+ WAM Song of the Year Winners 2004

+ WAM Song of the Year Finalists 2004

+ Categories & Prizes

+ Schools

+ Official Rules & Conditions

+ F.A.Q.

+ Brochure & Entry Form

+ WAM Membership

+ Judges

+ Judging Guidelines

+ Song of The Year 2003 - Past Winners

+ About WAM Song Of The Year

+ About WAM


WAM Song Of The Year 2004
Boddington teenager Lauren Brede has beaten off the challenge from 1342 other entries to win the coveted 2004 WAM Song of the Year Award with her beautiful song, “Time For You To Go”. She was presented with her award at the Fly By Night Club by The Hon. Sheila McHale, Minister for Culture and the Arts.

Lauren has also taken away the Outstanding Regional Entry Award with the same song, which she performed earlier in the evening. This is a new category in 2004, with all entrants from regional areas included regardless of the specific categories that they had entered.

A previous winner (2001) in the Children’s category, Lauren’s songwriting has already been widely acclaimed and the future seems bright for this young West Australian talent, who has also received acknowledgments from The Boyup Brook Country Music Festival, the Australian Songwriters Association, and Music Oz.

As her prize Lauren has won a substantial amount of recording time, along with assistance in producing, mastering, graphic design, manufacture and promotion of a CD release. A compilation CD of the category winners will also be released for promotional purposes as soon as recordings become available.

Judging for the 16 separate categories was carried out by independent panels of industry experts, with 49 judges donating their time in 14 separate panels over a three week period. See the Judges Section for information about the selection criteria and judging panels.

The WAM Song of the Year has been running since 1989, and is the state’s premier songwriting competition with over $30 000 in cash and prizes up for grabs.

WAM Song of the Year, presented by SmokeFree WA, is proudly sponsored by Healthway.

Commercial / Contemporary Pop Category
Cassie Swinney, Alistair Watson & Escher - "Breathe"

Country Category

Rob Findlay & Haley Mason - "Dirty Liar"

Electronic / Dance Category
Tim Macnamara & Diego Bosco - " Hit ‘5’ "

Hard Rock / Metal Category

Mike Sukys - "Bay of Martyrs"

Indie Rock / Punk Category

James Crombie & The Bank Holidays - "Tread Easy"

Jazz Category

Michael Pigneguy & Sian Brown - "West Bank Moon"

Roots Category
Gerard Maunick - "Slipping With the Blues"

Urban Category

Bjorn Berlinger & Nathan Jamieson - "Wait a Minute"

Love Category

Frans Bisschops, Jasmine Yee & Michael Miller - "Blame

Gospel Category

Chad Blondel - "Take Over"

ASME Upper Secondary (Years 11-12)

Melissa Erpen – "Radio Play"

ASME Lower Secondary (Years 8-10)

Danni Stefanetti – "Home Sweet Home"

ASME Primary Category

The Flairz – "Sidewalk Surfer"

Indigenous Category

The Hill (John Bullen, Jarred Wall) - "Hardway"

Oustanding Regional Song of the Year Category

Lauren Brede - "Time For You To Go"

WAM Song of the Year 2004 Winner Lauren Brede recieves her prize.
WAM Song of the Year winner Lauren Brede accepting her award
at the presentation ceremony.
Photo by Chris O'Halloran.

WAM Song of the Year 2004 Winner Lauren Brede performs.
WAM Song of the Year winner Lauren Brede performing at the presentation ceremony.
Photo by Chris O'Halloran.



Of the 1300 odd songs entered in the West Australian Music Industry Association Inc’s WAM Song of the Year 2004, presented by Smokefree WA, 75 works have been nominated by industry panels as finalists for the WAM Song of the Year title.
These songwriting finalists span many cross sections of the music industry, from established artists of significant profile in WA; to previously unknown talent from across the state, harking from Kojunup to Boddington; to up and coming composers fast making their mark. These are the songwriters to watch.

The WAM Song of the Year 2004 closing ceremony will be held at the Fly By Night Club in Fremantle on Thursday September 16. The evening will feature performances from past winners including Andrew Horabin and Lynn Hazelton, as well as some of this years finalists; whilst the official WAM Song of the Year will be presented by the Minister for the Arts the Hon. Sheila McHale. Tickets are available from WAM on 9227  7962 and be warned - it will sell out.


