The Singer Songwriter Contest

See 2016 Finalists Here.

The Rules

The 69th Annual Original Ozark Folk Festival is accepting submissions for the Singer / Songwriter contest! Please read ALL the rules, regulations and suggestions before making a submission. Incomplete submissions may be disqualified.

The final competition will be held Saturday, October 15th in the Basin Park Band Shell beginning at Noon. Each finalist will have 15 minutes to perform his or her compositions for our judges.

Rules and Regulations:

For consideration, please send a CD with three songs, a short bio of the songwriter(s) and your contact information to:

Attn: Singer / Songwriter
P.O. Box 522
Eureka Springs, AR 72632

  • Deadline for entry- all entries must be postmarked by August 1, 2016 and received by August 15, 2016. The festival, the CAPC and the Special Events Office can not be held responsible for lost or delayed delivery. We encourage you to use Priority Mail to help insure timely delivery.
  • Songs must be wholly original and all co-writers’ names must be provided.
  • A $25.00 entry fee must accompany submission. Make checks or money orders payable to: Eureka Springs CAPC
  • A CD of three songs to be entered into contest, accompanied by lyric sheets for all 3 songs. If you are chosen as a finalist you must perform the songs you entered.
  • Contest is open to amateur and professional songwriters. Employees and commissioners of the Eureka Springs CAPC, their families, subsidiaries or affiliates are not eligible. If you have won in previous years, you are not eligible to enter.
  • Songs will be judged by the Special Events Talent Committee upon submission and the top six songwriters/performers will be scheduled to perform in a finals competition in Basin Spring Park on Saturday morning, October 15th at noon.
  • All finalists will be judged as they play in Basin Spring Park on Saturday October 15th.
  • Each artist must play the three (3) songs originally submitted. Each artist will have a limit of 15 minutes or the end of their selections, whichever comes first. Audience response is not considered in judging.
  • Winners will be chosen by a select panel of judges. The CAPC and festival organizers have no control over judging. The decision of the judges is final.
  • Judges reserve the right to request a playoff in case of a tie. If so, the contestants should be prepared to perform a fourth song.
  • By entering the contest, all musicians agree to release to the Ozarks Folk Festival and the CAPC Special Events Office all rights and privileges to use likenesses (still pictures, videos, audio recordings or any other medium deemed necessary) for the purpose of future event promotion. Contest entry includes the implied consent and release of all entrants’ supporting musicians.
  • The Ozark Folk Festival, the CAPC and the Eureka Springs Special Events Office reserve the right to make changes to operational procedures so as to promote a fair and equitable contest and will not be held responsible for any inconveniences imposed upon contestants or others for doing so.
  • The first place winner will receive 50% of the total submission fees received, an 8-hour recording sessions at Sound Illusions Recording Studio in Berryville, Arkansas and will be offered a performance opportunity at next year’s Ozark Folk Festival.
  • Second place winners will receive 30% of the total submission fees received.
  • Third place winners will receive 20% of the total submission fees received.
  •  In addition to the above prizes, the first, second and third place winners will each receive two tickets for Saturday night’s headliner show in The Auditorium.

FOLK Songwriter Contest Scoring Criteria








Also note: Our three-judge panel will include members with varying opinions of folk music, covering the spectrum whenever possible. Artists should pick material carefully. In the Eureka Springs competition, the judges are professionals and are unlikely to be impressed with song selections that are uninspired. The judges will be paying close attention to the amount of time your group performs. Due to time constraints, we have limited the time allowance to 15 minutes, plus no more than 5 minutes to set up and 5 minutes to tear down ad clear the stage. To go over that time will be detrimental to your scoring. Preferred playing time should be between 10 and 15 minutes. This time may also include introductions of your musicians.

In order to insure a level playing field amongst the finalists, the stage will be equipped with two vocal mics, two instrument mics, two DI boxes (each of which may be used for a single instrument only; no multi-instrument “pre-mixing” allowed), and two monitor mixes. These inputs and monitors may be allocated however the competitor chooses with regards to instrumentation or number of supporting performers.z