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This year’s Youth Showcase takes place at the downtown Barrie Public Library (60 Worsley St.). Doors open at 7 p.m. and music starts at 7:30 p.m. This year’s showcase features eight very talented young songwriters. They are Eric Leigh, Sebastian McGaughey, Josh Ritchie, Alyssa Tess, Melina Melle, Jonathan Markov, Greg Smith and Madison Galloway.

Eric Leigh is a 19-year-old singer-songwriter from Guelph. He has been writing songs since 4th grade, and last year he released an EP called The Graduation, which is available on iTunes, Spotify, and in CD format. Eric is currently attending the Ontario Institute of Audio Recording in London to pursue his passion for the recording arts.

Sebastian McGaughey is 18 years old and is from Midland. He has been writing songs for a little over a year. He released a single on Valentine’s Day called “All of My Friends” and is currently working on an album.

Josh Ritchie is next-generation Canadian Folk royalty who loves playing ‘real’ football and is a Manchester United supporter. Otherwise, he appears to be keeping his online profile way below the radar.

Alyssa Tess is a 21-year-old singer-songwriter from the Georgian Bay area. Alyssa fell in love with performing and songwriting at the young age of seven. Since then, she has continued to express herself through song. Her music is a collection of personal experiences and stories that focus on a wide range of emotions and musical sound.

Melina Melle is a 19-year old pop singer-songwriter from Barrie. Her music has influences of Ed Sheeran and Selena Gomez and her attitude is reminiscent of Alanis Morissette. Melina Melle works with songwriters and producers in Barrie, Toronto, Nashville and Los Angeles.

Jonathan Markov is a folk/blues/alternative solo artist, often described as a “one-man band”. Often using a loop pedal, he skillfully crafts harmonies, and allows himself to play instrumental and vocal solos, and improvise. At 20, Jonathan prefers to perform with an alcoholic beverage at his side, though he will probably not drink it. He still likes cheese, crackers, making his audience laugh and smile, and celebrating life through the art of his unique style of music.

Greg Smith is a 21-year-old story-based songwriter from Walters Falls. For two years Greg has been performing his work in venues from Budapest to Toronto, during that time he has released a debut EP and two singles, toured in Europe and Canada and was also selected as a 2017 Folk Music Ontario Youth Development Artist. In the Fall of 2018 he will be releasing his follow up EP Michael.

Madison Galloway was born and raised in small town Fergus. 18 years old, she is a driven and dynamic multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter with a unique approach to her blend of folk, rock, and blues. Madison began her musical journey at 6 years old and has been classically trained in piano for the past 11 years. At 15, Madison set out to translate her youth and energy into her debut EP, Who Knows Where, which features original songs that flirt with country while retaining Madison’s signature style and attitude.

David Joyce and Angie Nussey from BADAS/s are facilitating the workshops for the young songwriters this year. They will be facilitating workshops in the Take Note Music House, once again thanks to the generosity of Alyssa Wright.

Interested in performing next year?

Do you like to write and perform original music? Check out our Youth Songwriting Competition. Submissions must be submitted to Jennifer Ives: by April 15, 2019.

Thanks to the songwriters of B.A.D.A.S/s (Barrie and District Association of Singer/Songwriters) for their continued support with mentorship.

Here’s what two of our former youth participants had to say about the showcase:

“Being inspired by peers and mentors at the BarrieFolk Youth Songwriters’ Showcase and mentoring sessions was invigorating, not only that day but also since then. The community we were brought into has sustained their support in both tangibly and in an unspoken way. Open-mindedness and willingness to learn from each other was, and is, very important to me. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to grow together!”

Braden Phelan and Liv Cazzola

Rules and Criteria

  • Must be between 13 and 21 years of age on or before Feb. 14, 2018
  • Must be a Canadian citizen
  • Cannot be a previous first place winner of competition
  • All submitted material must be original and performed by the entrant(s);each entry may consist of more than one person as long as each participant meets the criteria above
  • Cannot be a previously submitted song
  • One song per entry
  • Submissions must be received by April 15, 2018 in MP3 format and include a hard copy of the lyrics, accompanied by an e-mail address; if mailing submission, CDs are allowed
  • Submissions must be submitted to Jennifer Ives: by April 15, 2018.
  • Eight songwriters will be chosen to participate in afternoon mentoring sessions with the experienced songwriters of B.A.D.A.S/s (Barrie and District Association of Singer/Songwriters) and will have the opportunity to perform three to four songs at the evening Showcase Concert (date and location TBD).
  • Each finalist will receive $100