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London Covers project hopes to revitalize music scene

Preston Lobzun | Interrobang | Lifestyles | April 7th, 2014

Spearheaded by Jordan Sojnocki of the London Youth Advisory Council, a new development to reinvigorate the city's music scene is in the closing stages of accepting submissions for their initiative dubbed London Covers.

The concept is simple; choose from a list of 10 songs that were selected via online poll, record you or your group performing it and then submit it. A panel of judges will choose five of the submissions and those five will then continue on to play a show at London Music Hall where one winner will be announced.

The winner receives a grand package consisting of recording time, a music video, professional website, promotional photos and three opportunities to open up for artists passing through the London Music Hall. Originally conceiving the idea last year, Sojnocki has worked alongside his colleagues to build this project that offers great opportunities for artists of all kinds.

“One of my goals when I first started working on this project was to bridge the gap between businesses and artists.”

Sojnocki explained that instead of offering cash, the most ideal rewards would be ones that are directly connected to other businesses and artists in the city. By looking into what musicians really need, London Covers teamed up with local studios and media productions to give them exposure and potentially open doors for students as well.

“One of my other goals was to open up mentor opportunities for students,” he explained. This means good things for people who may be interested in being an intern to build their portfolio and see their trade in action.

“We have a lot of awesome talent that's not being talked about enough,” said Sojnocki.

London historically has been a very important place for music in Canada, acting as the midway point between Detroit/Windsor to Toronto and is home to many staple venues such as Call the Office or Budweiser Gardens. At a local level, venues such as the late Embassy are still remembered fondly for their contributions to building a music scene and you will occasionally find the address of it tattooed onto people who attended shows there.

Despite the difficulties that arise in building a solid music scene, things seem to be turning around. Budweiser Gardens was given the title of top North American venue last year from Venues Today magazine and talks of allocating funds from the government to be put into programs here are in the works.

More than before, we're beginning to see a rise in shows that are held in houses or unconventional spaces as opposed to traditional venues and that, in my opinion, is a good sign as these shows provide intimate environments for bands of all ages and groups to get together without the headaches of playing your standard bar.

With all of this, the city appears to be moving in the right direction and the LYAC's project is proving to be part of that turning point. In the future, we can hopefully see the rise of a strong arts community to which Sojnocki agrees, “I truthfully see London moving that way.”

To find out more information about London Covers, visit Last day to submit entries is April 14.
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