Mission

Annual Song Contest held by the Dallas Songwriters Association to provide a benchmark for popular songwriting competency. Winners in each category, plus grand prize winners.

CATEGORIES AND JUDGES:Finalists in each category will be judged by music industry professionals from record labels and publishing companies; Grand Prize winner will be chosen by A&R and/or industry professionals of Broadjam.com or Sonicbids.com.

DSA is CELEBRATING 29 YEARS IN 2016

MOTIVATING & UPLIFTING SONGWRITERS THROUGH EDUCATION

2007 Song Contest Winners



2007 DSA SONG CONTEST WINNERS ANNOUNCEDat the AWARDS CEREMONY, SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 3rd, 2007


GRAND PRIZE WINNERS 2007
1.
The Morning You Andy Taylor, Marietta, GA
2.
A Town Like This Paul Reaney, Deeside, Connahs Quay, UK
3.
Till the Morning Light R.X. Bertoldi, Everett, WA
See critiques of the top 9 songs by Grand Prize Judge Roy Elkins

The Morning Yoump3   lyrics
This is a heartfelt song with excellent lyrics and lots of truth in it.  The opening verse is disguised a little.  You really don’t know what he is singing until about 35 seconds into the song.  The chorus is the most memorable in this whole competition.  It sucks you in with a “Grand Slam Homerun…” and you can sing the first two or three lines of the chorus by the time the second time through.  By the third verse, you have most of it.  The entire song is a good descriptive lyric that puts a twist on love that I’m not sure has been done in a song before.  The Morning You is a simple hook that was clearly motivated by the writers relationship.  This is a song that will stand the test of time and will never sound old.  This kind of hook concept and hook is not written, it’s inspired and will win a song competition every time. 
My only critique: “Twenty thousand days” and “twenty thousand ways” is in the bridge seems to be a little artificial compared to the rest of the lyric.  However the melody in the bridge is strong, I just think the words could be more up to par with the rest of the lyric.
It’s my pick as the best song in this competition.

A Town Like Thismp3   lyrics
A great opening line that sets up the entire song.  “They shut down the steel mills and tore up the railway tracks.” Probably the best opening line in the competition.  The lyrics are excellent and I gave them a perfect score.  The melody is simple, but easy to sing along with.  A good bridge  as well.  I think the reason this song works so well is that we all know a town, if not many towns like this.   I thought an interesting twist in the song was in the last verse when “Mr. Bates took a dive off the dock.”  It kind of through me for a loop where the focus was now a person and not the town, but the writer didn’t bring it back with in next few lines.  The first time I heard it I didn’t think it would make it to the final.  However, I found myself humming this and singing a town like this quite often throughout this process.  It grew on me as I listened more.  My only criticism , and possibly a compliment, is the melody or the hook may be more suited for a TV show theme song and/or an advertisement.  Maybe more so than a country single.  With that said this song has continually moved up my list from the first time I heard it.  If there was more time, it’s possible it may have moved up to number one.  Great job and great song.

Till The Morning Lightmp3   lyrics
I am in awe of this writers ability to describe in song the pain that addiction brings without directly saying it.  It’s like listening to a melodic version of a great book as the verses are so descriptive.  If you listen with your eyes closed, it is easy to visualize all of the scenes that the lyric is so eloquently delivering.  When the lyric questions the Lord, “Don’t you think you put too much distance between Heaven and Earth”, I believe this could be one of the best lines I have ever heard in a song.  The melody has a perfect marriage with the lyric in the verses, the set-up and the first part of the chorus, especially with the emphasis on “Crazy world”  
I could go on and quote the lines throughout this song, but there is not enough time.  This is a lesson in songwriting as the writer has taken a “truth” in life and turned in into “truth” in song.
I felt that the only slightly weak point in the lyric might be the last line of the chorus.  “I can be alright if I can hold on Till The Morning Light”.  It’s not a bad lyric, it’s just been used a bit doesn’t seem to hold up to the rest of words.  I believe this song could have won the competition with a slightly different twist on the hook.  With that said, the melody does match and it works.  This is an expert songwriter and I would love to hear more of their stuff.

