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UM News
January 07, 2013


This spring, one undiscovered guitarist will get the chance to play on stage with legendary guitarist Eric Clapton, and University of Montana Entertainment Management students will help with the promotion to find that person.

UM students will be the first to announce via Facebook, Twitter and other social-media outlets the 2013 Play Crossroads contest, a global search for the next best undiscovered guitarist. The winner will have the chance to perform on stage April 12-13 at Eric Clapton’s Crossroads Guitar Festival, which is sponsored by Chase and draws in thousands of fans from around the world to witness performances from musicians such as John Mayer, Sheryl Crow, Steve Winwood, ZZ Top and many more.

Ernie Ball, the legendary guitar string company, will be partnering with Guitar Center, Guitar World, and to conduct the Play Crossroads contest, which kicked off Jan. 7.

UM Entertainment Management Director Scott Douglas will work with students to promote the Play Crossroads contest. Under Douglas’ direction, students also will help publicize and promote Clapton’s Crossroads Guitar Festival 2013, which is a benefit for Crossroads Centre Antigua, a chemical-dependency treatment center founded by Clapton.

The project opportunity was brought to the UM Entertainment Management program by Maria Brunner, a core instructor with the program.

Beginning Jan. 7, unsigned musicians are invited to enter the Play Crossroads contest for free at by completing a short informational profile and uploading one MP3. Entrants are encouraged to use the promotional toolkit provided on each band/artist profile, to promote their entry all over the Web and drive traffic to their profile.

The prize pack for the winning artist includes:

  • performance slot on the stage of the 2013 Eric Clapton Crossroads Guitar Festival at Madison Square Garden,
  • Ernie Ball string package and endorsement,
  • Ernie Ball Music Man guitar endorsement, and
  • Guitar Player magazine feature

For more information about the contest, go to





Contact: Shannon Furniss, communications director, UM School of Business Administration, 406-243-2782,