Published on November 16th, 2015 | by LTWF


Wilko Johnson Writing Award Winners

The Louder Than Words team, in partnership with Rock’s Backpages, Bloomsbury Press and Little, Brown are delighted to announce details of our 2016 Wilko Johnson Writing Award.


All young writers (age 25 or under on 13th November 2016) are invited to enter.

Each contestant composed a 350 word submission – prose, poetry or other formats of choice, titled:

The internet has revolutionised how we access music, how we engage with music and how we read about music. As the industry continuously evolves, our appetite for discovery and finding out more remains a constant. So what’s the story? If the revolution will not be televised, how might music writers ensure we get to hear of the next best thing?

Congratulations to:

1st Prize: Alex Tadros   2nd Prize: Abi Small   3rd Prize: James Musker

Our winner, Alex Tadros is from the UAE but moved to Manchester about four years ago. He’s just finishing a masters degree in multimedia journalism at MMU and hopes to get into music journalism and radio. His winning piece is:

Music writers have always had access to the next stash of music, sure the internet and the scary loom of modernity has arrived but this doesn’t mean that gigs aren’t still going on in the streets at night.  So many times I have heard guitar music is dead, gigging is dead, live music is dead, you know what? Go f**k yourself if that’s what you truly believe.

The way we listen may be digital but like time music will always be available in an analogue format too.

If you truly want to find a great new band, if you truly want to hear the next big act, don’t roam the vast wastelands of iTunes or Spotify, the internet has become nothing more than a dumping ground for every musician no matter how terrible or unworthy of social recognition they are, to visit on the weekend.

It all falls on deaf ears though doesn’t it, nobody wants to leave their house anymore just incase they have missed a minor update and that is why modern music journalism is doomed.

Not because people prefer to read on their I-pads

Not because the written word holds less value

Not because musical talent has been shot in the head

New Music shouldn’t be available to order on your phone like a pizza, and if it is then rest assured you just paid 99p for a group of pretty people who are good at marketing but most likely shit at creating music of value.

If you want to find the next thing you have to immerse yourself in the underground worlds that you can only find when the city goes dark. When you stumble into a near empty club at midnight and suddenly hear magic emanating off the stage, that my friend is when you are in the business of finding real talent.  The best bands in the world right now are the ones who place playing and making music above marketing and expanding their online presence.  We will always have suits controlling the money side of the music industry, please, please, please don’t let them take charge of the creative side too.

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One Response to Wilko Johnson Writing Award Winners

  1. Lorna says:

    Absolutely first class piece of writing a well deserved winner well done James Musker

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