Beautifulmp3   lyrics
After the first listen, this song was not in my cut list.  It has worked it’s way up steadily with each listen.  Everything about the lyric is simple.  Everything about the melody isn’t and they work well together.  When listening to the melody, especially in the chorus, the second “You’re Beautiful” is an unexpected melodic twist.  At that point I thought I was going to hear the predictable, but it wasn’t.  And each time I hear it, it’s still catches my ear.  I have found myself humming the chorus over and over.  This isn’t the first writer to use “You’re Beautiful” in a chorus, but they are the first to do it like this.  The bridge is excellent as well and could be a song in itself.  This melody continues to grow on me.  This is a good song.

You Come To Memp3   lyrics
A great opening line, “You want a vacation, see the travel agent”.  We know where this is heading right out of the gate.  It is a simple concept that is delivered well and makes you smile when you listen to it.  “When you get down to what you need, You Come To Me” is a great line.  The second verse starts with,”Go see your boss, if you want a raise”.  By now you are really interested in what the next line is going to be and where the writer is taking  That’s the continuing hook in this song.  As I was listening I was also writing my own words with other occupations that the writer didn’t cover.  Great work!

The Message On The Wallmp3   lyrics
A great twist on a old theme.  The writer uses graphiti on a wall to make their point.  The lyric is good and the story builds throughout the song.  Although I understand this line, “Someday some may sing, glory to the king”, I wish it was written more uniquely like the visual concept of the song.  To make my point, “Someday some may sing, at the wall of the king” could drive home the image on the wall a little more.  This is a good song and made my immediate cut.  The melody is strong and memorable right away.  I love the visual concept of the wall and believe that the song becomes great with a few tweaks. 

Rather Be Lonelymp3   lyrics
I love this hook, “I’d Rather Be Lonely, then be with you”, and it is one of the best in this competition.  It really caught my attention and it carries the rest of the song.  I think the melody is excellent and would probably be good with any set of lyrics.  I feel the lyric is not quite as good as the hook.  Opening line is good but not great.  Maybe say it up in a different way.  The hook and the melody are the strong points here.  My sense is this writer has been writing melodies for a long time and has really honed their skill.

Gravitymp3   lyrics
I had to listen to this a few times before I started humming this one.  The chorus is an undeniable hook.  The opening line, “You’re not like other men, you’re a perfect ten…”, kind of surpised me.  I was expecting the lyric to go the other way after hearing, “your not like other men”.  The melody is excellent and works well with the lyric, for the most part.   But I believe some of the words could tweaked.  “…..latest styles, you always wear a smile” is an excellent lyric”.  Then the next line is “You light up my world”.  At that point, I think it goes from excellent to good at this point.   This is a good song with a great concept.  I love this writer’s style.

Out Of The Bluemp3   lyrics
This is a song with a couple of hooks, simple words that work well with a melody that is common and unique at the same time.  The song title could, and maybe should, be “Could This Be Love” as it is sung multiple times at the end of a very unique melody in the set-up to the chorus.  The lyric is simple.  As I mentioned, it is delivered uniquely at times.  In the phrases leading up to “Out Of The Blue” it is somewhat familiar and predictable.  I say that as a compliment as it is done well.  Very interesting to listen to over and over again.  I hear different things about this song that I like each time.  I do think the intro could be cut in half, singer doesn’t hit the mic until 26 seconds. I almost lost interest.   Also the string progression is a little reminiscent of LZ “All of My Love” at a more upbeat tempo.  I like this writer and would like to hear more from them.

