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I Bloom, YouBloom, We All Bloom

LOS ANGELES (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — The 2011 YouBloom Song Contest, now in its second year, has just begun taking song submissions.

The YouBloom Song Contest, the annual internet-based competition, was conceived by YouBloom founder Phil Harrington and musician/songwriter Bob Geldof.  Harrington and Geldof, along with A&R man Nigel Grainge (The Waterboys, Sinead O'Connor, The Boomtown Rats, World Party and Steve Miller Band), songwriter/producer Rupert Hine (Tina Turner, Stevie Nicks), and record producer Damion "Damizza" Young (Snoop Dogg, Ice Cube, Mariah Carey).

Last year's grand prize YouBloom Song Contest winner, pop/folk singer/songwriter Neev Kennedy, and the three Grand Finalists, will be honored at a special YouBloom Live awards event and live performance showcase at the Cobden Club in London on February 10.

Geldof, Harrington, and Grainge will present Kennedy with a Grand Prize trophy plus a cash prize of €10,000, and fans will get an in-concert taste of Kennedy and Grand Finalists soul/R&B artist Renny C, rock/pop singer/songwriter Marina V, and indie rockers Intermission.

Also playing on the night will be Her and The Colours, Quilla Constance, Joseph Dean Osgood and The Guilty Ones.

"Song contests have been done before a million times, but this isn't 'X Factor' or 'American Idol,'" said Geldof according to a press release.

"That's great television and entertainment and can find spectacular voices, but we would like to find the songwriters and let their peers decide their value and thus their audience.  It's not quite the re-invention of the wheel, just a little push of the same wheel for those who should be heard.  Last year, our first year, our model proved itself in a suitably modest way.  The contestants liked it.  Thousands participated.  Maybe millions will vote this year, but even if they don't, some good music and artists have already come out of it, and that's what we set out to do.  Who knows where it will go?"

Nigel Grainge said, "The essential A&R function of record companies is disappearing now that talent spotting logic is being left to the web.  We're allowing the audience to find and sift the talent as was done in the past and decide which artists will develop.  That's the key.  We can offer some guidance, given that we're all ancient, but that's about it.  It'll be interesting at least.  I'm looking forward to seeing what turns up," according to a press release.

— Crystal Lynn Huntoon