Georgie Ross-Clyne is 17 years old from Southampton and her song ‘Energy’ was selected as a top 60 song in The Song Academy Young Songwriter 2020 competition 13-18 year UK/Ireland category.  We caught up with Georgie recently to talk about all things songwriting!

What inspired you to write your song?  I was inspired to write my song because I was getting bullied at school at the time and song writing was one way of expressing how I was feeling.

What got you into writing songs?  I first got into writing songs when I had a project at school to write a song.  I enjoyed the experience and wanted to write more and start becoming like my inspirations.

What is your favourite part of the songwriting process?  My favourite part of the songwriting process is writing the chorus and having fun with singing the chorus once I’ve got it; as the song can go wherever I decide from there.

Describe your setup that you used to write your #SAYS20 entry, was it just a pen and paper or a fully kitted out studio?  My #SAYS20 setup was at the college studio with guitar microphones and a normal voice mic too.

How do you usually start a song? How do you find that spark? Normally when I write songs, they’re all about something personal to me, as I find it easier to express my emotions when something has actually happened.

Who would be your dream artist/writer/band to collaborate with?My dream artist to collaborate with would be either Beyoncé or Selena Gomez as they have been my idols since I was young.

What made you enter #SAYS20? How did you hear about it?  My college had been creating a college album which my song was on, they really liked my song and suggested I enter the competition which I then agreed to as thought it was a great idea.

What would you say to someone aged 8-18 who is thinking about entering the Song Academy Young Songwriter competition next year?  My tip for anyone entering the competition would just be to go for it, as you never know the outcome. If you only enter and nothing comes from it, at least you have the experience and a song which means something to you. and if you get as far as potentially winning, your song could be big and you have an amazing opportunity by the end of it.

What are your favourite other entries from this year’s competition? Who out of the other entrants (it doesn’t have to be a finalist!) would you like to collaborate with?  I like the song “As long as you’re mine” by Hetta Falzon as her voice is so angelic and her lyrics fit her song so well. Also the piano is played so well. If I had an opportunity to collaborate with her I would 100% go for it.

What do you like about the Song Academy Young Songwriter competition?  I like the fact that no matter what your song is about you can enter and there’s an amazing experience with just signing up.

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Mia Bran is 14 years old from Edgware, London and her song ‘Little Alchemy’ was selected as a top 60 song in The Song Academy Young Songwriter 2020 competition 13-18 year UK/Ireland category.  We caught up with Mia recently to talk about all things songwriting!

What inspired you to write your song?  My song inspired by the feeling of being used by someone. It expresses my anger through the lyrics and the term ‘Little Alchemy’ is referring to as if I was an experiment to someone.

What got you into writing songs?  I’ve been writing songs all my life. Since I could speak I was always at a keyboard in my house writing lyrics, even if they didn’t make sense. It came natural to me when I was young and I enjoy it more than anything. I’m very grateful!

What is your favourite part of the songwriting process?  It depends! For example, if I get an idea for a song (whether it’s a melody, a lyric or a theme) I just start with that and the whole song forms. So it’s always the first ideas that I enjoy the most, because I find it so exciting.

Describe your setup that you used to write your #SAYS20 entry, was it just a pen and paper or a fully kitted out studio?  I wrote the song at my keyboard in my room with a pen and paper. It took me about two days, and when it was finished, I asked my dad if I could record it at his studio since everything is better quality.

How do you usually start a song? How do you find that spark?  It varies all the time. Sometimes I’m in the most random situation and I think of a lyric or an idea, it mostly happens in the middle of a conversation with someone! I can never force lyrics. I only write when I feel like I need to.

Who would be your dream artist/writer/band to collaborate with?There are so many! I would absolutely love to write with Billie Eilish. I’ve been a fan of her for years and her lyrics are so meaningful. I would also like to do a duet with Audrey Mika. I feel like our voices would go well together and I love her music!

What made you enter #SAYS20? How did you hear about it?  I’ve entered the competition a few years in a row now, and I think it’s so fun. It always makes my year! It has made me meet some amazing people who I’m still in touch with now. I heard about it on a leaflet in 2018 at The Rhythm Studio.

