Acts stake their claim to The Singer and The Song prize

Once Too Much
Once Too Much
Pupils from Cliffdale Primary Academy

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Entries have been pouring in for The Singer and The Song competition.

The contest sees The News team up with Portsmouth Festivities to offer unsigned bands and solo artists a leg-up in the music industry. The winner will receive a fantastic prize package which includes a day in a recording studio, a photo shoot, a song on the radio and much more.

One act already in the running is Havant band Once Too Much.

Brothers Josh and Luke Eaton formed the indie-rock band on a whim four years ago with bassist Lewis Budgen.

Now, the 17-year-olds are a serious four-piece joined by lead guitarist Brad Kimberley.

Josh likens his band’s sound to the Arctic Monkeys and they have already played several gigs at local venues including The Cellars at Eastney and Edge of The Wedge in Southsea.

But they are keen to do more, especially with the release of their EP – How It Is – and they hope that entering The Singer and The Song will help.

‘If selected, it will be a good way for us to get our music about and build a fanbase,’ said Josh.

Click here for Once Too Much’s entry

Another band hoping to make it through to the next round is Hilsea’s Van Laun.

It was just two weeks ago that brothers Louis and Perry Van Laun, took to the stage for their first live performance with drummer Josh Welch.

‘I was nervous in front of the crowd at the RMA, but our friends and family were there and people seemed to enjoy themselves,’ said singer and rhythm guitarist Louis, 25. We really enjoy writing and playing music. The idea of touring and people singing our songs would be incredible.

‘The competition is a really good idea, as it gives people a chance to get themselves out there,’ he added.

Click here for Van Laun’s entry

Many more bands and artists are still entering the competition.

After the closing date, May 17, we’ll be inviting readers to vote for the top eight, who will go on to appear live before an expert judging panel at the Wedgewood Rooms on June 23.

Look out for details on how to vote and how to get tickets to the final in the coming weeks.

How to enter

You must be aged 17 to 25, unsigned and living in The News circulation area. You must also have at least three tracks of your own material and be avaialble to perform in the live final at the Wedgewood Rooms on June 23. Simply upload a video or sound file of your best song to YouTube and then e-mail the link, along with your name, address, age and a daytime contact number to by midnight on May 17, 2013.