The youbloom Music Awards began in 2010 primarily as an online event with fan voting and high profile judges. The competition was driven by the audience with the winner decided by public vote. We thought it worked well for the first year or two but did notice a lot of talent was slipping through our fingers. After all not everyone had an established fan base or the time to corral enough people to vote for them during the heat phase. We needed to find another way of identifying these talented artists.
youbloom subsequently established an A&R team whose primary role was to identify these artists that were missing the final cut. This also coincided with the roll out of our live program led by Micky P in London. Since then, both our A&R team and our live program have increasingly taken on a more significant role in identifying acts for our annual Music Awards. Indeed, approximately one third of songs submitted during our 2012 program came via these routes.
The general feedback from the youbloom community and the wider music industry at large is that our live program and internal A&R team is the preferred route by which artists would like to be selected for our Music Awards in future. While fan feedback will be an integral feature of our approach, the final vote for the 2013 Music Awards program will be cast by a panel of experienced industry personnel.
Our A&R team is headed up by Lindsay Reade, based in Manchester, England. Widely recognized as the music impresario that played an integral part in the early career of British indie rockers The Stone Roses, Lindsay was also a key player for UK record label Factory Records (Joy Division, New Order, Happy Mondays, 52nd Street). We're in good hands.
The Music Awards is evolving and moving in line with the rest of youbloom. While we will maintain an online fan driven element, from 2013 it will take the form of a more traditional awards format. Fans and the youbloom A&R team will nominate the bands that they believe are worthy of consideration. Winners will be decided by our panel of experienced judges. A Music Awards event to showcase the acts we've chosen will take place in the first quarter of 2014.
We’re excited. We hope you will be too.