triple j has reported that New Zealand singer/songwriter pop sensation Kimbra has walked away with the top prize from this year’s International Songwriting Competition for her song Cameo Lover.
On Kimbra’s official Twitter page, the solo artist expressed her gratitude via the following tweets:
“Wow! Just found out I won Grand Prize of the International Songwriting Competition for 2012! So stoked!”
“Wow, & favourites @JanelleMonae, @TheBasementJaxx & @tomwaits were judges this year! Super honoured to have won. x”
According to Stuff Entertainment, the jury of the Nashville-based award released the following statement on their decision:
“Even at such a young age, Kimbra already possesses the maturity and musical sophistication of the mavericks she is so often compared to – from vocal legends Nina Simone and Jeff Buckley, to radicals the likes of Prince, and contemporary artists such as Björk and Janelle Monaé.”
“With her distinctive vocals and hook-laden creative songwriting, Kimbra is rapidly establishing herself as a significant talent and a fresh and exciting new voice on the international music scene.”
The director and founder of the International Songwriting Competition Candace Avery added, “We first became aware of Kimbra in 2010 when she entered ISC and won First Place in the Pop/Top 40 category with her song Settle Down. At that time we knew she was one of those artists who had it. As a songwriter, her eclectic and somewhat quirky songwriting made her stand out. As an artist, she brings her songs to life with her unique vocal styling and compelling stage presence. We are proud to have her as our 2011 Grand Prize winner.”
Kimbra’s victory marks the third time a New Zealander has won the award, with Moana Maniapoto and Gin Wigmore winning the competition in 2003 and 2004 respectively.
Overall a dozen Australian musical acts either won or were in contention for awards in various categories, including The Living End, Jebediah and Eskimo Joe.
For winning the top prize, Kimbra reportedly walks away with $25,000 cash (US) and will also receive a further $25,000 in merchandise and services.
Watch: Kimbra – Cameo Lover