NASHVILLE, Tenn., Sept. 9, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- The Unsigned Only Music Competition is pleased to announce its 2021 winners. Its highest honor, the overall Grand Prize, is awarded to the gifted 17 year-old singer/songwriter, rap/poet Sophie Pecora for the song "Anxiety." The Grand Prize winner is awarded a prize package totaling $50,000, including $20,000 in cash (US) and more in merchandise and services.
Established in 2012, Unsigned Only has become known as the leading music competition honoring international artists who are not signed to a major record label. It has become an important source for discovering new talent and acts as a benchmark for excellence in the arena of contemporary music. Selected from almost 10,000 entries from 120 countries, the winners share in over $150,000 in cash and prizes split among 38 winners.
Winners were selected by a judging panel comprised of high-profile industry experts and renowned recording artists, including: Chris Daughtry (Daughtry); Aimee Mann; Sanctus Real; Chris Culos (O.A.R.); Ruthie Foster; Robert Smith (The Cure); David Benoit; Linda Perry; NLE Choppa; Bibi Marin (Reik); The Devil Makes Three; Showtek; LoCash; Darryl McDaniels (Run DMC); Janiva Magness; Derek Brown (The Flaming Lips); Josh Baldwin; I Am They; Vertical Worship; Victor Wainwright; Craig Campbell; and many more. Also on the judging panel were industry executives as well as music journalists from Rolling Stone, Guitar Player, JazzTimes, Yahoo Music, No Depression; Pandora; Blues Music Magazine; Austin Chronicle; and many more. For a complete list of judges, go to: https://www.unsignedonly.com/judges.
"The word 'authentic' is too often thrown around, but in the case of the this year's Grand Prize winner, Sophie Pecora, there is no denying that she is truly an authentic artist," say Candace Avery and Jim Morgan, the founders of Unsigned Only. "She isn't afraid to be vulnerable, express her emotions, and dig deep - and she is only 17 years old. She has such a bright future ahead of her."
Hailing from California, Pecora is a compelling singer/songwriter with a unique poetry-rap style of pop music. Her debut EP Raise the Bar was released at the end of 2020, and her recent EP Wildflower was released in August 2021. Sophie was a performer on Season 14 of America's Got Talent, winning the Golden Buzzer and receiving standing ovations for each song she performed. She is currently working on new material in the studio with the acclaimed will.i.am who discovered her on TikTok. When asked what her music is about, she says, "I turn feelings into art."
Winning Unsigned Only is an honor that has seen many winners go on to achieve greater success. Since Unsigned Only's inception in 2012, five Grand Prize winners have been signed to record labels, including Country artist Ingrid Andress (Warner Nashville, nominated for three Grammys this year), emerging pop artist Faouzia (Atlantic Records, she released "Minefields," a duet with John Legend at the end of last year), and more.
Unsigned Only is sponsored by A&F Drum Company, Celebrity Access, Disc Makers, Ernie Ball, Eventric, IK Multimedia, Lurssen Mastering, Merch Cat, Mojave Microphones, Orange Amps, The Music Business Registry, TuneCore, and Zildjian.
SOURCE Unsigned Only Music Competition