L2F Songwriting Competition

Aims of the 2020 Songwriting Challenge

Whilst we knew the cancellation of this year’s festival meant that we could not hold our annual song writing competition, we also felt that we couldn’t give up on our commitment to encouraging and promoting new song writing. So, in September we invited people to send us their self-penned songs created in and around, because or despite of, these troubled times. The remit (as it would have been for the competition) identified that we were not primarily looking for polished performance, but rather for songwriting of interest. Whether you popped into Abbey Road or (like some) sang something into your mobile phone, we wanted to hear it, and, if possible, share it with visitors to our website.

We had a really good response, from a wide age range (13 – 70+ years) of entrants. Some sent links to straight recordings of songs; others ventured into video. Some identified themselves as first time writers; other entries came from experienced composers and performers. Often the songs reflected on aspects of what the composer had seen happening or experienced over the year, and ranged from the personal, through the observational, to the socio-political. As such all songs are representative of the writer’s views and not of the Challenge organisers. However, we are proud to be able to offer you links to the performances so that you can judge for yourselves, and admire some of the creative talent that’s out there, much of it on your doorsteps!

So please browse our musical library of new and eclectic compositions.  Hear a track you like?  Tell other people about it.  Feel inspired to write something yourself?  Then pick up your guitar, sit yourself down at the keyboard and start composing for the L2F Lichfield Festival of Folk Songwriting Competition 2021, which will return for our Festival next year.


Please note songs are listed alphabetically, not by genre or any other rating system. The styles and approaches are wide ranging, so go on – give them a listen and see what you think by following the links below:

Jessica Hackett – A Little Faith

Holy Rolfe – Alive

Maria Gray – Basket Full of Happiness

Graham Collins – Eat Sleep Repeat

Grace Tower – Fairground Ride

Vivien Richardson – Getting By

Corrie Shelley – Ghost Light

Lisa Webb – Glimpse of You

Allen Smith – In This Madness

Pauline Vallance / Rakesh Bhanot – It Is What It Is

Rhysian Gault / Anji Hollinshead-Bland – Little Touches

Lawrence Hoy – Living In The Parlour

Ella Tennant – Lock Down Love

Arnie Rainbow – Madagascar

James Laurie – Medicine

Roger Hilliard – Nerja Nights

Stephen Ling – Out Of Lockdown

Lilah Boxhall/ Hayley Wyatt – Quarantine Summer

Gareth Twitchett – Song For Covid

Neil Williams – Star of The Screen

Alackofgravitas – Sue’s Lobster

Girardo Sgroi – The P{resident and The Nomad (sic)

Jackson Williams – The Spark Between You and I

Steve Nesbitt – Til the Hard Times are Gone

Ian Stephenson – We Will Stand Tall

Paul Trevor – Your Time Will Come (Warning: contains strong language)

L2F Songwriting Competition – 2019 Winner

In previous years, the L2F Lichfield Festival of Folk has hosted a Songwriting Competition, which has attracted many high-quality entries from both established and developing songwriters.  In 2018, the winner was Mark White, with his song In John’s Kitchen; last year, in 2019, the winner was Chris Fox, with his composition We Sing Hooray, which he performed for the Festival audience.  To listen to Chris performing his winning song at the Great Knight Folk Club in Northampton, click here.