Play it Strange is the foundation encouraging school aged kids to write songs and develop as musicians and is still going strong in its thirteenth year. Founder Mike Chunn says the foundation was built to get song writing into the mainstream education system.
“What we are doing was modeled on college sport. I went to see the guy that runs it back in 2003, and I asked what the background to college sport was. He said to have as many people playing as want to, might want to or will want to once they’ve tried it. That’s exactly what we’ve tried to do with song writing and Play It Strange.”
Kimbra, Graham Candy, Campbell and so many more talented artists have had their beginnings through the Play It Strange annual song writing competition and this year promises even more talent.
“They ‘re much more sophisticated than they used to be. There's a lot more sophisticated arranging which is great to see but one of the strong things I’m noticing this year is a great improvement in lyrics. I push play on all 300 or so songs each year, so I have a pretty good idea of what they’re all thinking out there”
Each year Mike Chunn assembles a team and finds the best songs written and recorded by high school students and compiles them together for all of us to enjoy and you can find the 53 best of 2016 here.