What would you say to someone aged 8-18 who is thinking about entering the Song Academy Young Songwriter competition next year?  Go for it! It’s such an amazing opportunity, it allows your music to be heard and all the people who are involved are so kind. Song Academy is an amazing platform for young songwriters and definitely one of the best. I highly recommend it.

Do you have any tips for them?  Just be authentic! Don’t try and change your writing or your music because you think other people will like it more. People want to hear your real abilities and especially how unique you are.

What are your favourite other entries from this year’s competition? Who out of the other entrants (it doesn’t have to be a finalist!) would you like to collaborate with?  I love Alex Carroll’s song “Paint Me in Colours”. Her voice is so beautiful and I’d love to collaborate with her. She’s also really sweet!

What do you like about the Song Academy Young Songwriter competition?  I like that it enables young people like me to have incredible opportunities and get our music heard. It allows people to create new friends and it’s overall such a fun experience!

 

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Kitty Dodd-Noble is 17 years old from Dorking, Surrey and her song ‘Black Heart’ was selected as a top 10 song in The Song Academy Young Songwriter 2020 competition 13-18 year UK/Ireland category.  We caught up with Kitty recently to talk about all things songwriting!

What got you into writing songs?  I got into writing when I was about 9, I use it as a therapy more than anything else really. It is a really weird feeling comparing how I physically feel after writing a song and prior. It’s like an actual physical weight has been taken out of me and I feel better.

What is your favourite part of the songwriting process?  My favourite part would definitely be writing the lyrics. I really love poetry. I also think that when I have something in my head that I need to get out, by looking at different angles of what’s going on (which I do when writing lyrics).

Describe your setup that you used to write your #SAYS20 entry, was it just a pen and paper or a fully kitted out studio?  I have a small setup in my room with a couple ROKIT 6s, an AKG 414, a komplete control midi controller and a focusrite box. So all fairly simple but does the job. I’m doing music tech A level, so each time I do something I learn more. Always learning more!

How do you usually start a song? How do you find that spark?  It’s really hard to describe. It’s a sort of body sensation. I get a lot of adrenaline and get very excited. Without this feeling I do find it hard to write a track because it’s not really real. I don’t know, the songs that I try to write are never as good as the ones I feel.

Who would be your dream artist/writer/band to collaborate with?I really love Amy Winehouse. I think her lyrics are so beautiful. She wrote with such art and such truth. I think even if you have never felt what she talks about in her songs, you still feel it with her. This is what I want to evoke in my songs too.

What made you enter #SAYS20? How did you hear about it?  I’m at Hurtwood House and my teacher sent an email round. But also… I went to Sauveterre with Rowena’s daughter so that’s where I heard about it originally.

What would you say to someone aged 8-18 who is thinking about entering the Song Academy Young Songwriter competition next year? Do you have any tips for them?  I mean, why not? Got nothing to lose, you can only gain something. I think everything you do in music (and in life I guess) is a learning curve. There’s always more to learn. So if you get the opportunity then why not?

What are your favourite other entries from this year’s competition? Who out of the other entrants (it doesn’t have to be a finalist!) would you like to collaborate with?  I haven’t really managed to get round to listening to many but there was one by a girl called Mia. I liked her lyrics and general sound-craft. Thought the mix was nice too, but I’d like to listen to more.

What do you like about the Song Academy Young Songwriter competition?  I think it’s great. It gives young people a place to put their music up and get some professional feedback.

Make sure you hear the latest Young Songwriter 2020 news first by following our social media channels – Instagram, Facebook  and Twitter.

 

Riley Stevenson is 11 years old from Fulham, London and his song ‘Thriple Threat’ was selected as a top 10 song in The Song Academy Young Songwriter 2020 competition 8-12 year UK/Ireland category.  We caught up with Riley recently to talk about all things songwriting!

What inspired you to write your song?  ( Triple Threat ) I’ve always wanted to be a triple threat. ( The Man ) I like to think the man is a different side of me the more confident side

What got you into writing songs?  I loved singing so I wanted to try writing my emotions on paper

What is your favourite part of the songwriting process?  My favourite part of the songwriting progress is writing the chorus because it’s    normally catchy and more fun to write because it’s the main message.