:: Commercial / Contemporary Pop Category ::
Paul Black - I Get By
Paul Black, Chris Gibbs, Stuart Stuart - King for a Day
Julian Hewitt, Susannah Legge, Gavin Crawnour - The Hype
Cassie Swinney, Alistair Watson - Breathe
Leena Thavisin - Tail Lights

:: Country Category ::
Larry Dunne   - You're Always On My Mind
Chris Edmondson  - Amazing Thing
Rob Findlay, Haley Mason   - Dirty Liar
Lynn Hazelton  - That's the Way Love Goes
Lynn Hazelton   - You-Rely

:: Electronic / Dance Category ::
Ben Chase, Riyanna Harman - Dawn of a New Day
Kaz Hamilton - Get Up On Ya Feet
Adam Ismail - R.P. McMurphy
Randa Khamis  - Groove
Tim Macnamara, Diego Bosco  - Hit 5'

:: Hard Rock / Metal Category ::
Mike Sukys - Bay of Martyrs
David Lynch, Jake Francis, Terrance Clayton - Made of Gold
Mike Sukys  - Whoever Said We're Leaving
El Horizonte  - Gypsys and Jewels
Zeta Theory   - Leave Without a Scar

Justin Burford - Rough Diamonds
Damian Crosbie and David Namour - Eyelashes
Jamies Crombie and The Bank Holidays - Tread Easy
Simon Okely - Part The Ocean
Snowman - Zombies On The Airwaves of Paris

The Hill (John Bullen/Jarrad Wall) - Hardway
Reno James - Tribe Home
D.R Morrison - Ancestor's Voice
Doreen Pensio - Look Inside
Gina Williams - Mr Neville

:: Jazz Category ::
Tim Macnamara, Diego Bosco - Hit 5'
Jeff Mickley - You Bring Out The Best in Me
Michael Pigneguy, Sion Brown - West Bank Moon
Myles Wright  - Forest Walk
Myles Wright  - Scat

:: Roots Category ::
Toby Beard  - You Can't Afford Me
Steve Connolly  - Taliban Blues
Dave Mann, Mark Lowes - Wake Up
Gerard Maunick  - Slipping With the Blues
Gina Williams  - Your Eyes

:: Urban Category ::
Bjorn Berlinger, Nathan Jamieson  - Wait a Minute
Troy Frank, Kurt Johnson  - Grownin' Up
Andy Hill, Nic Cappelle  - Media-ocracy
Tim Macnamara, Diego Bosco  - Hit 5'
James Majer  - 8 Ohms of Ohms

:: Love Category ::
Tenille Bentley, Michael Craigmille, Tom Haran - Reality
Frans Bisschops, Jasmine Yee, Michael Miller - Blame Me
James Brunt - Close to You
Dave Mann  - Surrender
Jodie Tes  - Unravelling

:: Gospel Category ::
Ruairidh Anderson  - Take Me
Chad Blondel  - Take Over
Mark Cullen  - Amazed
Emma Everett  - Someday
Paul Morrison  - Wonderful

:: Oustanding Regional Song of the Year Category ::
Rebekah Barnett, Nick Spencer, David Petchell - Why is that so
Emily Bidwell  - Hypocrite
Lauren Brede - Forgive My Heart
Lauren Brede  - Time For You To Go
Gene Pool - Bass Player

:: Primary School Category ::
Jessamy Baker -The Top of The Mountain
The Flairz - Rock and Roll Ain't Evil
The Flairz - Sidewalk Surfer
The Flairz - Black Fox
Chelsea Jones - Rainbow

:: Upper Secondary School Category ::
Lauren Brede - Red Wine and Roses
Lauren Brede -Time For You To Go
Melissa Erpen - Radio Play                       
Melissa Erpen - Excuse Me
Skinner/Hughes - I Pledge Allegiance

:: Lower Secondary Category ::
Wesley Fuller - First Love
Lyndon Blue - Night In The Life
Lyndon Blue - R.A.T Allegation
Danni Stefanetti - Home Sweet Home
Danni Stefanetti - Magic Spell

Commercial/ Contemporary Pop
Award presented by
Festival Mushroom Records
  • $1,000 Cash
  • 1 day free recording time at Blackbird Sound Studios, engineered by Dave Parkin


Blackbird Sound Studios is engineered by Dave Parkin

Award presented by
Clancy's Fish Pub
  • $1,000 Cash
  • 1 day free recording time at Revolver Sound Studios, engineered by Vic Manfrin and
    Ben Glatzer

Revolver Sound Studios is engineered by Vic Manfrin and
Ben Glatzer

Electronic/ Dance
Award presented by

  • $1,000 Cash
  • 1 day free production time at Gavin Tempany Sound Engineering Services with Gavin Tempany



Gavin Tempany Sound Engineering Services is engineered by Gavin Tempany

Hard Rock/ Metal
Award presented by
Madness Media Creative Consulting

  • $1,000 Cash
  • 1 day free recording time at Bergerk!, engineered by Alan Smith


Bergerk! Studios is engineered by Alan Smith

Indie Rock/ Punk
Award presented by
EMI Music Australia
  • $1,000 Cash
  • 1 day free recording time at Debaser, engineered by Andy Lawson, Joel Quatermain, Rodney Aravena

Debaser Studio is engineered by Andy Lawson, Joel Quatermain & Rodney Aravena.

