Most of you should be familiar with Disc Makers, the company that provides CD replication services to unsigned artists. Recently they held the Disc Makers Independent Music World Series (IMWS) West showcase in Los Angeles. This showcase was open to bands of all genres and so it’s very pleasing to see the bluegrass/rock band Rose’s Pawn Shop walk away as the grand prize winner. The total prize value for all winners was $250,000 and RPS got a good share of that including recording gear, instruments, CD manufacturing services, and more.
Fiddle and mandolin player Sebastian St. John commented,
We don’t know what to say or where to start; we didn’t expect to win on account of the great competition thanks to the talented ears of TAXI and Billboard Magazine…With an upcoming, self-funded three-month tour only a month away, the timing couldn’t be better. Armed with this win, some new gear and CD manufacturing from Disc Makers we feel as though we can do anything.
Rose”s Pawn Shop was one of six finalists competing before a panel of fourteen judges that included Bobby Borg, the author of The musicians handbook: A Practical Guide to Understanding the Music Business and instructor at UCLA, Rob Hoffman, a producer and songwriter who has worked with legendary artists like Michael Jackson, The Temptations, Etta James and Christina Aguilera, and entertainment lawyer Owen Sloane, who currently represents Rob Thomas, Matchbox Twenty, The Pink Spiders and the American Idol finalist Chris Daughtry.
IMWS showcases are held in each of four regions throughout the country (Midwest, Southeast, Northeast, and West). The regional focus of IMWS helps independent musicians make an impact in their own backyard and make connections that can help advance their careers. The competition is open to musicians of all genres not currently signed to a major record label. Professional music screeners from TAXI select 100 semi-finalists from the entries and the editors of Billboard Magazine choose the six finalists.
Rose”s Pawn Shop is a band of 20-somethings who play bluegrass infused rock with banjo, guitars, mandolin, fiddle, pedal steel, upright bass and drums. Their sound is that of the jam bands on the fringes of bluegrass. While it would have been more exciting had a strait ahead bluegrass band won this competition, it is still encouraging that a band with this much bluegrass in their sound was found acceptable by the main stream.