The Stefan George Memorial Songwriting Competition

Dedicated to TKMA's friend and 2013 Headliner Stefan George who passed away in 2015.

Saturday, May 6th, 12:00 — 2:00
on the Patio Stage (In front of the Museum of Art entrance)

Ten finalists (chosen from a field that typically numbers more than 40) will perform two original songs each for the Folk Festival audience and a panel of judges that includes fellow songwriters.
Contestants will be evaluated on:
  • Originality & Uniqueness
  • Song Structure
  • Arrangement
  • Talent & Stage Presence
First Place:
  • $100 Award
  • 25-minute set on the Plaza Stage at 6:00 on Saturday.
  • $50 Award

Congratulations to this year's winners:

1st Place
Eric Ramsey Scottsdale, AZ
As the two-time (and current) AZ Blues Showdown winner, Eric has performed in Memphis, Indianapolis, Portland, ME and Chicago. Not strictly a bluesman, Eric's original compositions reflect his musical influences, but come from a place all their own. Eric writes from experience about the human condition - at times sensitive, at times humorous, always thought-provoking. His arrangements and delivery encompass a spectrum of styles, from delicate fingerpicking to raucous bluesy slide.
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And thank you to the other 2017 finalists
(shown here in random order):

Sandy Hathaway Chandler, AZ
Sandy Hathaway’s songs are soulful, colorful and well crafted. She started writig and singing in the coffee shops and wine bars in 2000. In 2004 and 2016 Sandy placed in the top ten of the Tucson Folk Festival Songwriting contest. Her songs are laced with colorful metaphors and her vocal style has been compared to Joni Mitchell, Patty Griffin and Dar Williams. Sandy released two CDs in 2016.
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Doug Figgs Lemitar, NM
Doug Figgs is a multiple award winning Western music singer/songwriter from Lemitar, NM. He writes about the things that he knows best. Stories of the West, horses, and cowboys. He has toured the southwest extensively and continues to turn out his own variety of Western music, from hard driving songs with a tinge of southern rock, to beautiful ballads and everything in between.
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Bruce Carlson Mesilla Park, NM
Bruce writes and sings Folk/Americana with lyrics that paint songs of love, life and landscapes. One of his songs, Civil War ballad "As Soldiers Lie at Rest," was included on the Nashville album "This Is My America". Recently moved from New Mexico, Bruce's music hobby saw him play venues such as the historic Rio Grande Theatre, Cowboy Days, Music Under the Stars, cafes and vineyards. All sales from his 3 CDs go to Tucson charities. Bruce is pleased to now be involved in the Tucson music scene.

Jane Fallon Brookline, NH
With vocals that have been called “mesmerizing,” Jane has six CD’s and two books to her credit. She has won many awards, including first place in the Woody Guthrie Songwriting Contest and is called " one of the good artists in a sea of soulless clutter,” and “one of the good artists in a sea of soulless clutter, by Indie Magazine. She plays both regionally and nationally, and has 6 CDs and 2 books to her credit.
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Almond&Olive Chicago, IL
Almond&Olive (A&O), comprised of singer-songwriters Natalie Alms and Ollie Davidson, creates inspiring songs that span the folk and Americana genres, while also incorporating Alms’ timeless vocals and the duo’s distinct songwriting. Blended together, Alms and Davidson's voices sound made for each other, soaring and guiding the music through all the ups and downs of these finely crafted songs.

Bob Einweck Tucson, AZ
Bob Einweck - A Tucson musician for decades, Einweck will feature new songs from his upcoming release.

Dan Weber Vancouver, Washington
Award Winning songwriter Dan Weber has been described as “The Classic Mid-Life Overnight Sensation.” A gifted storyteller & engaging performer, in 2015 Weber won the prestigious Winfield New Songs contest for his tribute to Woody Guthrie & became a rare 3 time finalist in the prestigious Kerrville New Folk contest. An ex-Park Ranger, his songs have been described as “reminiscent of early John Prine” & the legendary Ramblin’ Jack Elliott said “I love Dan’s songs and he tells really good stories.”

Freddy Parish Tucson, AZ
"Smokey and atmospheric like a late night diner and the smell of burnt coffee, Parish's songs are real - almost too real for the idealistic college town he calls home. As only a man with long hair and tired eyes can, Parish has the rare ability to tell it like it is." -Weekly Volcano

David VanGelder Tucson, Arizona
David VanGelder started reading when he was 4 years old. His mother taught him a love of books and the way words could create images and movies in his mind. When he picked up the guitar at 16 it was only natural that he put music and language together and begin telling his own stories in songs. Inspired by the events of life his songs are sometimes sad, sometimes funny, and each song has something in it with which everyone can identify.