The Great American Song Contest

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When Great American Song Contest began in 1998, everyone agreed that SRN should sponsor a song contest to help songwriters find opportunities in the music industry.

As the survey below explains, SRN interviewed over a hundred songwriters and asked for recommendations on how to build a song contest to help them reach their goals.

Using these suggestions, we designed the Great American Song Contest. That's why we say the GASC is a contest created by songwriters for songwriters.

The first Great American Song Contest was launched in 1999 and went on to become one of the world's most respected events for songwriters, lyricists and composers.



We asked songwriters what they'd like to see in a good song contest. And what they didn't like in other contests. Out of 112 songwriters who responded to our survey, approximately 55 percent were male and 45 percent were female; 65 percent were from the U.S., 26 percent were from Canada, and 9 percent were from other countries.

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1.) Many songwriters in the survey said they questioned the value of the large "big-cash prize" song competitions.

"Frankly, I think the big contests are often more interested in making money than helping songwriters," said one songwriter from Texas. "I think some contests just use a lot of hype to get tons of entries. A few people win but everyone else gets zero benefit."

2.) Some songwriters complained about the high fees charged by large "lottery-style" song competitions.

"Some big song contests seem more like song lotteries," commented a songwriter from California. "It seems like writers pay costly entry fees only to end up paying for the big cash prizes for a few lucky winners."

3.) Some participants of other big corporate contests said they questioned whether their songs were thoroughly reviewed.

"I've heard some contests only listen to the first minute or so of the songs," said a Michigan songwriter. "If songs are not even listened to completely, how fair is that?"

4.) Some participants of other songwriting contests complained they received no feedback on their songs.

"It would really be helpful to get critiques from judges," said a song lyricist from Tennessee. "I entered [one contest] and they didn't even confirm my entry. They didn't give me any feedback about my work. All they did was cash my check."


Songwriters in the the survey offered these following recommendations to create a useful and truly rewarding contest:

  • Don't be just another big-cash-prize contest trying to attract thousands of entries
  • Focus on Quality — Not Quantity
  • Reward winners with opportunities to open doors in the music industry
  • Provide evaluations from qualified judges on ALL songs and lyrics
  • Offer a range of categories and multiple awards in each category
  • Offer low entry fees

These recommendations helped form the Great American Song Contest. Everyone who enters the GASC can expect the following:

  • Multiple awards & prizes in all categories, for a total of 45 awards, 5 per category
  • ALL entries receive a respectful and complete review
  • ALL entries receive at least one written evaluation from a contest judge
  • ALL contest participants are notified upon receipt of their entries
  • Easily affordable entry fees

In addition, the Great American Song Contest proudly presents some of the music industry's top judges! (See Judges & Judging section.)

. . .

We Value Your Suggestions

Songwriters Resource Network sponsors the annual Great American Song Contest because we believe it is the most rewarding contest available to undiscovered songwriters. We welcome your suggestions on how can continue to improve and create the best event possible.

We'd love to hear from you. If you have suggestions, please e-mail:

Survey Questions

Where did you first hear about our contest?

What did you like or dislike about the contest?

The philosophy behind the Great American Song Contest is to emphasize networking and educational benefits over big cash prizes. This approach also keeps entry fees low. Do you agree with this philosophy?

Is there anything you'd like to see improved? Are there any contest categories you'd like to see added or changed?

Thank You For Your Suggestions!


How to Enter

3 easy ways to submit your songs & lyrics...

Prizes & Benefits

50 awards in 10 genres, plus $10,000 in cash and prizes...

Song Categories

10 categories: Pop, Rock, Country, Folk, Lyric Writing, Instrumental and more...

Why This Contest Is Best

Win great prizes AND get your songs heard by top music industry professionals ...

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