Urban (Hip Hop/R'n'B/ Funk/ Soul)
Award presented by
Sony Music

  • $1,000 Cash
  • 1 day free recording time at MBT,
    engineered by Rob Caruso


MBT Publishing Studio is engineered by Rob Caruso.

Award presented by

  • $1,000 Cash
  • 1 day free recording time at Loop Recording Studio, engineered by Don Morison


Loop Recording Studio is engineered by Don Morison

Roots (Blues/ Folk/ Acoustic)
Award presented by
Blues @ Bridgetown
  • $1,000 Cash
  • 1 day free recording time at Studio Couch, engineered by Shaun O'Callaghan


Studio Couch is engineered by Shaun O'Callaghan

Award presented by
St. John Ambulance

  • $1,000 Cash
  • 1 day free recording time at Rhythm Records, engineered by Eddie Parise


Rhythm Records is engineered by Eddie Parise

Award presented by
Trinix Computers

  • $1,000 Cash
  • 1 day free recording time at Scope Music, engineered by Kieran Kenderessy


Scope Music is engineered by Kieran Kenderessy.

The Australian Society for Music Education (ASME) holds an annual national conference and this year ASME’s WA branch has partnered with WAM Song of the Year to determine which young West Australian prodigy they will send to represent our state at the conference’s Young Composers Project. The project is an extremely exciting developmental opportunity for young artists, offering workshops with leading Australian musicians.

If you would like to enhance the songwriting activity with your classes, consider holding a WAM Songwriting Workshop. This two hour incursion is run by active musicians Roly Skender and Looweeze de’Ath and is available for years 5 to 12. Plus if you’d like a booster for your contemporary music program you can obtain a WA Music Education Pack – an extensive teacher resource developed by ArtsEdge and the state government.

Contact Emma at emma@wam.asn.au, 9227 7962 or tollfree on 1800 007 962 (regional only).
(Years 1-7)

Award presented by
Woodside Energy Ltd.
  • $500 Cash
  • 1 day free recording time at Witzend Recording
    Studio, engineered by Alan Dawson

Witzend Recording Studio has both 25 years experience and professional quality equipment. Modern digital or good old analog, it�s a great place to record.
Lower Secondary
(Years 8-10)

Award presented by

  • $500 Cash
  • 1 day free recording time at Gibsonic Sun
    Studio, engineered by Andrew Gibson

For a sound job, Andrew Gibson, with his vast experience, will do his best to get you sounding your best.
Upper Secondary
(Years 11-12)

Award presented by
  • A place at the ASME National Young
    Composers Project in Melbourne,
    July 2005, including airfare and
  • 1 day free recording time at Cazfair
    House, engineered by Steve Bond

Cazfair House is engineered by Steve Bond.

Award presented by
  • $1,000 Cash
  • 1 day free recording time at Planet Sound
    Studios, engineered by Les Williams and
    Laurie McCallum


Planet Sound Studios is engineered by Les Williams and Laurie McCallum.

Outstanding Regional Song of The Year
(Judged from all Regional Entries in Any Category)
Award presented by
Belt Up On The Roads

  • 3 days free recording time at Groovehead,
    engineered by Mick Stephens
  • 2 nights accommodation at
    Riverview Apartments


Groovehead has an acoustically designed Digital recording studio featuring a full ProTools suite.

GRAND PRIZE - WAM SONG OF THE YEAR (Judged from the first prize winners in each category)
Award presented by
SmokeFree WA
  • 3 days additional recording time at Satellite
    Studio, recorded and produced by Jeremy Allom
  • Pressing of 500 promotional singles/ EP’s with
    barcode thanks to Westlink Multimedia/ MGM
  • CD artwork designed by Madness Media
  • CD mastering by James Hewgill Music
  • Video clip production thanks to Siamese
  • Delegate Double Pass to the Ausmusic Forum


1. WAM Song Of The Year 2004 is open to all residents of Western Australia. The song must be the original work of the entrant and the entrant must not be signed to a major record label (excluding distribution deals). Entries must not compromise WAM’s obligations to it’s principal sponsors.

2. Song Categories that can be entered are - Genre Categories: Country; Commercial/ Contemporary Pop; Electronic/ Dance; Hard Rock/ Metal; Indie Rock/ Punk; Jazz; Roots; Urban. Special Theme Categories: Love; Gospel. Limited Entry Categories: Indigenous (open only to Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander songwriters). ASME School Aged Categories: Primary (year 1 - 7); Lower Secondary (years 8 – 10); Upper Secondary (years 11 - 12). Both the Grand Prize for WAM Song Of The Year and the Outstanding Regional Song Of The Year Awards are selected from entries in the above categories.

3. Instrumental music may be entered into all categories.

4. If more than one song is being entered, the same entry form may be used. The same song may be entered into more than one category but a separate entry fee, lyric sheet (where appropriate) and recording must be provided.

