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Contest Winner (2015)


To win a contest
You've got to be the very best
You've gotta take it all the way to the top of the mountain--
~Tyler James Cook, "Contest Winner"

From the "Album Notes" from CD Baby:

A legend in his own mind, Cook combines the false bravado and delusions of grandeur of Jack Black with the gospel-drenched vocal styling of Meat Loaf. Fan favorites "Hipster Girl Next Door" and "Contest Winner" round out his solo debut collection of six tasty tunes, ranging stylistically from Billy Joel-esque piano-fueled pop-rock and Elton John-inspired power ballads to synth-heavy odes to his own songwriting prowess.

Cook has been writing, composing, and arranging music for over a decade, but delved into solo songwriting in 2012, making a minor (albeit drenching) splash on the local open mic circuit in the Pee Dee region of his beloved South Carolina with his cheeky lyrics and mash-ups of 80s power ballads. Cook entered this EP's title track, "Contest Winner," in the inaugural 2012 Artsville Songwriting Contest in Hartsville, South Carolina, where the song won the People's Choice Prize. Over the next two years, he would go on to write a number of other songs, including the six tracks that appear here.

In March 2014, Cook began recording his original material with Ken "Dakota" Jones of Southern Harmony Studios in Florence, South Carolina. The result was six tracks featuring Cook's improbable falsetto vocal harmonies, Neanderthalic piano playing, and some Asia-esque synthesizer work.

Each of these tracks represent Cook's unusual, slice-of-life perspective on the world, derailed romance, and hipsters. Submitted for your approval: Tyler James Cook's Contest Winner EP.