Duluth Dylan Fest and Song From the North Country Announce Partnership and Songwriting Contest

March 8, 2021

Duluth, MN. Duluth Dylan Fest and Song From the North Country will commemorate Bob Dylan’s 80th birthday this year by partnering to create a uniquely local, collaboratively-produced music video.

Now in its 11th year, Duluth Dylan Fest will run May 22-30, with a mainly virtual event featuring some in-person opportunities following CDC safe social distancing guidelines.

A highlight of the annual, weeklong festival is the songwriter contest. “We are excited about the new twist on the songwriter contest this year,” said committee member Mark Poirier. “The pandemic has inspired our committee to think creatively and provide new ways to celebrate Bob Dylan and our region’s rich music environment.” This year the winning song will be made into a music video produced by Song From the North Country’s talented group of local and regional musicians. There will be cash prizes for the first, second, and third place winners, with an opportunity for those winners to perform during the fest.

Song From the North Country began making socially-distanced videos of original, regional music last year as a response to the pandemic and a way for area musicians to connect with one another and their followers. Their videos have drawn isolated musicians into closer community and have been viewed around the world as postcards from home by those who love our region.

In addition to the Duluth Dylan Fest’s Song From the North Country Songwriting Contest, the festival will feature a poetry contest, lecture, tour, and a number of musical events. The Duluth Dylan Fest is made possible by a grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund, along other local donors and sponsors. 

Interested songwriters will need to submit an original song. To learn more about the Duluth Dylan Fest’s Song From the North Country Songwriter Contest guidelines, please visit the Duluth Dylan Fest Facebook page or visit Song From the North Country’s website at songfromthenorthcountry.org/contest. The deadline for submitting an original song is April 2nd at 11:59 p.m. and space is limited to 30 contestants.

Contact Zane Bail for more information about the Duluth Dylan Fest and its 2021 Songwriting Contest: duluthdylanfest@gmail.com.

Contact Timothy Soden-Groves for information about Song From the North Country and its upcoming collaborative video project: mothygroves@gmail.com.


About the Duluth Dylan Fest:
The Duluth Dylan Fest’s mission is to celebrate the spirit of artistic freedom, intellectual honesty and integrity of Duluth’s native son, Bob Dylan. The Fest is dedicated to showcasing Duluth’s vibrant art scene. The group of volunteers is committed to providing creative events that tap the talents of artists, poets, and musicians in Duluth and the surrounding region.


About Song From the North Country:
Since April 2020, Song From the North Country has served local and regional musicians’ need to be in collaborative musical relationships, while also bringing musicians and followers together through music. Against the isolation of the pandemic, music has become a more tangible bridge between us than ever before. Music is where we make personal connections, realize a common identity in our love for the North Country, and grow our love for one another. Song From the North Country restores a little bit of music and community to us all.


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