Will ReverbNation help pick the next voice star and create a new idol?

ReverbNation, the Durham company that helps new and emerging artists build entertainment careers, is making new vibes in the music industry with a deal to act as the curator for emerging talent in a new music artist competition.

Helping lead the effort to support UK-based Salute Music Makers is ReverbNation’s Simon Perry, a hit writer and producer himself who leads artist and repertoire for the Durham-based company that is adding as many as 50,000 artists a month.

Salute announced Wednesday that ReverbNation, which launched in 2006, had been selected to help review talent for its new contest that offers a $75,000 top prize (depending on the exchange rate with the pound) and five other finalists getting around $15,000 each. ReverbNation will help determine the “top 100 music makers” in the first round of judging for the contest, which was announced in April.

Feargal Sharkey, a former star with the Undertones who now works to help unsigned artists and is chief creative officer for Salute, praised ReverbNation in the announcement.

“ReverbNation [does] so much to help songwriters get a running start in their careers. Since empowering the songwriter and providing them with a platform to showcase their music is at the heart of the Salute Music Makers vision, we are always seeking to connect with those who share the same values, and this invaluable partnership now means we can offer a whole new exciting opportunity for the aspiring music makers of this world,” he declared.

Perry, who joined ReverbNation in 2013 and was promoted to his current “gig” as ‘Chief Creative Officer and Head of A&R in 2015, said the firm’s technology will provide “curation at scale” as artists make their entries. And Perry said he likes what Salute is trying to do. 

“Salute represents a new, and most importantly, tangible route for writers to attain the next level of their careers,” he explained.

Salute says ReverbNation is helping meet the needs of new and emerging artists as technology continues to reshape the music industry.

“Recent advancements in music technology enable music makers to create music almost anytime, anywhere and the quality of organic, original music emerging from home studios has never been higher and is constantly evolving,” Salute explained.

ReverbNation is “unique”

Perry is credited with helping develop ReverbNation’s curation technology as well as a talent incubator called CONNECT.

He brings plenty of experience as a writer and producer as well as knowledge of the U.K., hailing from Oxford. According to his profile at ReverbNation, Simon has worked with “many name artists, including Echo & The Bunnymen, Westlife, Sandi Thom, and Anthony Costa” while writing and co-producing a multi-million selling album for a winner in China’s version of “Idol.”

The music industry defines the A&R job as “the division of a record label that is responsible for talent scouting and the artistic and commercial development of the recording artist. It also acts as a liaison between the artist and the record label.”

Music Connection notes that Simon achieved industry recognition as a “multiplatinum writer/producer” before he “switched gears” to jojn ReverbNation  And Simon told the news site that ReverbNation is “unique.”

“ReverbNation presented an opportunity to solve that problem: a unique resource—between 30 and 50,000 new artists joining the site every month, bringing 250,000 copyrights a month,” he said in an interview. “There isn’t anybody else competing at that level.”