5. To enter, send the following to: WAM SONG OF THE YEAR 2004: PO BOX 171, NORTHBRIDGE, 6865
A. COMPLETED ENTRY FORM. The entry form may be photocopied. Up to ten entries can be recorded on the same entry form. If you wish to enter more than 10 entries you must do so on a separate attached form. Be sure to indicate the category that you wish to enter the song into. By signing the form the entrant agrees to accept the rules and conditions of the contest.
B. ONE CD / AUDIO CASSETTE RECORDING PER SONG PER ENTRY. Please include song title, category, songwriter/s name, email address and telephone number on each cassette/CD and cover. Where entries are sung, they may be in any language.
C. SONG LYRICS. If there are lyrics in your song, you must provide the words to each song entered, typed or printed legibly in English (songs sung in languages other than English must have an English translation). No responsibility will be taken for illegible entries. Please include song title, category and songwriter/s name.
D. ENTRY FEE (PER ENTRY) non-refundable Adult Entries: $30 each for the first three entries, $20 each for the fourth and subsequent entries. Lower Secondary and Upper Secondary entries: $15 each for the first three entries, $10 each for the fourth and subsequent entries. Primary entries: $10 each for the first three entries and $5 each for the fourth and subsequent entries. WAM Members get first three entries for the price of one, the fourth and subsequent entries are $20 each for adults, $10 each for Upper and Lower Secondary entrants and $5 each for Primary entrants. Cheques or money orders should be made payable to the ‘West Australian Music Industry Association Inc.’

6. The deadline for entries has been extended to 5.00pm, Friday August 6, 2004. WAM holds no responsibility for entries that are late, lost, misdirected, or mailed with insufficient postage. Nor is it responsible in any way for entries that are stolen or misappropriated.

7. Five songs will be nominated for each category. The nominees will be notified by Thursday 26th August 2004.

8. Recordings and lyrics will not be returned.

9. All copyrights remain the property of the songwriter. No contestant may infringe upon existing copyrights and in signing the entry form the contestant agrees that the West Australian Music Industry Association Inc (WAM) is not held responsible for any such infringement which may occur, and will indemnify WAM against any legal action which may arise as a result of such breaches of copyright.

10. All category winners agree to have their winning entry included on a WAM Song Of The Year compilation CD, should one be produced. If the song requires re-recording, a final mix must be supplied to WAM by December 31, 2004.

11. Winners will be announced at the presentation ceremony on Thursday September 16, 2004 at The Fly By Night Club – 1 Holdsworth St, Fremantle. Presentation Ceremony Entry Fee: $15 Adults, $10 concession & under 18’s. Children under 6 are free. You can secure your tickets with your entry form.

12. Cash prizes will be awarded at the WAM Song Of The Year 2004 Presentation Ceremony. Recording Studio time will be available upon arrangement with WAM and each category studio sponsor (contact WAM for details). Studio prizes must be used before December 31 2004 UNLESS otherwise arranged with both WAM and the respective studio.

13. WAM staff and affiliated sponsors of WAM Song Of The Year are not eligible to enter the competition.

or 1800 007 962 (regional WA callers only) or email songoftheyear@wam.asn.au


What do I need to enter?
1. A completed and signed entry form
2. One recording (either audio CD or cassette) and one legible lyric sheet (preferably typed) per song, per entry
3. Payment (cheque, money order or credit card details. Please do not send cash)
For starters with you should carefully read through the Official Rules and Conditions

When is the closing date?
The deadline for entries has been extended to 5.00pm, Friday August 6, 2004.

How much does it cost to enter?
Adult entries cost $30 each for the first three entries and $20 each for subsequent entries.  Upper Secondary (years 11-12) and Lower Secondary (years 8-10) entries cost $15 each for the first three entries and $10 each for subsequent entries.  Primary (years 1-7) entries cost  $10 each for the first three entries and $5 each for subsequent entries.

Is there an age limit?
No, there is no age limit for any categories except the ASME School Aged Categories.

Can I enter lyrics only?
No, you must enter a complete composition (however instrumental songs are acceptable).

Can I enter an instrumental song?
Yes, instrumental songs are acceptable.  Please note on the cover of your recording that the song is an instrumental.

How many songs can I enter?
There is no limit to the number of songs you can enter.

Can I enter the same song in different categories?
Yes, but make sure you have a separate recording and lyric sheet for each entry.

Does my recording have to be of good quality?
The recording needs to be clear enough for the judges to assess the song but it doesn't have to be professionally recorded. The quality of the recording is not not one of the judges considerations.

Are there any limitations on the song length?
No there are no specifications for song length.

Why is there no World/ Multicultural genre category?
Unfortunately, due to a lack of demand in previous years coupled with WAM being unable to secure an Award Sponsor for the World/ Multicultural category in 2004, it was not financially viable for us to present this award.  However we encourage those that may have entered the World/ Multicultural category to instead enter the 'Roots' category, where your entry will be judged fairly and equally.  We hope we are able to reinstate the World/ Multicultural category in 2005.  