CATEGORY WINNERS 2007
Americana / Folk / Bluegrass
1.
A Town Like ThisPaul Reaney, Deeside, Connahs Quay, UK
2.
GravityLinda M, Toronto, ONT, CAN
3.
Yuletide BluesHank Woji, Houston, TX
Christian / Inspirational
1.
The Message On The Wall
Alvin Scroggin, Rowlett, TX
2.
A Friend In YouTim Dawson, Sheffield, Yorkshire and the Humber, UK
3.
Bless MeAlisha Jackson, Glenn Heights, TX
HM
Earth
Sharon Pisors, Waxahachie, TX
Country
1.
The Morning You
Andy Taylor, Marietta, GA
2.
She Takes My Breathe AwayRay Phillips & Richard Davis, Rowlett, TX
3.
Wheels Turn AroundJude Jones & David Carter, Cincinnati, OH
HM
Ying Yang ThangRay Phillips, Rowlett, TX
Instrumental / TV / Film / Classical / Jazz
1.
Near Life Experience
Louie Cate, Alexandria, VA
2.
Till There Was You BluesElizabeth Kirchgatter & Robert Couch, Green Valley, AZ
3.
Island Of My DreamsArek Religa, Justice, IL
HMBeyond HorizonArek Religa, Justice, IL
Love Songs / E-Z Listening
1.
She Takes My Breath AwayRay Phillip & Richard Davis, Rowlett, TX
2.
Forever
Mimi Balkey, Steve Ritter, Don Townsley, Dallas, TX
 3.
In My SoulLouie Cate, Alexandria, VA
Novelty / Patriotic / Children's
1.
America The Light Of The WorldForrest Lawson, Haskell, NJ
2.
MosquitoJasonHeald, Roseburg, OR
3.
Free to BelieveTerri Fann, Austin, TX
HMThe Loneliest LonelyMike Hyden, Tulsa, OK
Pop / Rock /Alt / R&B / Urban
1.
You Come To Me
Louie Cate, Alexandria, VA
2.
Coming In From NowhereMimi Balkey,Steve Ritter, Don Townsley, Dallas, TX
3.
BeautifulWalter Sargent, Huntington, NY
HMOut Of The BlueMichael George, Harrowsmith, Ontario, CAN
HMRather Be LonelyPhillip Marcus, San Francisco, CA
Singer Songwriter
1.
Family TreeMark Crisp & Richard Goorogian, Arroyo Grande, CA
2.
Broke Down CarouselR.X.Bertoldi, Everett, WA
3.
Till the Morning LightR.X. Bertoldi, Everett, WA
HM
These Old PhotographsMark & Robin Crisp, Arroyo Grande, CA
Americana/Folk/Bluegrass
A Town Like This by Paul Reaney, Deeside, Connahs Quay, UK
Almost Lucky by Carolann Ames, Poway, CA
Crescent City by David Spence, Austin, TX
Gravity by Linda M, Toronto, ONT, CAN
If That Ain't Love by Jan Seides, Austin, TX
Lovin Aint Love On A One Way Street by Wayne Richards, Lake Oswego, OR
One Step Up by R. X. Bertoldi, Everett, WA
Out of the Darkness by Mike Marino, Mickleton, NJ
Smoke And Ashes by Denise Rosier, Lake Forest, CA
Stuck out in the Rains by Mike Marino, Mickleton, NJ
The Ghetto Of My Heart by Louie Cate, Alexandria, VA
You Got the Blues by Dan Chandler, Hutchins, TX
You're Not Nice by Becca Bessinger, Murrayville, GA
Yuletide Blues by Hank Woji, Houston, TX

Christian/Inspirational
A Friend In You by Tim Dawson, Sheffield, Yorkshire and the Humber, UK
Bless Me by Alisha Jackson, Glenn Heights, TX
Blessed by Katie Miner, Franklin, TN
Christ, the Son of God by Charles Saunders, Denton, TX
Earth by Sharon Pisors, Waxahachie, TX
For His Glory by Jennifer Hildebrand, Longview, TX
Gypsy Road by Bree Noble, San Dimas, CA
Someday by Tonya Showalter, Lakeland, FL
The Homecoming Dance by Lisa Simmons, Lewisville, TX
The Message On The Wall by Alvin Scroggin, Rowlett, TX

Country
Ain’t Got No Brakes by Charles Sterling, Andy Timmons & T.A. Cook, Dallas, TX
Don’t Have To Love Me Back by Jerry Surber, Franklin, TN
Hot Louisiana Nights by Neil Andrews, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
I Don't Want To Want You But I Do by Hillary Chapman, NY, NY
It Aint Braggin by Dustin James, Nashville, TN
Kick It At The Casa by Randy Heavin, Oklahoma City, OK
My Wedding Day by Connie Mims, The Woodlands TX
Never Been Lonely by Stephen Boone, Garland, TX
Never Been Loved Before by Brad Henske, Plano, TX
One Night A Week To Go Drink by Mark & Robin Crisp, Arroyo Grande, CA
Only An Angel by Mark Patterson, Lee Parvin, Nancy Hall, Plano, TX
Real Life by David Spence, Austin, TX
She Takes My Breath Away by Ray Phillips & Richard Davis, Rowlett, TX
So They Say by Russ Case, Choiceland, Saskatchewan, CAN
Stuck In A Small Town by Steven Sumners, Gunter, TX
The Best In Me by Steven Richards, Wilmington, NC
The Last Snow In Nashville by Louie Cate, Alexandria, VA
The Morning You by Andy Taylor, Marietta, GA
There's Not A Day by Sharon McCowan, Brookline Station, MO
Wheels Turn 'Round by Jude Jones & David Carter, Cincinnati, OH
When That Woman Stepped Out to Dance by Michael Vance, Dallas, TX
Where Are My Car Keys by Mike Hyden, Tulsa, OK
Where is the Man? by Jan Seides, Austin, TX
Ying Yang Thang by Ray Phillips, Rowlett, TX

