Bite of the Big Apple

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ONE lucky Scottish band has the chance to play in New York if they win an up-coming competition.

Next week sees the Big Apple Awards final being held at the Garage on Sauchiehall Street where the bands will battle it out for the chance to make an appearance at NY’s Scotland Week next year.

The Big Apple Award is a collaborative partnership between Scottish music charity Nordoff-Robbins Music Therapy, Creative Scotland and the American-Scottish Foundation.

The ongoing competition has seen the numbers whittled down to five of what is perceived to be the best of Scottish music.

And not only will the successful group play in New York City, but it will also have the chance to audition for Ian Ralfini, president of Blue Note Records which is a division of EMI US.

One of the industry experts involved with the awards is songwriter Roddy Hart, who has worked with the likes of Eddi Reader, Kris Krisofferson and Roseanne Cash.

Roddy, who played for the Queen at the 10th anniversary of the Scottish parliament, said: “The Big Apple Award is an exciting competition to be part of, shining a light on Scottish talent and providing an amazing platform and opportunity for bands and songwriters to be heard and make their mark”.

Joining Roddy will be another musician with top credentials: Real Radio DJ Billy Rankin.

Billy found fame both as a solo artist and with notable 70s bands such as The Sensational Alex Harvey Band, Bowie’s Spiders From Mars and Nazareth.

More recently, in 2005, he penned Do It! For Meatloaf’s comeback album.

Completing the list of music industry experts are Yvonne McLellan from Island Records, Matthew Rumbold – who signed Idlewild – music journalist Tim Barr and Clash Music’s Robin Murray.

Yvonne, who was a member of the judging panel for T in the Park’s T-Break stage this year, said: “I’m really excited about this addition to the Scottish Music Awards.

“With the amazing talent that exists in Scotland at the moment, being given the chance to gain exposure in this way with such fantastic prizes is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

“I can’t wait to go through all the entries to find some hidden gems”.

The Big Apple Awards final starts at 7pm on Thursday, October 13 and tickets cost £5.