Describe your setup that you used to write your #SAYS20 entry, was it just a pen and paper or a fully kitted out studio?  My Setup was just a pen and paper and a guitar.

How do you usually start a song? How do you find that spark?  I normally get started by thinking of the topic and then normally I have loads of ideas in my head about the melody and lyrics

Who would be your dream artist/writer/band to collaborate with?My dream artist to collaborate with would be Grace Vanderwaal I love the music she creates with her ukulele.

What made you enter #SAYS20? How did you hear about it?I wanted to hear what chance my songs had in a competition.

What would you say to someone aged 8-18 who is thinking about entering the Song Academy Young Songwriter competition next year? Do you have any tips for them?  Just go for it and give it a shot you never know.  Write on what you have a lot in common with.

What are your favourite other entries from this year’s competition? Who out of the other entrants (it doesn’t have to be a finalist!) would you like to collaborate with?A place to play by Skye bishop and don’t you worry by Lily Criddle

What do you like about the Song Academy Young Songwriter competition?  I like that you can express yourself and it’s for all ages.

 

Make sure you hear the latest Young Songwriter 2020 news first by following our social media channels – Instagram, Facebook  and Twitter.

Nikolas Roche is 10 years old from Chelsea, London and his song ‘Things Don’t Always Go Your Way’ was selected as a top 40 song in The Song Academy Young Songwriter 2020 competition 8-12 year UK/Ireland category.  We caught up with Nikolas recently to talk about all things songwriting!

What inspired you to write your song?  One day just before Song Academy, I met my friend and we went to play in our school playground but it was raining. That made me think later that ’Things don’t always go your way’ which became the title of my song

What got you into writing songs?  I was originally inspired by my brother. I also liked singing and improvisation and also I found that writing songs gave me an easy way to express my feelings. When I am writing a song I feel free, and not afraid to give away how I feel. When I finish I like having written my own song.

What is your favourite part of the songwriting process?  I love coming up with the main idea and starting the song, like figuring out the melody and figuring out my first few lyrics. I always feel I have completed something at that point and it makes me want to continue the process.

Describe your setup that you used to write your #SAYS20 entry, was it just a pen and paper or a fully kitted out studio? Pen and paper

How do you usually start a song? How do you find that spark?Usually I think about things that happened that day or recently – a month or a week ago. Or sometimes problems I have or positive things that have happened.

Who would be your dream artist/writer/band to collaborate with?I can name a lot but my favourite artists would be: Imagine Dragons, Da Baby, Travis Scott, The Weeknd

What made you enter #SAYS20? How did you hear about it? I’m participating in Song Academy Chelsea

What would you say to someone aged 8-18 who is thinking about entering the Song Academy Young Songwriter competition next year? Do you have any tips for them? Here are some tips: 1) Don’t be afraid to start the song writing – its great fun! 2) Try Song Academy because no-one judges you there and you are allowed to express yourself. 3) Don’t be afraid to make mistakes, 4) There is nothing wrong about your song: it’s YOUR song!

What are your favourite other entries from this year’s competition? Who out of the other entrants (it doesn’t have to be a finalist!) would you like to collaborate with? My brother Alex Roche

What do you like about the Song Academy Young Songwriter competition?  I like the fact that it gives us a chance to showcase our skills and that we have an audience who will listen to our songs.

 

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Elijah Tolefe is 13 years old from Windsor and his song ‘Weekend’ was selected as a top 60 song in The Song Academy Young Songwriter 2020 competition 13-18 year UK/Ireland category.  We caught up with Elijah recently to talk about all things songwriting!

What inspired you to write your song?  I was inspired to write my song one weekend, while thinking about all the things I would’ve liked to do during the weekend that I wouldn’t have been able to do. I was talking to some of my friends and while they were listing stuff that we should’ve done together, I started writing it down, and came up with the lyrics for the song.

What got you into writing songs?  I’ve always been into music, especially instrumental music as oppose to vocal. Naturally, because I liked music so much, started writing Electronic songs when I was about 9.

