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The Atlanta Blues Society Press Release

What: 2016 Atlanta Blues Challenge

When: Sunday, August 21, 2016, 1 pm – 8:30pm

Where: Hard Rock Cafe, Atlanta, GA

The Atlanta Blues Challenge is the Atlanta Blues Society’s competition to select our representatives for the International Blues Challenge in Memphis, TN.  The Atlanta Blues Challenge will be held on Sunday August 21, 2016 at the Hard Rock Cafe, 215 Peachtree St NE, Atlanta, GA 30303, 404-688-7625 in downtown Atlanta.  We will be starting at 1 pm and will end about 8:30pm.   To help offset the costs of the challenge we will be charging $10 for ABS members and $15 for non-members at the door.

Musicians, time is of the essence to get into the challenge.  We may need to limit the number of entrants we accept due to time constraints, so being the first to apply will be very important to ensure your entry.  We will be accepting applications beginning immediately for 3 categories, Band, Solo/Duo and Youth.   The deadline for submitting applications is midnight August 1, 2016. The first 3 entries in the Youth, the first 4 entries for Solo/Duo ,  and the first 5 entries for the Band category will automatically be in the challenge (3-4-5) for a total of 12 slots.  A waiting list will be made for any other entries and if a category does fill up by the deadline other acts may take those slots in the order they entered. The winners in each category will represent The Atlanta Blues Society at the Blues Foundation’s International Blues Challenge (IBC) in Memphis, TN which will take place January 31-Feb 4, 2017.   Winners must finance their own trip to Memphis and fund raisers are encouraged.  All members in the act for the Youth category must be under 21 as of the IBC dates.  The Youth winners will be featured in the Youth Showcase (not a competition) in Memphis on Friday Feb 3, 2017. Under 21’s may compete in the Band & Solo/Duo categories.

Entrance fees for the Challenge have been significantly reduced from past years and you can get a discount by being a Musician Sponsor of the ABS.  The entrance fees for this year’s Atlanta Blues Challenge are as follows:

•          Band Act:  $25 for Musician Sponsor, $100 for non-musician sponsor

•          Solo/Duo: $20 for Musician Sponsor, $75 for Non-musician sponsor

•          Youth Act:  $25 for Musician Sponsor, $100 for non-musician sponsor

Musician sponsorship is $50 a year.  To see sponsorship benefits and to apply to become a musician sponsor contact us for a sponsorship form or go to our website at

Prize money for each winning act is as follows:

•          Band – $750

•          Solo/Duo – $300

•          Youth – $400

•          People’s Choice – $250

Winner of People’s Choice act will be determined by voting of the paying patrons at the event.  The Prize winners will be invited to play at the Atlanta Blues Society’s Holiday party in December, where the prize money will be awarded along with any tips raised at the party.  Winning acts are encouraged to have at least one other fundraising show.   In addition to the prize money, the Atlanta Blues Society has made arrangements with our sponsor; Midnight Circus Productions, to provide a studio Master recording that can be used to produce CD’s which can be sold before, during and after the Memphis event.  Midnight Circus will also provide high quality videos of the Hard Rock performances.

For questions and applications to enter the Atlanta Blues Challenge contact us at    For further updates go to the following ABS website page at  The competition will be judged by a non-partial group of judges who are not associated with the Atlanta Blues Society or any of the acts competing.  The ABS follows the same rules and scoring criteria as the International Blues Challenge (IBC).  All acts will be expected to know and follow all rules as specified by the Blues Foundation for the IBC.  Please read all about it on the Blues Foundation site at


I am the author of a number of books, including Southern Crossroads: Georgia Blues, T;Ain't Nobody's Business If I Do, about blues women, The Irish Slaves, a non-fiction work about Irish History, and Haunted Marietta, a nook from the History Press about my hometown of Marietta, GA and its ghosts. I am a member and sponsor of The Atlanta Blues Society.

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