Looking For Indie Female Rockers

Gail Chiasson, North American Editor

PlayNetwork, maurices and Sonicbids have partnered in looking for the next best independent female rockers in a nationwide talent search called ‘Small Town Sound.’

Duluth, Minnesota-based maurices, a leading small town specialty store and fashion authority, announced the launch of its Small Town Sound band search – in partnership with PlayNetwork of Redmond, Washington, and Sonicbids, Boston – as an extension of last year’s “Small Town Charm” campaign, a cross-country photo shoot which garnered immense support from local communities.

“The goal of this program is not only to discover the hottest up-and-coming band in the country, but to continue building strong connections with the maurices communities,” says Lisa Bartlett, assistant vice-president of marketing at maurices. “We pride ourselves on being the best small town specialty retailer so we look for every opportunity to reach these customers and celebrate the unique gifts and talents their towns have to offer.”

Famed girl band, The Bangles, Chrissie Hynde of The Pretenders and JP, Chrissie & The Fairground Boys, and all-female indie rock group, Sick of Sarah, are all supporting the program that’s designed to celebrate and encourage women in music.

The band search which will include a series of music recordings, live performances and video productions featuring the aforementioned bands. Small Town Sound will offer breakthrough opportunities for the winning band in retail display, maurices online network and more.

Calling out to consumers to enter or vote, maurices stores will become immersive Small Town Sound experiences featuring PlayNetwork-produced music. The contest website, produced by Sonicbids, will also provide a number of opportunities to engage with the brand and bands. Sonicbids is the website the helps bands get gigs and promoters book the right bands.

“With the launch of ‘Small Town Sound’ we are working with maurices to create a soundtrack for the brand that reaches customers and powerfully communicates the brand message, even outside the walls of the retail space,” says John Crooke, senior director of creative development at PlayNetwork. PlayNetwork is producing the contest, that focuses on music, searching for women that truly reflect the maurices brand and whose music enhances the overall maurices experience.

Any unsigned female-fronted band is eligible to enter “Small Town Sound” at www.mauricesmusic.sonicbids.com. Submissions are being accepted from now through October 8. Then, between Oct. 11 through Nov. 15, consumers will be invited to vote for their favorite bands, narrowing the field to the top 50 musical ensembles. From these 50 bands, a group of panelists including The Bangles, Chrissie Hynde and Sick of Sarah, will narrow it down to 10 finalists who will then have two weeks to create an original song based on the Small Town Sound theme. On December 1, voting will reopen on the site and consumers will vote a final time on the best original song to determine the grand prize winner and the two runners up.

“With more than 750 stores nationwide, maurices is a great outlet for the promotion of independent music,” says Panos Panay, Sonicbids founder and CEO. “Sonicbids’ mission is to get music in front of consumers through unique distribution channels and this campaign reinforces that.”

The grand prize winner will perform live at their local maurices and receive a trip to Los Angeles to shoot their own music video and record their winning song. They’ll also receive gifts from maurices and Daisy Rock Guitars as well as the opportunity to perform at a major national music festival this spring in a showcase with The Bangles and Sick of Sarah. All fans that vote will receive maurices coupons and will be entered into a drawing for a chance to win a maurices gift card.

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