What is your favourite part of the songwriting process?  Favourite part of the songwriting process has to be the final mix, when I end up changing half of the instrumental and rewriting most of the song. Although stressful, my songs tend to really come together at this point.

Describe your setup that you used to write your #SAYS20 entry, was it just a pen and paper or a fully kitted out studio?  When creating Weekend, I wrote the first few lines on a laptop, before moving to my mini home studio to write the majority of the song.

How do you usually start a song? How do you find that spark? Although I wrote the lyrics for this song first, I tend to put together the beats first, because I find that so much easier. I also like to improvise on the piano, so I can work out interesting chord progressions.

Who would be your dream artist/writer/band to collaborate with?I would love to collaborate with Chance the rapper, JayZ, Stormzy and Ed Sheeran. I would also like to mix with Timberland and Calvin Harris.

What made you enter #SAYS20? How did you hear about it?  Last year I entered in the 8-12 category, and placed in the top ten. I entered again this year as I enjoyed the process last year and I am happy to have my music listened to. I heard about last year’s competition from my previous school.

What would you say to someone aged 8-18 who is thinking about entering the Song Academy Young Songwriter competition next year? Do you have any tips for them?  I would say, have fun with it, relax, create and don’t get too invested in the result.

What are your favourite other entries from this year’s competition? Who out of the other entrants (it doesn’t have to be a finalist!) would you like to collaborate with? I really liked a lot of the songs I heard, my personal favourites are, “Little Alchemy“ (everything about it was engaging,), and “Other Love”, I especially enjoy the instrumental sounds.

What do you like about the Song Academy Young Songwriter competition?  I like the that the Song Academy brings together songwriters, singers, rappers, and musicians of a certain age in the UK, and Internationally. It’s given me confidence to share my passion for music and also highlights the fact I share this passion with so many other people.

Make sure you hear the latest Young Songwriter 2020 news first by following our social media channels – Instagram, Facebook  and Twitter.

 

Zachary Zbar is 12 years old from Chelsea, London and his song ‘Protection’ was selected as a top 10 song in The Song Academy Young Songwriter 2020 competition 8-12 year UK/Ireland category.  We caught up with Zachary recently to talk about all things songwriting!

What inspired you to write your song?  This piece was actually more of a reflection on many things that I have been thinking about in context of what our world is like, and what I feel like and want to be like in it going forward as an individual. I think many people have been noticing that the world has been spinning a bit too fast, some things and people going a bit mad, registering changes around us, some of which are either out of our control, as well as issues we have been simply turning a blind eye to. I think it’s safe to say that the world is currently undergoing a very big reality check. I wrote the song long before the COVID-19 crises has unraveled, but can’t help to think how much more acutely I feel now  about everything I said in my lyrics, hoping that, once we have overcome these strange, uncertain times, which will change the world and all of us no doubt, “I will build walls – as high as my devoted imagination, full of passion and innovation.” Build. Back. Better.

What got you into writing songs?  When I was about 5 years old I became very fond of Michael Jackson’s work. I knew many of his songs by heart and sang them all the time. His album “Thriller” inspired me to write my first song, “Immortal”, and influenced much of my music journey all together. I even had a few of MJ’s iconic outfit copies, and used them too! I wore a mean black leather jacket when I performed “Immortal” to my friends at my 6th birthday (I had a red Thriller replica one at home too), and danced in the isle wearing a white suit and hat with a sky blue shirt when I went to see “Thriller Live” at the Lyric theatre. Amazingly, the performers noticed me and after the show invited me backstage to meet them and take a photo! I then did another dance gig at my 7th birthday, when an MJ impersonator performed for us (great gift from my dad!) – I got on stage and danced with him – complete with the moonwalk and throwing my hat off the stage and all. Those are very fond memories for me. I have evolved much as a songwriter since then of course, and my songs through the years tend to reflect what I’ve been going through in life, and also what music trends have influenced me at any point in time. And those influences have been changing quite dramatically at times!

What is your favourite part of the songwriting process?  The favourite part is, of course, when the song comes together at the end and is ready to be performed! It’s a very satisfying feeling to merge various bits – emotions, words, and music – into something that helps me express myself as a person and an artist.

