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first direct launches search for budding songwriters

27 Jun 2017

Competition on social media offers a money-can’t-buy experience

  • first direct bank teams with Jess Glynne and Little Mix collaborator
  • Rare chance to share the same studios as Adele and Michael Jackson

first direct has teamed with Brit award-nominated songwriter Jin Jin and one of Europe’s leading recording studios to create a competition that will give a group of budding songwriters a money-can’t-buy experience.

Jin Jin – who discovered chart-topper Jess Glynne and has worked with the likes of Sean Paul, Little Mix, Clean Bandit, Paloma Faith and David Guetta – is helping the bank create opportunities for young people to enter the music industry.

Through first direct ’s Facebook page, up-and-coming singer-songwriters are being encouraged to share their own original lyrics – and the stories behind them – to have the chance to win a two-day masterclass with Jin Jin at one of the UK’s leading recording studios.

Songwriting experts from MOBO will be responsible for judging the entries.

Eight budding singer-songwriters will be chosen for the masterclass with Manchester-born Jin Jin – real name Janée Bennett – which will take place at Metropolis Studios in west London at the end of July.

The prize will also include a rare opportunity to tour the studio complex, which is where Adele recorded her last two albums, 21 and 25. It’s also been used by an array of stars including Rihanna, Coldplay, Michael Jackson, Lady Gaga, Amy Winehouse, Alicia Keys and Queen.

Jin Jin also wrote Jess Glynne’s first official single, Right Here, which reached number 6 in the UK charts. She went on to pen other chart hits for her, including Real Love, Hold My Hand and Not Letting Go, which featured Tinie Tempah.

She recently set up her own publishing company, Raggamuffin Music, in conjunction with Bless Beats and Bucks. Through this she is focusing on developing the stars of the future and her first artist, 22-year-old Londoner Dom McAllister, is already gaining national airplay with his first release.

Zoe Burns-Shore, Head of Brand and Marketing at first direct , said: “Jin Jin really understands the music industry and is great at spotting hidden talent in the UK. As far as we were concerned she was the perfect partner for this competition, which was fuelled by our love of live music and being able to share that with our customers through our sponsorship of the first direct arena in Leeds.

“Giving people a chance to find out what it’s like to write and record their own song seemed like a brilliant way to celebrate that and to help someone achieve something amazing.”

The competition is open to anyone over the age of 18 and a UK resident who has an interest in songwriting, no matter how much or how little experience they have.

All they need to do is submit their lyrics – from a single line to a verse – via first direct ’s ‘Lyrical Miracle’ post on Facebook.

Zoe Burns-Shore added: “We know new music is being discovered on social media every day, so we’re excited to see what we can unearth through this competition.” 


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