A SINGER songwriter has won an unsigned band competition – landing himself a record deal in the process.
Ian Edwards, 25, of Bristol Road, St Leonards, was one of six acts to take to the stage at London’s Camden Underworld at the final of music website Top Of The Ox’s hunt for a new star.
And, after impressing the expert judging panel – which included Kaya Burgess from The Times newspaper – the local lad and his band were crowned overall winners.
He will now begin working with his new label, Crash Records, with a debut album due out in August next year.
Exciting times indeed then. “It is an incredible feeling to have won a national competition,” the musician – who has been compared to a darker James Blunt – told the Observer. “However, to be given the opportunity to record and release a full album is beyond words.
“I went up to Underworld just looking forward to performing on a stage which had been graced by the likes of Radiohead and Sheryl Crow and playing in front of the judges who were all industry experts.
“It was a shock to be announced as the winner, but I am already working hard and looking forward to a continued successful future.”
Onwards and upwards then, but what about the James Blunt reference? “It’s very easy to see the similarities in our music as well as his vocal tone.
“However, I’d probably say my writing is a little bit darker at times.
“He is certainly an artist and songwriter that I aspire to be as successful as. He is a great talent.”
Other influences the singer namechecks include Roxette’s Per Gessle, and he also took time to thank his new band, saying: “They have brought new life and energy into my songs.”
It seems 1066 Country could have another new star in the making and for anyone who cannot wait until next year for the album, a selection of his tracks can be downloaded from his website, www.ianedwards.net.