2021 Jim Beam® Virtual National Talent Search

Rules and Guidelines

Canadian Music Week (CMW) is pleased to produce the Jim Beam® National Talent Search Tour which will take place virtually July 21 – June 10, 2021. Each of the resulting regional webisodes will be streamed via Indies.ca.

CMW and the Jim Beam® Virtual Talent Search Tour will provide 18 of Canada’s best new bands with their own virtual stage, ownership of their own recordings, and starring roles in this musical event that has rewritten the way homegrown independent talent is discovered. Each episode will focus on one Province and feature  performances from three local bands, as well as feedback commentary from three Canadian Industry Mentors.


&Back to Jim Beam Talent Search Main Page



  1. FREE for bands/artists and solo performers to apply.
  2. Band/Artist Online Submissions Entry: January 1 to March 14, 2021.
  3. All genres of music are eligible, with preference given to English and French languages.
  4. Judging Panel: Top 3 provincial finalists are selected by an industry jury for the following provinces: British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia
  5. Provincial Finalists are contacted as to their availability to record an audio/video track in-studio for one day. Recording dates will be scheduled between March 29 or April 30, 2021. **All dates are subject to change should COVID-19 restrictions impact recording locations. Artists will be required for a maximum of 5 hours for only one day to do their recording.


    • NOTE: Studio locations are pre-selected in key markets per province, and band/artist is responsible to travel to respective locations as follow:
      British Columbia: Vancouver | Alberta: Calgary | Manitoba: Winnipeg | Ontario: Toronto | Quebec: Montreal | Nova Scotia: Halifax
  6. Bands and solo performers are welcome to apply to the closest provincial contest market if their province of residence is not listed, but are responsible to make their own travel arrangements to/from recording location.
  7. Artists perform one (1) original song in a live studio recording setting. The session will also be multi-camera video-taped, then edited to produce a final video to use online for Public viewing and voting.
  8. Each provincial finalist (18 in total) will be automatically entered into the 2021 Jim Beam® Virtual National Talent Search competition, and receive a final mixed audio and video file from their recording session, to use at their discretion.
  9. Each applicant will automatically receive a complimentary delegation registration for the virtual 2021 Canadian Music Week, including Festival.
  10. Grand Prize winner to be selected by a panel of music industry judges and online public vote. The winning artist will be chosen to perform live at the Indies Awards during Canadian Music Week 2022, in Toronto.
  11. Jim Beam® Virtual National Talent Search grand prize includes return travel (if applicable, from recording studio market location listed above); accommodation based on double occupancy; complimentary passes to Virtual Canadian Music Week & Festival 2021; Canadian Music Week & Festival 2022 + per diems; a shopping spree at Long & McQuade; One (1) Canadian Musician Success Kit; and one (1) single professionally produced, recorded, mixed and mastered courtesy of Metalworks Studios, (in addition to the song recorded for your local contest market).


  1. The Jim Beam® Virtual National Talent Search competition is open to emerging artists and bands who compose and perform original material. Entrants may be either individuals or a group comprised of 2 or more individual members. The entrants must not be signed to a major record label. The competition is not open to directors or employees of the sponsoring stations or competition judges. Entrants must 19 years or older to be eligible to participate.
  2. All entrants must submit their best two original songs in an mp3 format AND submit a live performance video link (i.e. via YouTube) to www.indies.ca. The song entry may not exceed three and a half (3 1/2) minutes in length. Finalists should be prepared to perform their songs in a live recording studio environment.
  3. All entrants have the option to include a short introduction video about themselves.
  4. The lyrics entered must not include or contain any material that is obscene, offensive, defamatory, pornographic, threatening or abusive, content that is otherwise objectionable or would be deemed inappropriate, unsuitable or offensive, all as determined by Canadian Music Week in its sole discretion. Canadian Music Week reserves the right to disqualify any entries that contain the elements previously described. The same applies if video is requested.
  5. Entrants can submit one entry to their closest market only via www.indies.ca. Subsequent or multiple entries will be disqualified.
  6. Entrants and their collaborators will retain full rights to all work submitted for the contest. The entrant warrants and represents that the songs(s) submitted are sole, exclusive and original works of the entrants.
  7. Jim Beam® Virtual National Talent Search judging will be comprised of industry professionals. Entries will be judged on the following criteria:
    • Originality / Creativity
    • Artist / Band Performance (Overall musicianship of artist or band)
    • Charisma / Audience Appeal
    • Song Writing
  8. Entry constitutes permission to use winner’s names, likeness and voices for future publicity and advertising purposes without additional compensation. If there is more than one writer per submission, all co-writers must sign letter of agreement for the songs to be submitted, and must abide by all criteria to enter.
  9. Canadian Music Week (CMW) is paying for the Multi-track Sound/Video recording of song being used for the purpose of the competition, and artist will get to own and have full rights to exploit this recorded version of their song and to enter into any deals with labels or publishers or companies as they see fit. Each Artist will receive a mixed stereo master of audio & video at no cost.This agreement entitles CMW/Jim Beam®:  to use the referenced audio/video sound recording for promotional and brand advertising purposes on radio, television, Internet, or other accessible media for public use. There will be no royalties or other payments provided to the artists/composers by CMW/Jim Beam®:  associated with the use of this Song for the term. Any broadcast royalties collected by SOCAN from any commercial airplay would still go directly to composers and publishers of song.
  10. Entrants represent and warrant that their entry, including any material comprising their entry (e.g. name, user name, profile picture, etc., as applicable) and any material submitted with their entry (e.g. photograph, written submission, audio/MP3 files, video, or other form of submission, as applicable) (all such material, collectively, the “Entry Material”) is original to the entrant, have all necessary rights in and to the Entry Material to enter the Contest, including the consent of any third parties whose personal information is included in the Entry Material.
  11. Entrants can only win the Grand Prize as awarded.
  12. The competition is subject to all federal, provincial and municipal laws and regulations that may be applicable. NO PURCHASE NECESSARY.
  13. All decisions made by Canadian Music Week, and music industry panel with respect to the acceptance of any entry and eligibility of entries shall be final and binding. Jim Beam® Virtual National Talent Search reserves the right to extend the deadline of the competition and/or announcement of winners if needed.
  14. Entrants hereby agree to indemnify and hold harmless the competition entities (including Canadian Music Week, all participating radio stations and all sponsors) from and against any and all third party claims arising out of or resulting from (1) the entrant’s participation in the talent search; or (b) any breach or alleged breach of any of the warranties, representations, or agreements granted, made by or entered into by a entrant. The winners release sponsors from all liability regarding prizes won. All federal, provincial and local taxes, when applicable, are the sole responsibility of the winner.