Who judges the songs?
A team of expert judging panels assess the entries according to their category.  The panels consist of active members of the local music industry.  Profiles of the judges will be available after the judging has taken place.

Why do I need to provide a lyric sheet?
Lyrics are an integral part of the song. The lyric sheet allows the judges to focus on the lyrical content of the song as well as the overall composition.

Will I get my entry returned at the end of the competition?
No, entries will not be returned after the competition.

Can I get feedback from the judges?
Yes, for $15 per entry you can have your song professionally evaluated. Look for the evaluation section on the entry form.

I live outside Western Australia, can I still enter?
No, entry is open only to Western Australian residents.

Does the entry have to be original?
Absolutely, this is a songwriting competition after all!

When will the winners be announced?

The winners will be announced at the Presentation Ceremony to be held at the Fly By Night Musician's Club (1 Holdsworth St, Fremantle) on Thursday September 16.

Where do I send my entry?
Please send entries to:
WAM Song Of The Year
PO Box 171
Northbridge 6865


You’ll need a copy of the entry form and official rules and conditions to enter. You can download this here.
*You will need Adobe Reader to download the form, if you do not have it, you can download it here for free.

If you would like a copy of the information provided on this site about categories & prize details, WAM membership, the rules & conditions and an entry form to keep for your reference you can:
a) Have the brochure mailed out to you by filling out an form.
b) download the WAM Song of the Year brochure.
Download colour brochure here or the black & white version here.
Please note that you will still need to obtain an entry form by downloading it or by requesting the hard copy brochure version from WAM.
*You will need Adobe Reader to download the form, if you do not have it, you can download it here for free.


Membership types
Associate Membership $15
+ Regular enews bulletins which detail Opportunities, WAM News and WA Industry News

Individual Membership $40
+ Regular enews bulletins which detail Opportunities, WAM News and WA Industry News
+ Voting rights at the WAM Annual General Meeting
+ Single Season Pass for The WAMis
+ 2005 Kiss My WAMi compilation CD
+ 3 entries for the price of 1 in the WAM Song of the Year Contest
+ Discounted services with related industry service providers

Concession Membership $30
+ Regular enews bulletins which detail Opportunities, WAM News and WA Industry News
+ Voting rights at the WAM Annual General Meeting
+ Single Season Pass for The WAMis
+ 2005 Kiss My WAMi compilation CD
+ 3 entries for the price of 1 in the WAM Song of the Year Contest
+ Discounted services with related industry service providers

Band Membership $80
Includes merchandise for up to 4 members, each additional member is $10 extra
+ Regular enews bulletins which detail Opportunities, WAM News and WA Industry News
+ Voting rights at the WAM Annual General Meeting
+ Up to 4 x Season Passes for The WAMis (1 per member)
+ Up to 4 x 2005 Kiss My WAMi compilation CDs (1 per member)
+ 3 entries for the price of 1 in the WAM Song of the Year Contest
+ Discounted services with related industry service providers

Icing on the Cake Membership $150
+ Regular enews bulletins which detail Opportunities, WAM News and WA Industry News
+ Voting rights at the WAM Annual General Meeting
+ Double Season Pass for The WAMis
+ 2005 Kiss My WAMi compilation CD
+ 3 entries for the price of 1 in the WAM Song of the Year Contest
+ Discounted services with related industry service providers
+ Advertisement placements to the value of $150

Business Membership $440
+ Regular enews bulletins which detail Opportunities, WAM News and WA Industry News
+ Voting rights at the WAM Annual General Meeting
+ 4 x Season Passes for The WAMis
+ 4 x 2005 Kiss My WAMi compilation CDs
+ 4 x tickets to The WAMis Awards night
+ Discounted services with related industry service providers
+ Advertisement placements to the value of $400

Keep an eye on this page – full discounts will be listed shortly and in the mean time ask if your favorite retail outlet or service provider if they offer a WAM member discount.

Plus see the news page for special monthly member offers.

Click here for a more detailed description of each membership type.

Judging for the WAM Song of the Year 2004 went through rigourous processes. Here are the guidelines that the judges adhered to:


Please enter a score next to the song in each of the three columns headed lyrics, music and commerciality. Then add the three and total in the right hand column.

The total score is out of 100. This is made up of:
- 25% lyrics
- 25% melody
- 50% commerciality/ appeal.

In some categories there may be a need to alter this for some songs, eg where instrumentals are common.

Some basic points to help with the above:

- Do the lyrics address a universal theme/ will people relate to it?
- Has a unique or fresh approach been applied?
- Is the storytelling interesting and not confusing?
- Is the title or hook memorable?
- Are there clear changes between parts?
- Are the rhymes too predictable?
- Are the lyrics too repetitive?
- Is there consistency in use of metaphors, point-of-view etc?
- Is the use of words efficient? Or wasteful?