Instrumental/TV/Film/Classical/Jazz
Beyond Horizon by Arek Religa, Justice, IL
Free Spirit by Gina Canali, New Haven, CT
Island Of My Dreams by Arek Religa, Justice, IL
Near Life Experience by Louie Cate, Alexandria, VA
Remembrance by Gina Canali, New Haven, CT
Summer Heat by Chris Magennis, Beechworth, Victoria, Australia  
The Heart to Keep You Warm by Morri Hartgraves, Levelland, TX
Till There Was You Blues by Elizabeth Kirchgatter & Robert Couch, Green Valley, AZ
Winter Flight by Joel LaRiccia, Bay Village, OH

Love Songs/EZ Listening
Can't Deny This by Kim Emery, Phoenix, AZ
Chipped & Cracked by Mark Patterson, Lee Parvin, Nancy Hall, Plano, TX
Europe In Blue by Barry Flicker, Woodacre, CA
Forever by Mimi Balkey, Steve Ritter, Don Townsley, Dallas, TX
I Stand by Tony WIlliamson, Troutman, NC
In My Soul by Louie Cate, Alexandria, VA
Real Love Takes Time by Scott M. Nelles, Lewisvillle, TX 
She Takes My Breath Away by Ray Phillip & Richard Davis, Rowlett, TX
Sweep Me Off My Feet by Patti & Beau Burt, Hutchins, TX
The Shell Song by John Tracy Wilson, Aledo, TX

Novelty/Patriotic/Childrens
America The Light Of The World by Forrest Lawson, Haskell, NJ
Common Hero by Ray Phillips, Rowlett, TX
Femme Fatale by Jan Seides, Austin, TX
Fortune Teller With A Laptop by Genell Kelso, Dallas, TX
Free to Believe by Terri Fann, Austin, TX
It Ain't Easy Being Ugly by Ray Phillips, Rowlett, TX
Joey by Donna Lisa, Westfield, NJ
Kheng Kheng Crocodile by Donna Lisa, Westfield, NJ
Mosquito by Jason Heald, Roseburg, OR
Peanut Butter and Jelly by Kennan Zishka Stephen Leggio, Austin, TX
Platypus by Donna Lisa, Westfield, NJ
Sand and Clay and Ash by Michael Vance, Dallas, TX
Sea Biscuit by Patricia Lou Harris, Klamath Falls, OR
The Loneliest Lonely by Mike Hyden, Tulsa, OK

Pop/Rock/Alt/R&B/Urban
Beautiful by Walter Sargent, Huntington, NY
Coming In From Nowhere by Mimi Balkey,Steve Ritter, Don Townsley, Dallas, TX
Fast Food at First Sight by Noah Siegel, Silver Spring, MD
I Miss My Guitar by David Spence, Austin, TX
Inside Your Head by Mimi Balkey, Steve Ritter, Don Townsley, Dallas, TX
Out Of The Blue by Michael George, Harrowsmith, Ontario, CAN
Racin' to a Red Light by Mike Marino, Mickleton, NJ
Rather Be Lonely by Phillip Marcus, San Francisco, CA
Rich Man by Phillip Marcus, San Francisco, CA
Trouble by Deborah Trabolsi, Blauvelt, NY
Una Gota De Ti by Fernando Martins, Paco de Arcos, Portugal
You Come To Me by Louie Cate, Alexandria, VA
You Wear Beautiful by Aaron Corey, Garland, TX

