The Welcome to Yorkshire and London North East Railway (LNER) competition to discover a new song to celebrate the county reveals its fab four finalists.
Competition has been tough, with an exceptionally high standard of entries, but the final four have now been revealed and it’s up to the public to decide who will be the lucky winner!
Listen to the finalists, watch their video entries, hear what they have to say … AND vote for your favourite at songforyorkshire.co.uk
Sam Turner – solo
Isolation Club – duo
DMP Young Voices – school
Shared Harmonies CIC – group
Voting opens at 8am on Friday 5th March and closes at midnight on Wednesday 10th March. The winner will be announced on Friday 12th March.
There have been some tricky decisions for the high-profile Welcome to Yorkshire and LNER Song for Yorkshire judges, including lead judge Lizzie Jones MBE and her esteemed panel of Yorkshire talent - Kaiser Chiefs’ Simon Rix, Capital Yorkshire radio presenter JoJo, stage and screen star Natalie Anderson, TV presenter Luxmy Gopal, LNER Commercial Director Suzanne Donnelly and producer/CEO at Sheffield Theatres Dan Bates.
Lead judge and soprano singer, Lizzie Jones MBE said: “I couldn’t have been more thrilled to be asked to judge such a wonderful, exciting and very relevant competition as “Song for Yorkshire”. This year has been extremely testing and it’s fair to say when watching the videos it’s clear to see that singing has lifted everyone and sent those positive endorphins soaring. I was so impressed and touched with the entries and found it extremely challenging choosing my top ten as I loved them all. I’m so excited to share our top four and for the public to choose the winner.”
Simon Rix, Kaiser Chiefs’ bassist said: ”At this time when we are all missing being out and about in wonderful Yorkshire, I thought the introduction of a Song for Yorkshire competition was a great idea to remind us all of why we love our county so much and what we are missing. I was surprised at the range of entries and thought it would be mainly schools and groups of young people, but it was amazing to see all ages getting involved and sharing their personal experiences of Yorkshire. I always enjoy hearing new music and seeing people expressing themselves through it. On the other hand it’s been very difficult though to judge, when they’ve obviously all made such an effort. Everyone who entered did a fantastic job.”
JoJo, Capital Yorkshire radio presenter added: “I was absolutely thrilled to be a judge on the Song for Yorkshire competition. It’s been a difficult year, so it was great to hear such varied and positive compositions from people across the region. A huge congratulations to the finalists and thank you to everyone who took the time and effort to get creative and write some incredibly memorable songs. I have a favourite.... do you?”
LNER Commercial Director Suzanne Donnelly said: “It’s an incredible honour to be part of the Song for Yorkshire judging panel and I’ve been truly blown away by the top talent who have entered. LNER loves bringing people into Yorkshire from far and wide (when Government restrictions allow) and this is a great way to showcase some tracks all about this fantastic county and all it has to offer.”
Due to the coronavirus crisis and various lockdowns, the deadline for Song for Yorkshire entries was moved from 2020 to 14th February 2021. The contest has been aimed at aspiring and inspiring singers and songwriters of all ages who were invited to compose an original song, to shout loud and proud about why Yorkshire is such a great place to live, study, work and of course to visit.
Chief Executive of Welcome to Yorkshire James Mason said: ”We have all been hugely impressed with the Song for Yorkshire entries and urge everyone to vote for their favourite from the final four. Lockdown has certainly unlocked some incredible talent and I really haven’t envied the judges having to choose the finalists. However due to the quality and diversity of the judging panel it does mean that the best songs have made it through to this stage. Yorkshire is a beautiful, diverse county and what better way to show it off, regionally, nationally and internationally than through a Song for Yorkshire.”
The Welcome to Yorkshire and LNER Song for Yorkshire encouraged entries from a wide range of musical performers, including solo and group performances, bands and choirs, plus an array of genres – from rap, hip-hop and soul, to pop, dance and even folk and classical.
The final four showcase sensational songs celebrating Yorkshire, including a solo artist (Sam Turner), a duet (Isolation Club), a school choir (DMP Young Voices) and a group (Shared Harmonies CIC).
Welcome to Yorkshire and LNER want to extend their continued thanks to lead judge Lizzie Jones MBE and her esteemed panel of Yorkshire talent including Kaiser Chiefs’ Simon Rix, Capital Yorkshire presenter JoJo, stage and screen star Natalie Anderson, TV presenter Luxmy Gopal, LNER Commercial Director Suzanne Donnelly and producer/CEO at Sheffield Theatres Dan Bates.
The lucky winner, announced on Friday 12th March, will receive £1,000. cash prize and will perform at a top Yorkshire event TBC once lockdown lifts.
Please vote at songforyorkshire.co.uk and join in the conversation with Welcome to Yorkshire and LNER on social media using the hashtag #SongForYorkshire