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Artists wanted for 2017 Walk the Beat

Alex Doty • Apr 4, 2017 at 12:00 PM

Do you think you have what it takes to wow the crowds with your musical chops?

Then the 2017 Walk the Beat music festival, set for Aug. 19, may be the venue you’ve been looking for.

Event organizers will be accepting applications from interested bands and singer/songwriters from all genres of music until Friday, April 28.

Walk the Beat founder Dave Palmer said the event has attracted musicians from all over the state. In addition to Tri-Cities musicians, participants come from Holland, Muskegon, Grand Rapids and as far as Detroit.

“We probably have at least 30 (signed up now),” Palmer said, noting that about half of those are singer/songwriters and half are bands. “Now that it is this far, it’ll be a couple more weeks until it gets full.”

Walk the Beat plans to accept 50 artists to participate in this year’s event. All acts must submit a registration form, a music sample, official band/artist photo and a $25 registration fee.

Walk the Beat attendees will use a text-to-vote system to choose their favorite act. The winner receives a prize package that includes 40 hours of recording and production time with Bill Chrysler, a music video from D-Squared Creative, a website by Nick Lill design and a two-hour photography session with Michelle Risley Photography.

Palmer said the prize package is designed to help artists get their names out there.

“We try to get them set up with a decent setup so they can promote themselves,” he said. “No one else is doing this kind of thing for them.”

Musicians can also submit their work into the Walk the Beat Best Song contest for a chance at a $2,500 prize. Songs will be judged by the Third Coast Recording Company team. The contest, which costs $25 to participate, asks that musicians email a sound file of an original song to walkthebeatdave@gmail.com, with “2017 Best Song Contest — [Band/Artist Name] - [Song Title]” in the subject line.

The winner of the Best Song contest will be selected at Walk the Beat on Aug. 19.

Walk the Beat serves as the annual fundraiser for the Walk the Beat Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to promoting a healthy community through music.

Palmer said Grand Haven’s east side will once again serve as the hub for the 2017 event.

“Beechtree (Street) is still the main drag,” he said. “We’re sticking with the east end.”

Walk the Beat plans to have 25 venues and locations hosting bands and singers. Attendees will walk from location to location to hear the music and help determine the best musicians.

Palmer noted that attendees will also have the chance to win prizes by attending the various venues and by purchasing a raffle ticket.

“It’s just a gas of a day,” Palmer said. “It’s just fun for everyone.”

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