By Hans Ebert
Often one wishes there was another word other than “finalist” when it comes to everything surrounding competitions. Sure, there needs to be a winner, but, perhaps, there can be co-winners.
In our recent songwriting competition built around the short story about Madison looking for inspiration, Nine Year Sister were named winners- and deservedly so as their original titled “Imagination” ticked all the boxes- and more.
It’s not only a beautiful song with some gorgeous harmonies, but tells the story of the main character Madison in ways I hadn’t thought about.
Same with the song submitted by Ingrid White from Cameroon.
Ingrid is a co-finalist in what is not really a competition, but something that’s hopefully more of a fusion of songwriters from all over the world interpreting someone else’s story in their own ways. It’s always good to get other perspectives on something to which you might be too close.
Like Nine Year Sister and other co-finalist Ryan Lee, the only entry from Hong Kong- and more about this city’s moribund music “scene”, and perhaps why this is at a later date and if there’s any cure in sight- Ingrid White knows her way around writing a song.
There’s also an enthusiasm listening to her speak about collaborations and the excitement in creating something new.
What she writes is not formulaic schlock. It’s original. The group of musicians, arrangers, producers and writers who were part of the judging panel, intuitively knew this when hearing the songs Ingrid- and others-submitted.
They heard and saw The Big Picture.