- Is there a memorable musical hook? Is it placed appropriately?
- Does the melody suit the lyrics?
- Do the rhythm and tempo set an appropriate mood?
- Are there effective, clear changes between parts?
- Does the song have a suitable structure?

Does the song have commercial potential and general appeal? Its worth reflecting upon the fact that a song may not necessarily score highly on lyrics and melody, but could have strong commercial potential. This is obvious when listening to commercial radio every day.
It’s also worth noting that this competition is targeted towards offering career opportunities for songwriters. Commercial potential, within the context of the category being judged (ie a jazz song should appeal in a jazz context, not necessarily mainstream radio etc) , is therefore a crucial component of the winning entries.

Thank you for volunteering your time to assist with WAM Song of the Year judging!

Other Points

Conflict of Interest
Judges should be aware that they may hear an entry where their opinion may be compromised due to a conflict of interest. Judges are informed that a conflict of interest exists in the case that they would personally benefit should the entry in question win the category or, conversely if they would personally benefit should the song score badly. This extends to benefit derived by immediate family. Judges are asked to inform the panel and absolve from judging that particular entry.

Recording Quality
The recording quality/ production of an entry is irrelevant. Of course, the recording must at least be of sufficiaent quality that the elements of the song are audibly discernible.

Variations to the Guidelines
In each category a discussion was held with the judging panel prior to the commencement of judging. In the cases below it was deemed that there was a variation required to the judging criteria.

Jazz Category
As a significant number of Jazz entries were instrumental, it was agreed that the 25% score usually allocated to lyrics would be assessed on the basis of harmonic and rhythmic structure, for instrumental tracks only. Lyric based entries were assessed as per the standard judging criteria.

Electronic/ Dance Category
It was agreed that the lyric criteria would not be assessed, with a 50% score therefore allocated to a technical assessment of the music. Where there was significant lyric content, this was simply incorporated into the scoring of this 50%.

Instrumentals (all categories)
In general instrumentals received a score based on 50% or the overall score for the music content.


Judging for the 16 separate categories was carried out by independent panels of industry experts, with 49 judges donating their time in 14 separate panels over a three week period.

Rob Agostini
My roles includes that of producer, engineer, songwriter and programmer where I tend to work songs hard prior to recording.  Rather than simply recording an artist, I like assisting them in choosing their best material and amplifying the commercial aspects of a song. I regularly freelance to other studios around Australia and travel interstate to collaborate with artists.  

Jeremy Allom

Connie Andersen

Connie has been a professional singer, songwriter and musician since 1983 and has performed as the lead singer in several bands, trios and duos in Perth. More recently Connie has established independent record label Kismana Music, is teaching, and has signed to Goldwax Records, Atlanta.

Ivan B

Jeff Baker

I have always been interested in music and live in Bridgetown where there are many talented people. I enjoy playing percussion. I am also an artist who loves to paint. Music is a very big part of my life and enjoy meeting and mixing with many talented artists and musicans.

Pauline Baker
Pauline has been the music programmer for “Blues at Bridgetown” festival for the last three years. She has also been lucky enough to be a judge for the Australian Blues Awards for the last few years. She loves all types of music but has a passion for Blues.

Clint Bracknell

Clint Bracknell is a multi-genre songwriter who has performed all over Western Australia and also internationally. Clint is a Sweat Shoppe Girls member and previously fronted WA band Longbo Tom.

Grant Burns

Vicki Caulfield

Salli-Ann Craik

Salli-Ann has worked as a producer at The Australian Christian Music Seminar - Cooma and has been involved in production for Blackstump Christian Arts Festival, Awakenings and more recently Saltbush Youth Festival (Perth). In 2000, Salli-Ann moved to Perth to take up a position as Worship and Creative Arts director at Claremont Baptist Church. Whilst in Perth she has produced the Higher Ground Worship and Creative Arts Seminar.

Alexander Cullen

Marcia Czerniak.
Marcia Czerniak recently graduated from Murdoch Uni with a communications and journalism degree and conducts interviews with local musicians and industry figures for the WAM website.

Antonella De Gregoriis

Terry Dewar

Terry is founder and promoter for the Australian country music Icons. An event which tours WA with guest artists and promotes amateur country musicians from WA. Terry is an associate member of the Australian Country Music Association of Australia (Tamworth) and also hold music producers credentials.

Steve Drew

Matt Giles
Matt Giles writes about local music as deputy editor of Grok Magazine, and WA reporter for theprogram.net.au(.) Soon he will co-launch his own magazine and record label, and buy a new pair of shoes.

Raelene Gill
Raelene fronts Cartel Music Management: focusing on regional touring, promotions, events and artist management including Bordello, Imprint, and Sleeper X. In addition to being Metior’s original music ‘Street-Stalker’ Raelene is writing her PhD on the anti-war music of Zack de la Rocha and the Beastie Boys.

