The New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC), Larry Rosen Productions (LRP), and Concord Music Group announce a landmark agreement to provide an exclusive recording contract offer to record and release an album on Concord Records to the winner of the 2014 Sarah Vaughan International jazz Vocal Competition, now known as the SASSY awards.
The Concord arrangement is a three- year commitment by the record label to present an exclusive recording contract offer to the winner of the annual competition. The deal was struck between Concord GM Mark Wexler and the Sarah Vaughan Competition producer, Larry Rosen. This recording prize will be added to the package of awards already presented to the Competition winner, which includes a $5,000 cash award, airfare to the competition finals event on November 16, 2014 at NJPAC, and the opportunity to perform as part of the JAZZ ROOTS Concert Series.
“All of us at Concord are thrilled to be a part of the Sarah Vaughan International Jazz Vocal Competition,” said Mark Wexler, General Manager/Senior Vice President, Concord-Telarc Group. “It’s great to be involved in the process of finding and nurturing new artists, and working together in the development of their careers.”
The Sarah Vaughan Competition is the only international jazz vocal competition of its kind and provides a platform for one outstanding jazz singer to launch a career within the music business. The first two years of the competition saw nearly 1,500 total song entries which music fans shared, listened, voted, commented on, and liked. Furthermore, the competition website received 2 million hits during last year’s competition alone, resulting in nearly one million votes for contestants from fans around the globe, making this the world’s most visible jazz vocal competition. Judges for the competition include Grammy Award-winning bassist Christian McBride, WBGO morning jazz host Gary Walker, multiple Grammy nominee Nnenna Freelon and legendary producer Larry Rosen.
Larry Rosen said, “We are so happy to help discover and mentor great young female jazz vocalists in the tradition of Sarah Vaughan. In our first season it was Cyrille Aimee, last year it was Jazzmeia Horn, and now, with the assistance of our global partner, Concord Records, we are able to provide a Recording Contract, thereby granting our 2014 Sarah Vaughan SASSY AWARD winner worldwide exposure and hopefully chart-toping success. We are changing lives!”
The competition itself recalls the humble beginnings of jazz icon Sarah Vaughan who, back in 1942, was a Newark teenager and winner of an amateur singing contest at the legendary Apollo Theater. That memorable night helped launch the lifework of one of the most successful, influential jazz vocalists in the history of American music. “It has been decades since Sarah Vaughan first graced the stage at the Apollo Theater but her memory lives on. That evening, which singlehandedly changed Vaughan’s life, is what we replicate through this jazz vocal competition,” says John Schreiber President and CEO of NJPAC. “We are thrilled to offer the next generation of talent an historic opportunity to carry on Sarah Vaughan’s legacy.”
There is still time to audition for this prestigious competition; submissions are due by September 2nd at 5pm. For contest rules and further information visit Sarahvaughancompetition.com.
The Competition: Female vocalists from around the world can submit applications online atwww.sarahvaughancompetition.com.
Five finalists will receive airfare to the finals to perform at the TD James Moody Democracy of Jazz Festival in NJPAC’s Victoria Theater on November 16, 2014 before a panel of judges comprised of some of the leading jazz vocalists today as well as others in the jazz and recording industry. The Grand prize winner will be presented an offer to receive a Concord Records exclusive recording contract, a $5,000 cash prize, and an opportunity to perform on JAZZ ROOTS concerts across the country. The 2nd Place Winner will receive a $1,500 cash prize and the 3rd Place Winner will receive $500.00. The competition is open to solo female vocalists who are not signed to a major record label. Singers must submit audio clips online through an interactive platform powered by Indaba Music. The public can vote online to help select the finalists who will be announced on October 10. Singers will be judged on vocal quality, musicality, technique, performance, individuality, artistic interpretation and ability to swing. This competition will be held November 16th at the Victoria Theater and will feature performances by finalists as well as rare concert footage of Sarah Vaughan. Produced by JAZZ ROOTS: A Larry Rosen Jazz Series with NJPAC, WBGO Jazz88.3FM, the Jazz Education Network (JEN) and Indaba Music and Concord Music Group.
Produced in association with JAZZ ROOTS and WBGO Jazz88 Victoria Theater – Sunday, Nov. 16, 2014, 3pm – $29.00 – $39.00 Tickets available at: or www.NJPAC.org or ?Box Office 888.GO.NJPAC (888.466.5722)