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Nashville Blues and Roots Alliance Widens Mission With International Blues Challenge Talent Search


Nashville, TN - The Nashville Blues And Roots Alliance (NBRA) is looking for Music City’s best emerging talent to showcase at the International Blues Challenge in Memphis in 2024. The organization is seeking a band and a solo or duo act to round out its delegation to the world-famous contest. There will also be Youth showcases with one contested selected to showcase in Memphis as well. All artists will receive travel and lodging stipends.

The move widens and enhances the NBRA’s mission to encourage cultural awareness around American roots music and celebrate the diversity behind the country’s greatest artistic export.

Interested artists can learn how to enter the challenge at The submission deadline is May 31st. Selected artists will compete in semi-finals at various Nashville-area venues in June, July and August. Organizers stress that iPhone videos are fine. “Just show us whatcha got.”

Founded in 2018 by artist manager Gina Hughes and blues aficionado Valerie Tuttle, NBRA has grown to include an industry savvy membership, including artists, venues, promoters, and educators. Despite the challenges posed by the pandemic, the organization has grown, recently securing 501(c)3 status and becoming the Blues Foundation’s official Nashville affiliate.

“We will expand our focus as membership grows and as our role in the community evolves,” said NBRA President John Walker. “We will do whatever we can to support the art and its purveyors, while encouraging healthy dialog regarding cultural awareness and celebration of the diversity that gave rise to American roots music.”

In the months to come, NBRA will expand its board and membership to more accurately reflect the American roots legacy and community, create programming to support education in schools, build promotional and developmental support for artists and venues, develop resources for music fans, cultivate cross-cultural collaboration and understanding, and grow the annual talent search year over year.

For more information about the Nashville Blues and Roots Alliance and its mission, please visit their website at

The International Blues Challenge represents the worldwide search for blues bands and solo/duo blues performers ready for the international stage, yet just needing that extra big break. The world’s largest gathering of blues musicians will take place on Beale Street, with over 20 clubs hosting the challengers and fans. In addition to featuring these final rounds of the prestigious blues music competition, the IBC event week will offer seminars, showcases, master classes, film screenings, networking events, book signings, and receptions for blues societies, fans, and professionals. IBC will be held January 24-28, 2023 on Beale Street in Memphis, Tennessee

The Blues Foundation preserves blues heritage, celebrates blues recording and performance, expands worldwide awareness of the blues, and ensures the future of the uniquely American art form.


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