Bob Gordon

David Hardie
David is currently WA Manager for Ausmusic, a nationally based Vocational Education and Training Providor delivering VET music program in schools and other for bodies. Classically trained, he is active and a conductor, percussionist and teacher, while his drum kit gathers dust in the corner.

Peter Kenyon
Peter is Chair of the Management Board of JAZZWA. He is a member of the Perth Jazz Society and is a long-time radio presenter of jazz. Peter started in the 1970s and is most recently at KCR 102.5FM Perth where he presents ‘Out of the Cool’ on Wednesdays, 6pm to 8pm. Peter is the Chair of the WA Advisory Board of the ‘Big Issue’ and a member of its national Board.

Brett Ladhams
Like most, my involvement in the music industry stemmed from a love of local music, which opened the door in late 2000 to music press, initially with Hype Magazine, into ZebraHype, now X-Press. In between there’s been a staff writing position with Grok magazine and regular contributions to Popstarzine, Pelican and Metior. Brief management of El horizonte in 2002 led to current management of Head Filled Attraction, plus the promotion of several live shows per year and judging involvement with NCBC, NBT and WAM competitions over the past few years.

Tina Louise

Brett Mabury
Brett recently completed a Bachelor of Music (Composition and Arranging) with First Class Honours at WAAPA. During his studies he received the ‘Jazz Society Encouragement Award’ (2000), the ‘Melville Toyota Scholarship’ (2003) and an ECU scholarship (2004) for two years study towards his Masters. He has arranged and composed for a variety of settings, including the opening of the Perth Convention Exhibition Centre (2004), the West Australian Youth Jazz Orchestra (2002-2003), and the West Australian Youth Orchestra (2002).

Roy Martinez

Michaela Mason
For the past two years, Michaela (a law graduate from UWA) has worked for Scope Music mainly in the areas of artist management, tour promotion together with coordinating media and promotional campaigns for both the company and its artists.

Paul McArthy

Ronan McGinniss

Initially a performer, Ronan performed classical music at various festivals both in Australia and overseas. Ronan progressed to contemporary music and performed in numerous bands before birthing ‘The Wires’ in 2000. The Wires performed in the Perth music scene, gained interstate supports, and played at the Perth leg of the Big Day Out in 2003. Now focussing on the management side of the Christian music industry, Ronan has completed a Bachelor of Arts Management degree at the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts.

Josie Mitchell

Dan Moore
Dan has worked on local radio station RTR as part of Full Frequency for a number of years. Dan also DJs regularly as part of the Fat Fluid crew.

Arthur Muhl

Mike Narrier
Drive time announcer at Perth's only full-time country music station 100.9fm, Mike likes to keep up to date with what is happening in the country music scene whether it be local, national or international. He also has a bad habit of writing about himself in the third person.

Rob Oats

Chris O'Halloran

David Paddon

Briony Paternoster

Renae Powell
Renae studied the Music Industry Skills course at the Leederville TAFE for two years, and has been volunteering at WAM since April 2003. Renae also write for X-Press and Groove Magazine.

Rosalie Powers

Annika Priest

Matthew Salleo

Matt Salleo of KCD (label/management) has been managing bands since the ripe old age of 16. Currently managing Dyslexic Fish, running a label and providing digital media solutions to bands like The Butterfly Effect and Full Scale.

Steve Sheldon
Steve Sheldon works for BASE (British & Australian Sound Experience) a not for profit organisation working with local bands and DJ's to: deliver free music workshops to children in primary schools. foster musical exchanges through tours to the UK and India. offer local music to a wider audience through base.tv.

Duane Smith
Duane Smith has been involved with the Western Australian music scene for over 18 years. He has been singer/guitarist/songwriter with seminal Perth Power Pop band "The Chevelles" for over 14 years and has created music for a variety of productions in theatre, film and TV both in WA and overseas. Duane also ran the seminal live music venue "Amplifier" for over 4 years and currently works for APRA as Writer Service Representative in WA.

Glenn Thomas
Glenn Thomas has been involved in Community Radio for the last 22yrs and is currently working as a music presenter on RTR FM. He has a close interest in local music, particularly alternative country.

Kathleen Toomath
Kathleen Toomath holds a Certificate IV in Music and, in her current position at Abmusic, is responsible for the management and development of indigenous artists and events.

Phil Warburton
Phil has been program co-ordinater at Central Tafe's Music Industry Training course since 1996. He’s been involved in the local music industry, as a bass player, since the original  /punk /new wave days of the late seventies, through the suburban covers beer barns of the eighties and into the corporate show band circuit of the nineties.

