See these 8 emerging singer-songwriters at the NewSong Music Competition

The finalists in this prestigious songwriting competition represent everywhere from Oakland, CA to Pelham, AL — and two of them are from WNC.

Kristian Phillip Valentino NewSong Music Competition

The Asheville-based Kristian Phillip Valentino incorporates indie folk, singer-songwriter, and Americana into his music.

Photo provided

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Did you know that Asheville is home to one of the top emerging artist showcases in the country?

In 2018, the internationally renowned NewSong Music Performance and Songwriting Competition moved from NYC’s Lincoln Center to the 828 — and every year since then, Ashevillians have had the privilege of seeing this showcase of top talent unfold.

This year’s event marks NewSong’s 21st year and takes place Saturday, Dec. 3 at Citizen Vinyl. The eight contestants represent everywhere from Oakland, CA to Guelph, Ontario, (not to mention, two WNC artists).

They’ll all be competing for a coveted grand prize: a six-song EP, 500 vinyl records pressed at Citizen Vinyl, and featured paid performances at the Sundance Festival and Art Brookfield’s concert series in New York City.

Keep on reading to learn more about each of the eight finalists and how you can snag tickets for the performances.

Crys Matthews NewSong

2017 NewSong winner Crys Matthews went on to win “Song of the Year” at the 2022 International Folk Music Awards.

Photo provided

The lineup:

Kristian Phillip Valentino | Asheville, NC | KPV’s musical palette falls between the lines of indie folk, singer-songwriter, and Americana — you may also recognize him as one of the finalists at the 2022 LEAF Singer-Songwriter Competition.

Lua Flora | Asheville, NC | This beach pop group’s sun-kissed melodies are rooted in the harmonies of Appalachia, rhythms of the West Indies, and lyricism of American folk.

The Singer and the Songwriter | Oakland, CA | This duo has written and performed together since 2006 and offer lyrics with “smart commentary on social attitudes.”

Cozi Anda Flounder | Dallas, TX | This self-described “cosmic country / Americana-ish” is a father-daughter duo.

AC Sapphire | Portland, OR | Cosmic sounds and passionate, dust-blasted tales inspire this ethereal folk rock musician.

Indus Adams | San Antonio, TX | This indie-pop artist is currently at work on his debut album.

Mikalyn | Guelph, Ontario | Her original, piano-driven songs made waves in Brazil when they were transformed into EDM hits.

Justin Cross | Pelham, AL | A singer-songwriter and self-described “noise-maker,” his songs are grounded in American tradition while exuding a global vision.

Ticket information:

General admission tickets are $50 and there’s a VIP Package (which includes a meet and greet with the performers) for $125.

Pro tip: There’s also a limited number of $25 community tickets available for local creatives — use the code COMMUNITY at check out.