2013 Music Contests

2011 Troabadour winner Matt Harlan (photo: Benko Photographics)
2011 Troubadour Matt Harlan
(photo Benko Photographics)

Congratulations to 2012 Telluride Troubadour winner Reed Waddle and band contest winners BlueBilly Grit.

Once again, songwriters and bands from around the country will take part in the nationally recognized Telluride Troubadour and band competitions, vying for beautiful instruments, cash prizes and well deserved recognition.

Be inspired by these fine songwriters and great string bands on Thursday and Friday at Elks Park (free workshop stage in downtown Telluride). Then enjoy the finalists on the Festival main stage on Saturday morning (band contest) and Saturday evening (Troubadour winner).


Telluride Troubadour Contest

The Telluride Troubadour Competition is a nationally recognized songwriter competition open to anyone who writes and performs original music and who is not currently signed to a major recording or publishing deal. Contestants are judged on the quality of the song’s composition, vocal delivery, and the overall performance. Finalists are awarded cash and prizes, as well as critical acclaim, well-deserved recognition, and a chance to perform on the festival main stage!

The Telluride Troubadour Competition has been held in conjunction with the Telluride Bluegrass Festival since 1991. Previous winners include Larry Good (1991), Cosy Sheridan (1992), Dan Sheridan (1993), Catie Curtis (1994), LJ Booth (1995), Michael Lille (1996), Jonathan Kingham (1997), Eugene Ruffolo (1998), Libby Kirkpatrick (1999), Mary Coppin (2000), Kris Delmhorst (2001), Deb Talan (2002), Rachel Davis (2003), Brian Joseph (2004), and Keith Greeninger (2005), Nels Andrews (2006), Gregory Alan Isakov (2007), Nathan Moore (2008), Mitch Barrett (2009), Robby Hecht (2010), Matt Harlan (2011), and Reed Waddle (2012).

2013 Rules and Guidelines

2013 Troubadour Prizes

2013 Troubadour Schedule

2012 Troubadour Winner

Congratulations to the 2012 Telluride Troubadour winner Reed Waddle and the other top finalists and the other top finalists: Drew Kennedy (#2), Cary Cooper (#3), Cassie Peterson (#4) and Michaela Anne (#5). Reed will perform on the main stage on Sunday evening at 6:30 - stream his performance live on KOTO.org.

2012 Troubadour Finalists

Once again we were blown away by the nearly 450 entries we received from all over the world. The originality, craftsmanship, and creativity of the entries consistently impressed us. Congratulations to the following finalists who will be performing in the final 2 rounds on Telluride's Elks Park stage. As well these artists will be performing throughout the festival in in-the-round sets at Elks Park, on-air on KOTO, and for short 'tweener sets on the festival main stage.

2012 Troubadour Honorable Mentions


2013 Telluride Band Contest 

The Telluride Band Contest is a nationally-recognized bluegrass contest. Finalists are awarded cash and prizes, as well as critical acclaim, well-deserved recognition, and a spot on the 2014 lineup to perform on the festival main stage. Past winners include the Dixie Chicks, Nickel Creek, Ryan Shupe & the Rubberband, the Pagosa Hot Strings, The Badly Bent, Greensky Bluegrass, Spring Creek, Blue Canyon Boys, The Hillbenders, Nora Jane Struthers & the Bootleggers, Run Boy Run, and 2012 winners BlueBilly Grit.

2013 Band Competition Schedule

2013 Telluride Band Competition Prizes

2013 Contest Registration

Telluride Band Competition Rules

Bands Score in These Categories

2007 Troubadour Winner  Gregory Alan Isakov
2007 Troubadour Winner
Gregory Alan Isakov

Tips from the Telluride Band Contest Judges

2012 Contest Finalists

Congratulations to 2012 band contest winners BlueBilly Grit, and fellow finalists Wayward Vessel (2nd place), Horseshoes and Hand Grenades (3rd place) and Hey Mavis (4th place).