An elitist’s guide to the Shore 104FM Sounds of Summer Song Search

An elitist's guide to the Shore 104FM Sounds of Summer Song Search.

Credit: Flickr / Jsome1

Vancouver radio station launches Sounds of Summer Song Search, narrowing down the city’s acoustic songsters to 10 finalists.


Local blogger and storyteller Elianna Lev trims that down to three

Full disclaimer: I am not the Shore 104FM’s target demographic. According to Patrick Zulinov, the station’s program and music director, their market is people in their 30s and 40s who prefer an “earthier vibe.” I don’t really fit that description.

I was the girl in Grade 5 who scoffed at my fellow classmates listening to NKOTB on their Walkmens while I opted for Leonard Cohen. When I was 20, I spent a summer in New York, where nearly every night I was out listening to John Zorn or Marc Ribot. I’ve always been a musical elitist.

But no matter. I am up for a challenge. I was asked to pick some standout songs from the top 10 finalists of the Shore 104FM Sounds of Summer Song Search, so I buried my critical cynicism for an hour and did my best.

A bit of background on the contest. Participants from across BC were asked to submit an original acoustic song in audio format along with a YouTube clip. That way, judges could get a sense of what the performer was like live, which was equally as important as the strength of the song. Zulinov also said the type of song they were looking for shouldn’t have “too much guitar wanking.”

Narrowing the entries to 20, the judges include Shaun Verreault (Wide Mouth Mason), Erin Cebula (ET Canada/Global), Erik Hoffman (Live Nation), Don McLeod (S.A.S.S.), Province entertainment writer Stuart Derdeyn, 54-40 guitarist Dave Genn and several Shore FM team members. The next step was to trim 20 down to 10, the results of which were announced on July 5, 2010.

Nettwerk Music Group co-founder Terry McBride and talent gurus Bruce Allen and Sam Feldman will be narrowing down the top 10 to a winner. The 10 finalists will be featured on-air everyday for the next four weeks at 6:45/11:45 a.m. and 6:45/11:45 p.m. And listeners can chime in on the website with their favourites until the winner is announced on July 31 during the Celebration of Light, where Shore will have a SHOREfest stage in English Bay.

Winner of the Shore 104 FM Sounds of Summer Song Search receives studio time at Nimbus, a four-song EP, $5,000 in gift certificates from Tom Lee Music, EPK videoby Insider Films, enrollment in Rock Enroll, a crash course in the music business by veteran Dave Chesney and a chance to perform at the Burnaby Roots and Blues Festival in August.

So here are a musical elitist’s top three standouts of the Top 10 finalists of Shore 104FM Sounds of Summer Song Search. Check out to find the full list of finalists and vote for your favourite to win. And don’t be shy to chime in below.


“Lie to You, ” Lindsay May

Lindsay May, Sounds of Summer Song SearchA simple and sad love song about a crappy relationship and its lack of communication. Tell me about it, Lindsay May. The best part is the wee ting of mandolin at the end. Otherwise, it’s pretty striped down and heartfelt.

Listen to “Lie to You” >>>


“Brown Stone Road,” Headwater

Headwater, Sounds of Summer Song SearchThis is a blue-grassy bite-sized morsel of Canadiana. Sounds like what a campfire sing-along should sound like at its best. You really can’t go wrong with harmonies and banjo.

Listen to “Brown Stone Road” >>>


“Big Sore Heart,” Robert Wilson

Robert Wilson, Sounds of Summer Song SearchThis is an easy listener’s dream. The epitome of adult contemporary. Inoffensive. Dreamy. Simple. Powerfully minimal.

Listen to “Big Sore Heart” >>>



Elianna Lev

Elianna Lev is a writer, broadcaster, media consultant and storyteller. She lives in Vancouver. | | Twitter