Ian Warrilow
After 15 years of managing various commercial industry projects Ian co-founded Scope Music in July 1999 to assist in the area of managing, recording, teaching, producing and touring Christian/Gospel artists; local WA artists with exclusive association are: the jive express, Kirste and Drew Griffith.

Aarom Wilson
Aarom Wilson teaches radio at Murdoch University and is the Editor of the magazine, Metior. He presents various radio programs on RTRfm and Radio Fremantle, has organised musical events and festivals and written for a number of publications.

Graham Wood

Graham has been a professional pianist, arranger and composer since 1990. Graham completed the Bachelor of Music (Jazz) course at WAAPA in 1992. After completing his degree, he was awarded and ARTSWA grant to study Jazz piano in New York. After completing a graduate diploma in Education and a Masters of Music Education (Prelim) he is now completing his PhD studies at the University of Western Australia. Graham was appointed Jazz piano lecturer at WAAPA in 2001 and Course coordinator for Jazz studies in 2004.

Ilan Zagoria
Ilan grew up in Zimbabwe, arriving in Perth in 1988 where he has continued playing African style guitar with African Music Congress, the Ziggy Bey Jan Group and Afrique Acoustic.


1247 entries and 75 shortlisted nominees after the fact, WAM proudly announced to the world the winners of WAM Song Of The Year 2003 in 15 genre categories, as well as the inaugural Grand Prize winner for WAM Song Of The Year 2003, Andrew Horabin.

Winners each received $1,000 (Children & Youth winners received $500) and a day1s recording time at a top Perth studio.  The Grand Prize winner received the opportunity to have a promotional single recorded, pressed and released among other select opportunities.


Grand Prize
WAM Song Of The Year 2003:
Georgie Boy    Andrew Horabin    (Leederville)

Individual Category Winners

Asbestos Fibro     ADM Powell     (Perth)

Easy Listening Pop/ R'n'B:
Back 2 those Timez    Chanelle    (Noranda)

Electronic/Hip Hop:
Boy X Girl Y    Johnson/ Vernie    (Brentwood)

Hard Rock/ Metal/ Punk:
Reprisal    Simon Pilkington/ Aaron Smith    (Dianella)

Indi Pop/ Rock:
Andy Warhol    Little Birdy    (Yokine)

Jazz/ Funk:
That Hurt    Myles Wright    (Mosman Park)

Sheba Lane    Lynn Hazelton    (Hamilton Hill)

Soundtrack/ Filmscore/ Experimental:
Green Lantern    Johannes Luebbers    (Mt Lawley)

World/ Multicultural:
Day Oh    Eloy Cardenas    (Broome)

Raining On Djilba    George Walley    (Mandurah)

Something More    Wesley Fuller     (Southlake)

On My Own    Ryan Blair/ Justin Flamer    (East Victoria Park)

Walking Over Sea    Sam & Ben Dunn    (Fremantle)

Georgie Boy    Andrew Horabin    (Leederville)

Songs For Kids:
Pirlpirltji    L Hazelton/ A Ovi/ S Stanford    (Hamilton Hill/ Kimberley)

WAM gratefully acknowledges the assistance of the State Government of Western Australia through ArtsWA.

WAM Song Of The Year is one of WAM's 2 major annual events. From humble beginnings in 1989, the song contest has grown to become WA’s, and one of Australia's, premier songwriting contests. Boasting a total of over $30,000 in cash and prizes, with a bunch of new categories and a fresh outlook, 2003 was the beginning of a new phase for WAM Song Of The Year. 2004 continues that theme with many new features, including the all new Outstanding Regional Song Of The Year Award.

'It was very exciting for us to win an award for 'I Should Of Known' because that was the first song we all contributed ideas to. We had only been around a short time when the award was announced, but it was a real confidence boost for all of us. It really helped having that extra $1000 to get us on our feet and helped with being able to tour with 'real gear'” Katy Steele - Little Birdy, Indie Pop/Rock winner 2003, now signed to Eleven through Virgin/ EMI.

"Winning the WAM Song Of The Year was a huge boost in so many ways. The prizes that came with the award were extremely useful; the publicity helped immensely in getting my songs out there (and the publicity must have been good because loads of people seemed to know about it); and it was great encouragement. So I'd say to anyone who's thinking of entering: Do it!..And good luck!“ Andrew Horabin, Grand Prize Winner 2003.


WAM, the West Australian Music Industry Association Inc., exists to develop the contemporary music industry. WAM is non profit membership based association and it's activities encompass: Access, Education & Information services; Advocacy & Policy; Events such as The WAMis & WAM Song Of The Year; Indigenous Programs; plus Support for Regional WA as well as entry into Interstate and International markets. WAM is the peak representative body for contemporary music in WA.

Contact WAM:
PO Box 171
Northbridge WA 6865
Phone: 08 9227 7962
Freecall: 1800 007 962 (WA regional callers only)
Fax: 08 9328 7711
E-mail: songoftheyear@wam.asn.au