Write & record a killer song
You can write it by yourself, with a mate or in a song wrting partnership. You can record at home with your own gear or in a local studio. The competition is about great songs not recordings.



Upload your song
Upload your song to Dropbox or Google Drive. If you’ve never uploaded to Dropbox or Google Drive we’ve got a handy “how to guide” that you can read by clicking the button below.



Submit & share!
From 1 August until 29 September you can enter your song by filling out the form on this page. You’ll get an email confirming your entry and another on 1 October with details on how you can start getting votes!




Unsigned artists from The Hunter and Lake Macquarie.

You can also enter as a song writing partnership. In this competition we have limited song writing partnerships to a maximum of 5 people.

An unsigned artist is a musician or musical group not under a contract with a record label. Individuals or partnerships that self-publish their own material are also considered unsigned in this competition. If you’re entering as part of a partnership, all members must be unsigned artists.


The simple answer is, an original unreleased song.

You can write it by yourself or with some mates. In this competition we have limited song writing partnerships to a maximum of 5 people. If you’re using samples, you must own the rights to all audio used in your entry. No exceptions.

You can record the song anyway you like. Record at home with your own gear or in a local studio. The competition is about great songs, it’s not about instrumentation or produced recordings.

We’ve put together a list of great articles about recording at home and in a local studio. You can find them here.


Tip Jar 2017 will be excepting entries from 1 August 2017 until 29 September 2017.

Public voting will begin 1 October 2017 and be live until 19 October. The industry prize winner will also be selected during October 2017.

A “grand final” will be held at The Cambridge Hotel on a date to be scheduled in November. Winners of both the public vote and the industry prize will be announced during this event.


Entries have now closed!


How to Enter

  1. CLOSING DATE. All entries must be submitted online no later than midnight on Friday 29th September, 2017. Tip Jar, at its sole discretion, reserves the right to extend this date under reasonable circumstances. Public voting will run from  from 9am October 2nd until Midnight October 20th, 2017 at midnight. Judges voting will occur during the month of October, 2017.
  2. ENTRANTS. All entrants must be Australian residents and able to attend an Awards event in Newcastle, NSW during 2017. The entrant must be a writer or co-writer of the song entered. Songwriter/s may not have assistance from a person who has a Publishing or Artist Contract with any agency that may conflict with being Awarded a prize. The entrant must hold the rights to the recording.
  3. MULTIPLE COMPOSERS. Songs may be written by multiple composers/writers working together in a group. If an entry is submitted by a group. In this competition we have limited songwriting partnerships to a maximum of 5 people.
  4. NUMBER OF ENTRIES. There is no limit to the number of individual songs artists or groups may enter. Each song entered must have its own entry form listing all composers. Each entry must be accompanied by an MP3 audio file online, with accompanying song lyrics.
  5. COMPOSITIONS. Material submitted must be original and should not infringe any copyrights or any other rights of third parties. A Song may be no longer than 7 minutes (in the event a composition is more than 7 minutes it is to be supplied as an excerpt or summary of work). Any entry longer than 7 minutes will be disregarded immediately.
  6. LANGUAGES OTHER THAN ENGLISH. Where a song has been composed in a language other than English, a full written translation of the song in English must be provided.
  7. ENTRY FORMS. Failure to properly complete all sections of the entry form will void the entry. Each song entered must have its own application form.
  8. ENTRY MATERIAL. Recordings must be submitted online via www.tipjar.org.au in MP3 audio format ONLY. Each entry must be labelled with the composer/s name and song title. Entries may be acoustic/live recordings, and will not be judged on production values. It is the Entrant’s responsibility to ensure that the recording submitted in respect of each entered song is complete and playable.
  9. CONFIRMATION OF ENTRY RECEIPT. A confirmation of entry receipt will be sent to the email address stipulated on the entry form within one week of receipt of entry. If you have not received confirmation for your entry within 24hrs of application contact info@tipjar.org.au
  10. JUDGING. All entries will be subject to a preliminary judging round before the finalists are selected and presented to the final judging panel. The Judges’ decision at both the preliminary and final round is final with no exceptions.
  11. NOTIFICATION OF RESULTS. Winners and runners-up will be posted on the Tip Jar website on completion of the judging process, after winning entrants have been informed via phone. A Prize Claim letter will be sent to relevant entrants.
  12. PRIZES. Winners will receive prizes as listed in the prize section on the tipjar.org.au website and will be arranged by mutual obligation of suitable time. These prizes must be used within 18 months of award or the winner may forfeit their prize. Please consult the prizes and categories for more information.
  13. PRIZE ALLOCATION. In the event of a winning entry being a song with more than one composer the allocation of the prize is a matter to be determined by the winning group of composers. Tip Jar will take no responsibility for allocation in such a case.
  14. PRIZE CLAIMS. All prizes must be claimed within four months of issue of the Prize Claim letter. Prizes not claimed within this period will be forfeited and will remain the property of the Tip Jar. PRIZES MUST BE REDEEMED IN AUSTRALIA ONLY.
  15. INDEMNITY. All entries submitted must be original songs and shall not infringe any copyrights or any other rights of any third parties. In particular, the Entrant warrants that he or she has obtained the written permission from any co-writer or publisher controlling any rights in the entered song. The Entrant shall, by entering, indemnify and hold the Organiser harmless from and against any claims inconsistent with the foregoing. The Entrant acknowledges that all songs entered will be distributed to the judging committee who will be selecting the Winner, and the Entrant agrees to release, indemnify, and hold the Organiser and judges harmless for any liability, damages, or claims for injury or loss to any person or property relating to, in whole or in part, directly or indirectly, participation in the Competition.

