Unlike “American Idol” and “America’s Got Talent” where the contests feature mixed genres of music and talent, the Texaco Country Showdown is all about country music (Pictured above: 2008 winner Matt Reeves).
Highway Country (KIXW/KIXF) is hosting the local level “America’s Largest Country Music Talent Search” and radio promotion and entries are due by May 29, 2012. The contest draws a big audience and will be held at Don Laughlin’s Riverside Hotel & Casino in Laughlin, Nev., on Thursday, June 28, 2012, at 6 p.m. in The Starview Room.
Talent comes from all over. Last year’s winner was Ashley Runner from Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., and the 2008 winner in Laughlin was 18-year-old Matthew (Matt) Reeves from Arkansas, who went on to represent the West Region as one of five national finalists appearing in the televised National Final show shot at the historic Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tenn.
Local winners advance to more than 40 state contests where the prizes include $1,000 in cash and the opportunity to compete at one of five regional contests in the fall. The final five regional winners receive an all-expense-paid trip to the National Finals in Nashville, Tenn., to compete for $100,000 and the coveted National Title.
“Some very talented artists competed last year in Laughlin. It’s a great opportunity for talent to be discovered,” said Lance Todd, program director for Highway Radio.
The contest is open to vocal and/or instrumental performers and welcomes individual acts or groups with up to seven members to compete. Acts must not have performed on a record charted in the top 100 country format on “Billboard,” “Radio and Records,” or the “Gavin Report” within 18 months preceding the local competition.
A $20 entry fee is required from all acts along with an audition demo. Highway Country will accept tapes, CDs, DVDs and MP3s. Highway Country will be choosing 10 finalists and two alternates to compete at the Riverside Hotel & Casino.
The road to stardom begins each spring with hometown talent contests sponsored by more than 500 radio stations across the country. The unique nature of Highway Country, which has two towers that broadcasts simultaneously across 40,000 square miles of Southern California to an audience of locals and millions of tourists driving to Southern Nevada gaming and resort destinations, allows the station to be able to draw from a very large pool of talent.
Entry forms can be picked up or obtained in the following ways: Highway Country/Barstow Station, Barstow, Calif.; entertainment Box Office at the Riverside Hotel & Casino in Laughlin, Nev.; the Las Vegas Highway Radio sales office; by calling Highway Radio (Highway Country, FM98/99 – The HIGHWAY and The DRIVE) at (702) 737-9899 in Las Vegas to have one mailed; or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org with your address. Demo will need to be provided for the application process. Highway Radio will choose 10 finalists and two alternates to compete live in Laughlin on Thursday, June 28.
The final day for entries at all locations will be May 29, 2012, at 5 p.m. No Exceptions will be made. Interested applicants are advised to call or email for their entry forms today.