Describe your setup that you used to write your #SAYS20 entry, was it just a pen and paper or a fully kitted out studio?  This particular piece has an interesting story indeed. I was waiting for a taxi at the reception of one of the boarding schools outside of London that I’d potentially attend next academic year. I had a brand new little notebook and a pencil with me – and the words just came to me. I wrote the bulk of the poem in about 15 minutes, and when I came home I finished it in another 10 minutes. So I literally wrote it in one go, putting together a spoken word piece in the rhythm that felt right to me, and I haven’t changed anything since. I toyed with a couple of attempts to make it sound more like classic rap, or introduce a tune into it, but that implied changing some of the lyrics, and for now I went back to my original version. I would like at one point though to explore if any of the other “candidates” may work in parallel, as alternative versions/separate covers.

How do you usually start a song? How do you find that spark?  It’s an interesting question. Historically I’d start by thinking of some things that made an impression on me or affected me in some way recently, come up with some lyrics, and then start thinking about the musical part. More recently, however, as I’ve self taught myself to play piano and guitar a bit, I find myself first expressing emotions in a melody, and then the lyrics tend to just come. I’d sit down at a piano, or with a guitar, and let my feelings and fingers do the work.

Who would be your dream artist/writer/band to collaborate with?From the inspirations I’ve had as I’ve gotten older I’d have to say Kanye West. I find his old work, such as, for instance, his “College Dropout” album particularly cool. But his overall journey as an artist has been very inspiring indeed!

What made you enter #SAYS20? How did you hear about it?  I’ve been working with Song Academy ever since I started writing songs when I was little. The work they do to support creative young people in expressing themselves and growing as songwriters and performers is tremendous. There really aren’t many “exits” kids and teenagers have for our creativity and emotions nowadays, spending very long days at school, the rest of the time filled with even more work, making us feel quite “boxed in” a lot of the time. I’ve heard about the competition from Song Academy in 2017 and have been entering ever since to share the creative side of me with the world. My songs and being able to share them is what has indeed been my “exit”.

What would you say to someone aged 8-18 who is thinking about entering the Song Academy Young Songwriter competition next year? Do you have any tips for them?  Be yourself.

What are your favourite other entries from this year’s competition? Who out of the other entrants (it doesn’t have to be a finalist!) would you like to collaborate with?  I quite enjoyed listening to Long As You’re Mine by Hetty Falzon. Many of the entries are pretty great, it would be super to meet as many of the finalists as possible and others too (I’m sure judges had real hard time choosing the finalists) and explore collaboration opportunities.  I’d also like to collaborate with my friend Alex from Song Academy’s elite program.

What do you like about the Song Academy Young Songwriter competition?  This competition allows all the young songwriters out there to express themselves on a much larger scale, step out of their comfort zone and show the world what they’ve got. Importantly, the competition also brings young songwriters together as a wonderfully diverse creative community, giving us a chance to see how others express themselves and what they have to say. I think the way I feel about this competition is particularly pertinent to the current situation with COVID-19, as the entire world and all the people in it are in fact stepping out of their comfort zones, and pulling together as a community much so than in the past, it seems.

Make sure you hear the latest Young Songwriter 2020 news first by following our social media channels – Instagram, Facebook  and Twitter.

Max Elliott is 18 years old from Hampton and his song ‘Waiting For You’ was selected as a top 60 song in The Song Academy Young Songwriter 2020 competition 13-18 year UK/Ireland category.  We caught up with Max recently to talk about all things songwriting!

What inspired you to write your song?  I often have pretty vivid dreams at night and I woke up one morning half-convinced that what I’d dreamt was real… it took me a while to realise that it wasn’t – but that moment of realisation sparked the song as I came to terms with the mundanity of reality again.

What got you into writing songs?  I began writing songs after I started to get bored of playing other people’s. Years ago I had a YouTube channel where I’d cover what was in the charts, but I found it really restricting, and quickly got addicted to the freedom of writing my own music.