Judging & Prizes

  1. PROMOTIONAL USE. By entering the competition, the entrant agrees that entry materials may be used by the Tip Jar for non-sale promotional purposes as a non-exclusive license. This may include placing samples of the winning entries and reproducing the winning lyrics on the Tip Jar website and social media. The rights and ownership of the songs will remain with the composers. The entrant must also be the owner of the recording rights.
  2. PROTECTION AND DESTRUCTION OF PERSONAL INFORMATION. Tip Jar will not use or distribute the entrant’s personal information for marketing or any other purposes. All personal information shall be destroyed within a reasonable time after the determination of winners. However, in the event that personal information is accidentally accessed or transmitted, Tip Jar will not be liable.
  3. RETURN OF ENTRY MATERIAL. Entered material will not be returned.
  4. PERFORMANCE AND MEDIA OPPORTUNITIES. By entering the competition, winners of the Competition automatically agree to publicly perform their winning song at the request of Tip Jar for a 12-month period from November 1st 2017, pending the availability of the winning entrant. Such performances may include paid and unpaid performances. Entrants also agree to conduct various media interviews as requested by the Tip Jar by mutual agreement of timing to promote Tip Jar and their winning entry.
  5. JUDGING. All entries will initially be evaluated by the Organisers to ensure that all criteria are met. All songs meeting the criteria will then be sent to a judging committee that will select one winner. The judging committee will comprise a selection of high-profile music industry professionals including the Ambassadors of the project. All entries will be rendered anonymous and numbered prior to judging. Entries will be judged equally on melody, composition, originality, and lyrics (where applicable). Lyrics may be in any language. Production value and quality of performance will not be considered. The judging committee will not be in a position to provide Entrants with feedback or a critique in relation to entered songs. The judging committee’s decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.


Tip jar will make every effort to ensure that the technology utilised in this competition will enable all entrants to submit their songs into the competition. Should any fault arise, Tip Jar will make every effort to rectify the fault but will accept no liability for the no receipt of an entry due to technical failure.


By submitting an application form to Tip Jar you are bound by the Laws of NSW.