Canadian Songwriting Competition 2016/2017 Official Rules

  1. Each online entry requires the following information/elements:
    • An original song in mp3 format, Youtube link OR Soundcloud link (live performance entries must be submitted as a Youtube link).
    • A copy of the lyrics – Not necessary for instrumental songs. All languages are welcome. For songs in a language other than English or French, please provide an English translation.
    • An entry fee – Fees are charged per entry (see number 5 for details). We accept credit card payments and PayPal (special rates apply for participating association members).
      1. Early bird entry fee – $25
      2. Regular deadline fee – $30
    • A completed online application form.

*Please note we do not accept mail-in entries

  1. All songs must be original and not infringe any copyrights or any other rights of third parties. Songs with multiple writers should be submitted under one designated name/representative who has the authority to represent all co-writers. If an entry with multiple writers wins a category prize or the Grand Prize, it is the entrant’s responsibility to divide/share prize amongst co-writers in a mutually agreed upon manner. If the entrant is not one of the writers, he or she must relay all prizes to the writers of the winning entry.
  2. Entrant will retain all ownership rights to their submitted songs, and CSC will not have any ownership rights to any submitted songs.
  3. Submissions are open to all amateur and professional songwriters who live in Canada and/or are citizens of Canada. If there are multiple writers on a single entry, at least 50% of the writers must be Canadian. Please note that the SOCAN Hitmaker Prize pack is only redeemable by Canadian citizens. CSC will not provide a cash substitute for the SOCAN Hitmaker Prize Pack if the winning entry features non-Canadian writers. The competition is open to all ages, but please note that entrants under the age of 18 require parent or guardian approval. Employees of CSC, their families, subsidiaries and affiliates are not eligible. CSC reserves the right to disqualify entrants if, in the sole discretion of CSC, they or their submissions do not meet eligibility requirements. All fees are non-refundable.
  4. Contestants may submit as many songs, in as many applicable categories as desired. Please note that fees are charged per entry. For example – one song (regular deadline fee) submitted in 2 different categories will cost $60. 5 songs submitted into 1 category will cost $150. CSC reserves the right to extend entry deadlines and reduce entry fees for special promotions.
  5. All entries will be paid to Canadian Songwriting Competition. Charges on bank statements will appear under “CDN SW COMP”.
  6. Any applicable discounts must be redeemed at the time of application by entering the appropriate discount code. Refunds for promotional discounts will not be provided to entrants who have already applied without using a discount code.
  7. All submissions (with the exception of the live performance category) will be screened by a CSC committee before being sent to judges made up of music industry professionals, who will select the winners. Songs are judged based on the quality of the lyrics, melody, and overall originality. Production quality is not considered in our judging process.
  8. Submissions to the live performance category will be screened by a CSC committee. Top 10 finalists will be contacted by email, and entry to this category constitutes permission for CSC to post the performance onto the CSC Facebook page for public voting. (Please see below for details).


Live Performance: Video submission must feature a one-take, live-off-the-floor performance (no lip-syncing or overdubs). Top 10 Finalists in this category will be chosen by a CSC committee. Submissions will then be posted onto the CSC Facebook Page, and winners will be determined by tallying “likes” on Facebook. All genres accepted. Please submit a YouTube link for this category.

Under 18: Only entrants under the age of 18 may apply. All songwriters on the submitted song must be under 18. Please note that entrants must receive parent or guardian permission to apply to this competition.

Undiscovered: Only songwriters who have never had a publishing deal, record deal, or distribution deal (with a record label) for ANY of their works, are eligible for this category.

Canadiana: This genre is open to any and all songs that reference “Canadian” themes, history, historical figures, geography, or pop culture.


  1. All prizes will be awarded to the name as it appears on the entry form. The division of prizes among co-writers is the responsibility of the winners. If the entrant is not one of the writers, he or she must relay all prizes to the writers of the winning song. CSC assumes no responsibility in regards to ensuring the fair division of prizes amongst co-writers. Entrants agree to accept the final decision of CSC and its judges. There are no appeals.
  2. Within 30 days of CSC announcing Winners, they will be notified to claim their prize.
  3. CSC is not responsible for invalid email addresses, or any other issues that result in an entrant’s non-receipt of CSC emails including but not limited to, server/email malfunctions or automatic delivery to spam/junk folder.
  4. If necessary, CSC reserves the right to provide a cash substitute in place of prizes. A cash substitute value will be determined by CSC taking into account the wholesale value of the prize. Winners acknowledge that all taxes, fees, custom fees or any other additional costs will not be compensated, and are solely the responsibility of winners. Winners agree to release CSC and its sponsors from all liability respecting or related to the Competition, prizes and/or the delivery of prizes.
  5. CSC will use its best efforts to send out cash prizes in a timely fashion. It is each winner’s responsibility to contact sponsors directly to redeem sponsored prizes (CSC will provide contact information). Sponsors may take up to six months to schedule delivery of services (Eg. radio promotion campaign), so winners must contact sponsors within six months of winning. Winners will have one year to redeem all prizes before they expire. If winners have not received any portion of a prize after 180 days, it is the winner’s responsibility to notify CSC in writing by email within 30 days. If a winner fails to notify CSC, CSC will no longer be responsible for delivery of prizes.
  6. Finalists may be required to sign an affidavit within a stated time period, or entrant will be disqualified. Affidavits are subject to verification by CSC.
  7. Entrant gives permission for CSC to use winner’s name, likeness and voice for future advertising or publicity without additional compensation.
  8. CSC, its judges and sponsors are not responsible for any liability, injury, damages or loss that may result, directly or indirectly from the entrant’s participation in the competition, or the prizes to be delivered hereunder.
  9. By entering this competition, all entrants and/or their parents or legal guardians (if such entrant is a minor) agree to accept and be bound by the decisions of CSC and its judges which are final and binding in all matters. By submitting an entry into the competition, each entrant agrees to be bound by all terms of these official CSC Rules and Regulations as set herein or established from time to time.