Putney Musician Gets To Finals Of The UK Songwriting Contest

Achieving two final and two semi-final places in his first ever competition!

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Putney resident and self taught musician Al Cherin has made it to the finals of the UK Songwriting Contest. All his songs have been written in his small studio in his East Putney home.

The UK Songwriting Contest is an international contest attracting entries from professional songwriters and Song Publishers from around the world and judged by top music industry music producers.

Al told PutneySW15.com:
" It was the first song contest I have ever entered.  I entered four songs into the Jazz/Blues category and received two Final places for my songs ‘I’m Too Sentimental’ and ‘When I’m Gone’ I received two semi-final places for the other two songs.  I also entered a song into the Faith/Christian category and received another semi-final position.

A contest spokesman said:
"The UK Songwriting Contest directors and judges include some of the world's top producers who have worked closely with such artists as Paul McCartney, Ray Charles, Britney Spears and many others. There were over 5,000 entries this year and we are pleased that Al Cherin achieved such impressive results in this year's event and wish him every success in the future as a songwriter".

Al continued:
" This year I really made a concerted effort to pull out the stops and push myself forward.  On the advice of another musician I recently met, who loved my songs, I used the internet to network.

First I tried to contact a man I greatly admired and who I grew up watching on television – Laurie Holloway (the now retired Musical Director and pianist to the stars - Judy Garland, Cleo Laine, Liza Minelli, The Michael Parkinson Show, The Dame Edna Everage Show, Strictly Come Dancing etc).  I asked him if I could send him some of my Jazz songs to hear and critique.  He invited me to send some songs and his comments were incredibly generous and flattering.  He said that he liked all my songs and wished his late wife the wonderful American Jazz singer Marion Montgomery was here to pick some of my songs to sing. 


This praise gave me a lot of confidence.  I then found myself further networking online and before I knew it, a great New York radio station which specializes in vocal Jazz old and new, called ‘The Penthouse Radio’ were very keen to play my songs, putting them on daily rotation alongside Nat King Cole and Frank Sinatra.  Bob Perry, the man behind The Penthouse Radio has been very supportive.  www.thepenthouse.fm/


I then attracted the attention of vocalist John Demarco a great veteran American Jazz singer whose voice and debut album has received critical acclaim. John is interested in singing some of my songs. www.johndemarcoentertainment.com/reviews.php


In February I decided to enter the UK Songwriting Contest and I received the results a couple of weeks ago.


I have lived in Putney all my life and my ambition is to become a very successful songwriter and have my songs recorded by great Jazz/Show names like Tony Bennett, Jack Jones, Cleo Laine, Johnny Mathis, Nancy Wilson, Shirley Bassey, Curtis Stigers, Diana Krall, Michael Buble etc.   I also have a big contemporary song which would be great for the Classical group ‘Il Divo’

Though I am doing my best, for a non-performing songwriter who is not a particularly pushy person it is very hard to get the attention of the music industry people that matter (music publishers, record companies and managers) and who can really make things happen, therefore any exposure is great to have – I hear Tony Bennett is in town, so maybe he’ll read your article!!!"


July 2, 2010