Looks like Starbucks is going to enter the American Idol fray. The Starbucks Music Makers Competition is set to kick off with several partners in the near future and will focus on a search for unsigned, emerging artists who are well-suited for intimate cafe performances. In other words, folky, singer-songwriters…
The competition will follow the American Idol format with preliminary judging by industry veterans, and final judging by the public. The Starbucks performances will reportedly be held in: Boston, Massachusetts – New Haven, Connecticut – Burlington, Vermont – Providence, Rhode Island – Portland, Maine – Northampton, Massachusetts.
Starbucks main partner is the NEMO Music Festival who they’ve worked with in the past, and who has registered the starbucksmusicmakerscompetition.com domain. Other partners reportedly include SonicBids, BMI, Q Division Studios, Goombah, and OnStage, the Boston concern that will use its polling technology for public voting. SonicBids will be utilized for band/artist submissions.
The semifinalists will be asked to perform at the aforementioned locations during the end of August and beginning of September. Only artists based in New England will be eligible.
The Future: Could this be the test bed for Starbucks’ next-generation A&R efforts? With the locality of each Starbucks store, the concern has the ability to release albums by emerging artists by geographical area, and then break them nationally. The company could even develop a Music Maker’s “tour” for further promotion.