What is your favourite part of the songwriting process?  Personally I love writing parts for different instruments. Once I’ve got the basic chords and melody down I find it very satisfying recording lead guitars, piano, bass, keys, really getting creative with harmony and rhythm.

Describe your setup that you used to write your #SAYS20 entry, was it just a pen and paper or a fully kitted out studio?  I wrote the song with just pen and paper (although I usually use notes on my phone). When I recorded it, I had some production help from my friend, Sam Seccombe, who’s got a small studio setup in his bedroom.

How do you usually start a song? How do you find that spark?  For me writing a song is never planned – if I sit down with the intention of writing nothing ever happens!  I find the songwriting process is really spontaneous; the spark will often just emerge from a melody in my head, which I quickly record into my voice memos before I forget it, before turning it into something more substantial.

Who would be your dream artist/writer/band to collaborate with?D’Angelo – his album ‘Voodoo’ is my all-time favourite.

What made you enter #SAYS20? How did you hear about it?  I’ve been entering since I was about 13, when I was looking to get my songs heard and out into the world.

What would you say to someone aged 8-18 who is thinking about entering the Song Academy Young Songwriter competition next year? Do you have any tips for them?  Write loads of songs and then pick the one you’re most happy with! The first song you write is rarely the best. And don’t be disheartened if you don’t make the cut… there’s always next year!

What are your favourite other entries from this year’s competition? Who out of the other entrants (it doesn’t have to be a finalist!) would you like to collaborate with?  Loads of great entries to pick from but Room6’s song is my fav – really cool vibe.

What do you like about the Song Academy Young Songwriter competition?  I love the fact that Song Academy really encourages the art of writing the song itself… in today’s music industry there’s so much emphasis on production, performance, image and so on, and the quality of the music itself is often overlooked, so it’s great to see songwriters taking centre stage.

 

Make sure you hear the latest Young Songwriter 2020 news first by following our social media channels – Instagram, Facebook  and Twitter.

 

Isaac Kennedy is 17 years old from Manchester and his song ‘Hardly Know You’ was selected as a top 60 song in The Song Academy Young Songwriter 2020 competition 13-18 year UK/Ireland category.  We caught up with Isaac recently to talk about all things songwriting!

What inspired you to write your song?  I was fascinated by the idea of meeting someone for the first time and instantly having a connection in a way which feels like you’ve have known them forever. Therefore, I tried to portray this emotion through my song in where I am searching for the answer.

What got you into writing songs?  I started playing guitar and singing from a young and by the age of 10 I was learning cover after cover and busking. After a few years of this I was looking for the next step as a musician and started exploring my own musical ideas. From this I have wrote many songs of many different genres to help me discover how I best see myself as an artist.

What is your favourite part of the songwriting process?  My favourite part of my songwriting process is, in fact, before I even start writing the song. The rush of excitement I get when I find inspiration for a concept or idea for a song is why I love writing so much and I find once this happens, the song will naturally come out.

Describe the setup that was used to write your SAYS20 entry; was it just pen and paper or a full kitted out studio?  My setup for writing my song was my acoustic guitar and my phone for the lyrics. When I came to record the song, I used my laptop with logic pro x and my electric guitar, bass and microphone. All in my bedroom.

How do you usually start a song?  I always begin writing a song with a picture of an end product in my head, this could be a concept for the arrangement, idea for the lyrics etc. However sometimes the song could come out completely different at the end.

Who would be your dream artist/writer/band to collaborate with?My dream artist to collaborate with would have to be the band Easy Life. This is because I love the way they blend jazzy chords and guitar riffs, with rnb style drumbeats and melodies.

What made you enter #SAYS20? How did you hear about it?  I entered SAYS20 because I have put songs in for 3 years now and I think it is a great way to gain feedback from established songwriters in the industry which I can take away to keep improving my own work.

What would you say to someone aged 8-18 who is thinking about entering the Song Academy Young Songwriter competition next year? Do you have any tips for them?  I think entering is a great idea for anybody wanting to get better and more experienced at song writing as you are putting your songs out there for people to listen to, gaining feedback from professionals, and listening to other songwriters music which may inspire some of your own work.