Singer/Songwriter
Ain't Gonna Miss You by Tim Dawson, Sheffield, Yorkshire and the Humber, UK
Already Be There by Jan Seides, Austin, TX
Broke Down Carousel by R. X. Bertoldi, Everett, WA
Double X Man by J. C. Tubbs, Oregon City, OR
Family Tree by Mark Crisp & Richard Goorogian, Arroyo Grande, CA
Liar by Steve Smith, Lewisville, TX
Open Up Your Eyes by Josh Goldberg, Dallas, TX
Shores of Your Love by Jan Seides, Austin, TX
Supergirl by Becca Bessinger, Murrayville, GA
These Old Photographs by Mark & Robin Crisp, Arroyo Grande, CA
Till the Morning Light by R. X. Bertoldi, Everett, WA
Walking Blocks by Tyler Fortier, Eugene, OR


OTHER AWARDS
Summer Lyric Contest Winners
1.       Sleepin' In The Doghouse Tonight
2.         Time To Leave
HM      Storm Front On The Horizon
BEST SONG OF THE YEAR( picked from the list of the
 Best Songs of the Meeting,


"No Better Day"
 
song clip

by 
Ed Williams

DSA SONGWRITER OF THE YEAR( picked from the list of the
 Best Songs of the Meeting,


Grand Prize JudgeRoy Elkins
Founder & CEO of Broadjam 
Pop/RockAlt/R&B/Urban
Rick Beresford
Singer-SongwriterAl Johnson
Love Songs/Easy Listening
Pamela Phillips Oland
Christian/InspirationalJeff Ferguson
Country
Norman Devasure
Folk/Americana/Bluegrass
Alan Rhody
Novelty/Children’s/Patriotic 
Susie Luchsinger
Instrumental/Jazz/Film/Classical/Jazz 
Sonny Curtis

THE PRIZES
Grand Prize Winner will take away an Epiphone Masterbilt DR-500M (List Value $915!), METAJAM,  Broadjam's Artist Promotion Software which includes a 1 year Pro-MoB Membership ($200 value), and a 6 month Platinum Membership to SongU.com ($300 value)
First Runner Up receives 1 Day of FREE Recording and a Night in  Merlin's Cabin at River Sound Recording Studio on the Llano River in the Texas Hill Country,  METAJAM,  Broadjam's Artist Promotion Software which includes a 1 year Pro-MoB Membership ($200 value), and a 6 month Platinum Membership to SongU.com ($300 value)
2nd Runner Up receives 3 Month SongU.Com Platinum Membership
First Place Winners in each of the eight categories will receive $100 in cash, 1 year Broadjam MoB Membership, a 1 month SongU membership and a Dallas Songwriter Association 1 year membership.
Second Place Winners in each category will receive $50 in cash, and a Dallas Songwriter Association 1 year membership.
Third Place Winners will receive a Dallas Songwriter Association 1 year membership.


Finalists Compilation CD

All winning songs are on a CD Compilation that was given out at the Awards Ceremony. To get YOUR copy of the CD (while they last), you can make a donation to DSA through our online store. 
CLICK HERE TO DONATE TO DSA
http://67.64.97.19/DSA/default.htm

TOP TEN REASONS TO ENTER THE DSA SONG CONTEST

10. You can win a casio privia keyboard.

9. You can win cash

8. You can win a one year DSA membership or more.

7. You can get a free trial membership for entering online at Broadjam or Sonic Bids

6. Semifinalists get a chance to perform at the Awards or other DSA Showcases

5. Semifinalists and Winners get their names published in Songwriter Notes and the Press Release

4. Entrants can get peer review on their song

3. Winners get their songs on the awards soundcloud site.

2. Contest recognition looks good on your resume

1. We are a small contest, so you have a better chance to win.

Now in it's 26th year!

The DSA Song Contest is one of the longest running international song contests for amateur songwriters. Offering over $5,000 in cash and prizes this year, the DSA has EIGHT categories in all. See Contest Rules for eligibility.

MOTIVATING AND UPLIFTING SONGWRITERS THRU EDUCATION

MUSE-Motivating and Uplifting Songwriters thru Education
DSA is a 501 C-3 non-profit educational organization dedicated to providing to songwriters everywhere opportunities for learning about the craft and business of songwriting. Songwriters Newsletter is published by the Dallas Songwriters Association c/o Sammons Center for the Arts 3630 Harry Hines Blvd Box 20 Dallas, TX 75219.
Barbara McMillen, Editor, Founding President Emeritus http://www.barbaramcmillen.com

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