20th Year Anniversary Celebration

This year marks a major milestone for ISC as it is the 20th Anniversary since it was launched in 2002. ISC recognizes the hard work and passion that musicians put into their music and wants to celebrate these artists and provide opportunities to further their careers. One of the best ways to help artists is to give away more prize money and more merchandise. So, in honor of its 20th Anniversary, ISC has increased its overall prize package to $225,000 in cash and prizes to be shared by a total of 71 winners in 23 genre categories. The overall Grand Prize package has also been increased to almost $70,000 and includes $25,000 (US) cash plus merchandise and services.

Additionally, a Founder’s Choice Award of $10,000 (US) has been established. This one-time award is in addition to the overall $25,000 (US) Grand Prize selected by ISC’s esteemed panel of judges. The winner will be selected by ISC's founder, Candace Avery, and ISC's Listening Committee and gives them the opportunity to recognize and award their favorite song for the first time in ISC’s history.

What is ISC?

The International Songwriting Competition (ISC) is an annual song contest whose mission is to provide the opportunity for both aspiring and established songwriters to have their songs heard in a professional, international arena. ISC is designed to nurture the musical talent of songwriters on all levels and promote excellence in the art of songwriting. Amateur and professional songwriters and musicians are invited to participate. ISC has the most prestigious panel of judges of all the songwriting and music contests in the world, offering exposure and the opportunity to have your songs heard by the most influential decision-makers in the music industry.

Win cash, prizes, recognition, and exposure!

71 winners will share in the cash and prizes! ISC is a great opportunity for songwriters, musicians, and performers to win cash and prizes, further their music careers, and gain recognition and exposure in the music industry.

Categories include: AAA (Adult Album Alternative), AC (Adult Contemporary), Americana, Blues, Children's Music, Christian, Comedy/Novelty, Country, EDM (Electronic Dance Music), Folk/Singer-Songwriter, Instrumental, Jazz, Latin Music, Lyrics Only, Music Video, Performance, Pop/Top 40, R&B/Hip-Hop, Rock, Teen, Unpublished, Unsigned, and World Music. Entrants may submit as many songs as they wish - in the same category or in multiple categories.

In addition to cash and merchandise prizes, winners benefit from a multilateral promotional campaign designed to give international exposure and attention to their songwriting achievements. 

Depending on the category, submissions are judged on the following criteria:

• Creativity
• Originality
• Lyrics (excludes songs that do not have lyrics)
• Melody
• Arrangement
• Overall likeability

Some categories may have additional criteria. Production/Recording quality and vocal ability are NOT criteria (except in the Performance category in which Vocals are a judging criteria).


Tones and I, R.LUM.R, Illenium, Vance Joy, Gotye, Bastille, Kehlani, The Band Perry, Kimbra, Passenger, Kasey Chambers, Lindsey Stirling, Kate Miller-Heidke, Gregory Porter, King Charles, Gin Wigmore, Andrew Bird, for King & Country, Heather Morgan, Dave Berg, Gordie Sampson, Darrell Scott, Tom Hambridge, Omar Sosa, and more.  

Privacy Policy

Founder's Choice Award
September 1, 2021

... (MORE)

Thank you again for this great honor, I cannot tell you what an amazing feeling of validation it has given me. When I wrote this song I knew it was important, but I never imagined it would mean something like this for me. Thank you for believing in "songs."

– Scott Leger, Grand Prize winner, 2006



© 2021 International Songwriting Competition, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of the contents of any page of this website may be reproduced without written permission.