Contemporary folk-rocker Andy Brown has been voted the Grand Prize winner of Acoustic Test Drive 2010, a contest hosted by Taylor, Sonicbids.com and Elixir Strings® to support emerging artists. Brown was one of five semi-finalists that also included soulful singer-songwriter Anamieke Quinn, energetic songwriter-guitarist Jerry Stamp, and a pair of bands: polished pop-rockers Goodnight Sunrise and Senator and the New Republic. In the competition, each finalist was tasked with making a music video that included a performance with their Taylor 300 or 400 Series model and Elixir strings and cables. Brown’s video for his song “Happiness” whimsically depicts his initial meeting and subsequent courtship with a Taylor guitar.
Selected by popular vote, Brown received the news when he was up for another award at the Harvest Jazz and Blues Festival, held in his home town of Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada the weekend of September 17-19. “We had actually just performed [at the festival], and I had received calls from both Taylor Guitars and Sonicbids, which I missed as I was on stage,” Brown shared. “Less than 10 minutes after I found out we had won ‘Acoustic Test Drive,’ I also found out we had won the ‘Rising Star’ competition at the festival. I wish ever 10 minutes could be that good!”
As the Grand Prize winner, Brown (who already plays a GS6) will receive a selection of free gear from Taylor and Elixir, as well as session time at New York City’s Tainted Blue Studios to record with his new gear. Winning the competitions, he says, means a lot. “It’s so gratifying to receive recognition of the music we make and believe in so much. Being able to say we won a competition presented by Taylor Guitars and Elixir Strings is going to open up a lot of opportunities for us.”