What are your favourite other entries from this year’s competition? Who out of the other entrants (it doesn’t have to be a finalist!) would you like to collaborate with?  My 2 personal favourites from SAYS20 are James Bakian – Can’t think straight, and Leona Mae – Deserve my Love.

What do you like about the Song Academy Young Songwriter competition?  I like that competition gives a chance for younger and less established artists to show their songs to professionals in the industry.

Make sure you hear the latest Young Songwriter 2020 news first by following our social media channels – Instagram, Facebook  and Twitter.

 

Nikaa is 18 years old from London and her song ‘Homegrown’ was selected as a top 60 song in The Song Academy Young Songwriter 2020 competition 13-18 year UK/Ireland category.  We caught up with Nikaa recently to talk about all things songwriting!

What inspired you to write your song?  The inspiration behind ‘Homegrown’ was that I wanted a song that was relatable to a target audience. A song that expressed the way myself and Santana G had grown up in London in different parts of the capital, writing about daily life and our surroundings.

What got you into song writing?  From a young age I have always loved making up my own stories whether that be fictional on non-fiction. I found writing thing down and making up my own storying is what made me get into song writing as it has always been a way to express my feeling and moods.  My goal for every song that I write is to make it relatable to people worldwide as lyrical structure is a big thing in my songs.

What is your favourite part of the song writing process?  For me I enjoy experimenting with different ideas, whether that is a memory, a situation when I was hurt in some way etc. With these ideas I then experiment with different beats and styles and see which concept I am relating more to and go from there. Even though I come across challenges along the way and can be annoying, I feel that if a song was too easy to write it would not grab the audience in the way that was intended all along.

Describe the setup that was used to write your SAYS20 entry; was it just pen and paper or a full kitted out studio?  Both myself and Santana G co-wrote the song together we were in a group session in a recording studio working on a completely different song. We knew that we wanted to work together but we didn’t know what concept the song was going to follow, the beat, how relatable it would be to our target audience etc. We then thought about it for a while, where I initiated the idea of writing a song about London, which expresses how we grew up in different parts. It took us about 6 weeks to finish the song, writing it wherever an idea came to us, whether that is on the train or in our rooms or simply meeting up and going to the studio. We constantly kept an archive of voice notes and send them to each other before recording. When we had all the writing completed we then recorded the finish product in a studio.

How do you usually start a song? How do you find that spark?  For me I normally start a song with how I am feeling that day. If I am feeling particularly happy I would normally make a beat and singer along to that, writing down anything and everything that come into mind. I would then picking out the factors I like the most building up a scenario that I can relate to and that I know I will enjoy writing about.

Who would be your dream artist/writer/ band to collaborate with?In terms of artist and writers, I would love to have the opportunity to work with Jake Gosling as his work is brilliant and especially his input on Ed Sheeran’s + album really made that album memorable as not only did the album produce many hit records but the lyrical aspect and the meanings behind every word was just out of this world

What made you enter SAYS20? How did you hear about it? I wanted a place where I could perform and express my music to a much larger audience and industry people. Also where I could receive good constructive industry criticism that I would take on board and learn from in order to progress as an artist. I heard about the competition via a friend who had previously entered last year.

What would you say to someone age 8-18 who is thinking about entering the Song Academy Young Songwriter competition next year?  My advice to young writers like myself who are thinking of entering next year is to just go for it as opportunities like this only come around once a year and if you wait too long to enter and you’re constantly putting it off you will never reach your end goal. The worst thing that will happen is that you won’t get through to the final, but persistence and concentration and the willingness to pursue even if things don’t go your way is what makes or breaks an artist.

What are your favourite other entries from this year’s competition? Who out of the other entrants (it doesn’t have to be a finalist!) would you like to collaborate with? I really like Max Elliot’s voice and song. His uniqueness and crisp voice is something special and I am looking forward to hearing more from him in the future.

What do you like about the Song Academy Young Songwriter competition?  I like how the competition brings together such inspirational artist worldwide with potential future collaborations. Also the fact that it provides a platform for unsigned artists like me, giving the chance to express music in front of a vast audience and industry professionals.

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