Falling Short, Standing Tall

Since mid-February, CBC has been running the Searchlight competition in its search for Canada’s “best new artist”. It’s based on a fan-voting system, with music appreciators casting their daily ballots in support of their favourite artist for a particular region.


Our “Calgary” region started with over 100 acts in the running in the first round. Our generous friends and family lifted us into the second round to compete as one of the
region’s noteworthy artists. We entered the contest almost as an afterthought, and there were many top-notch acts that didn’t continue on, so we were rather surprised to find ourselves amidst the selection of 20. 


Four days of voting later, we were in the region’s top 5. This was very clearly due to the support of those around us - people who were specifically asking us to remind them to vote, despite our fears of becoming obnoxious. In fact, we didn’t really run a Facebook campaign - our moms did! This contest has seven rounds, but even just making it to the third one gave us fresh exposure. Over the course of the contest, our music received nearly 500 new plays on our CBC page. I also did an interview on CBC Calgary’s The Homestretch, and our entry song “This Old House” got played on air in the midst of coverage for the provincial budget announcements!





By this time, it couldn’t be helped - our hopes had risen. I was tuned into CBC for two hours during my drive up to Edmonton, itching to find out if we’d made it into the nation’s top 24. When Doug Dirk stated
 that us listeners were about to hear from Calgary’s finalist, I held my breath through the extended pause. When music finally burst through above the hum of our spinning tires, however, it wasn’t the tin-can sound of Mike’s strummed acoustic guitar.


Calgary’s regional finalist is Randi Boulton. She sounded so thrilled to have been chosen, and I’m glad for her. Locomotive Ghost benefited more from this contest then I had imagined, and we had the opportunity to plug our Seasons album project on CBC. As fun as this ride has been, we have quite a few other things that we need to devote our energy to, including playing tomorrow night’s sold-out show with Brasstronaut and The Collective West, promoting our upcoming Spring record, and recording our Summer record.


For the last several days, we’ve all been glowing from the love and support you’ve shown us. Though we may have fallen short in this contest, we’re standing taller than we ever have before.



2 comments

  • Lillian Szpak

    Lillian Szpak

    hi Mike and Locomotive Ghost, congratulations on Standing Tall!! We were there for you, along with thousands of others...you're amazing! we love your "thank you" snow etching - so Canadian!! Good luck and we are proud to know you! Love Auntie Lillian and Uncle bob xoox

    hi Mike and Locomotive Ghost,
    congratulations on Standing Tall!! We were there for you, along with thousands of others...you're amazing!
    we love your "thank you" snow etching - so Canadian!!
    Good luck and we are proud to know you!
    Love Auntie Lillian and Uncle bob xoox

  • J. Blier

    J. Blier

    Hey Locomotive Ghost, I'm a family friend from Mike's past. It was so exciting to follow your progress during this contest! We were voting in Ontario, too. Joyce

    Hey Locomotive Ghost, I'm a family friend from Mike's past. It was so exciting to follow your progress during this contest! We were voting in Ontario, too.
    Joyce

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