The Tiny Desk Contest, NPR Music's annual search for the best undiscovered musicians, is back for its 10th year and open for submissions. The winner will perform their own Tiny Desk, headline a 10-city national tour, and – for the first time – be mentored by a music industry professional.
Submit artists' entries HERE.
Since the debut of the Tiny Desk Contest in 2014, more than 40,000 musicians from across all 50 states have submitted their videos in the hopes of being chosen to perform as part of NPR Music's signature music discovery series. On this special milestone for the contest, NPR is again calling for unsigned musicians to submit their entries at NPR.org/tinydeskcontest starting today, January 23, 2024, at 10 a.m. ET, until Wednesday, February 21, 2024, at 11:59 p.m. ET.
Read the complete entry rules here.
This year's 15 Tiny Desk judges will feature NPR Music staff, Member station experts, musicians, and, for the first time, industry professionals:
- Bobby Carter, Tiny Desk series producer
- Robin Hilton, All Songs Considered host
- Stas THEE Boss, KEXP host
- Novena Carmel, Morning Becomes Eclectic host on KCRW
- Amelia Mason, WBUR music critic
- Neffy, former Tiny Desk Contest winner
- Bobby Wooten, musician and producer
- Durand Bernarr, singer and actor
- MUNA, pop band
- Julien Baker, songwriter and guitarist in boygenius
- NIKI, Indonesian pop star
- Brendan O'Connell, music manager at Ten Atoms
- Keanna Faircloth, jazz podcast host
- Nabil Ayers, president of Beggars Group U.S.
- Loren Medina, owner of Guerrera Marketing & PR
"I've never been more excited for the Tiny Desk Contest! Emerging artists from around the country have consistently delivered performances that have blown us away for 9 years straight. In our 10th year, I'm most excited about what we, the Tiny Desk team have the opportunity to do for the winner. We're expanding our support by inviting industry experts into the process, a huge tour, plus a mentorship to help them on their new journey in the music industry! Year ten is bigger and better!" said Carter.
The 2024 Contest winner will perform at the iconic Tiny Desk, be paired with an industry mentor, appear on NPR's All Things Considered, and be the featured act of the Tiny Desk Contest On The Road Tour presented by NPR Music and NPR Member stations. The national tour will include stops in D.C., New Orleans, Seattle, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, New York, Austin, Chicago, Atlanta and Petaluma, Calif.
Though there can only be one grand prize winner each year, many other artists who submit will be chosen to appear on NPR Music's social media accounts and YouTube channel, NPR's broadcast news magazines, and in the Tiny Desk Contest newsletter. For the first time in the Contest's history, Tiny Desk fans will also be able to vote for their favorite video among the 40 Top Shelf features. Additionally, Contest judges will feature outstanding entries in NPR Music's Tiny Desk Contest Top Shelf livestream series on YouTube. Stay tuned for more information later this spring.
Over the last decade, past performers and winners of the Tiny Desk Contest have seen tremendous success on bigger stages. The 2017 winner Tank and the Bangas was nominated for a third Grammy Award last year and performed at the Miss Universe pageant. The 2019 winner, Quinn Christopherson, released a new song about climate change with superstar cellist Yo-Yo Ma and drag artist Pattie Gonia. 2021 winner Alisa Amador is currently on tour with the band Couch, and has finished recording an album that will be released via Thirty Tigers in 2024; last year's winner, Little Moon, will play Treefort Fest in Boise in March and Kilby Block Party in Salt Lake City in May.
NPR Music welcomes music from all genres and encourages entrants from previous years to submit new material. To enter the Contest, unsigned musicians must be 18 years old and live in the United States, the District of Columbia, the U.S. Virgin Islands, or Puerto Rico. The artist must play one original song at a desk, upload a video of the performance to YouTube, and submit a completed entry form at NPR.org/tinydeskcontest.