19, working in collaboration with Stewart.

The contest is open to teen songwriters ages 13-19, from all backgrounds and skill levels, who live within the five boroughs. Entries will be accepted through Oct. 5, and winners will be announced on or near Oct. 23.

For more information, including a submission form, visit


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Katelin Walling


Katelin Walling is the Editorial Director for NYMetroParents. She can often be found reading, knitting, or whipping up a vegan treat—all with a cup of coffee nearby.

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