Contest: Create the Best (Fake) Children's Album of All Time

figment_logo2a.jpgMy friend Larry and his friend Eric have a pretty cool website called Figment that seems like the logical extension of our Rock Band-playing, statistics-obsessed culture -- the site lets users create a fake band, record a fake album and market it to fans. (Their motto: "Figment – All Bands, No Music!")

I think it's time to expand their list of artists, albums, and audiences. So in conjunction with Eric and Larry, I'm proud to introduce to you the Figment Children's Album Contest.

The contest begins today, Wednesday, February 10 and will run until Wednesday, March 10. During that time you're being asked to create a children's album -- or, at least, everything except the actual music. The album’s artwork, description and songs all have to be relevant to the kids music genre. The crack Figment editorial staff (plus me) will be judging the entries and will crown a winner and two runners up. The winner will receive a prize package containing 2,500 pieces of Lucre (the "money" that can be redeemed for prizes on the website) plus a t-shirt. The first runner up will receive 1,500 pieces of Lucre plus a t-shirt, and the second runner up will receive a copy of 1,000 pieces of Lucre plus a t-shirt. In addition, I'll throw a kids' CD for each of the three winners. (I'm talkin' good CDs with excellent design value -- think Lunch Money's Dizzy, for example.)

To enter please follow these basic rules:
1. You must be a registered Figment user to participate. If you don’t currently have a Figment account please click here to create one. This contest is open to Figment users worldwide.
2. Create a fake band on Figment and release a children's album with cover art. You may also release a children's album from an existing band that you have previously created. To be considered an album must be targeted at children and families, which is articulated and reflected in the album artwork, description and song titles. Once you have released the album or album(s) you want to submit as an entry please post the band and album name along with a link as a comment to this post, so that we and other users can check it out. If you don’t post the band/album name as a comment to this post or your children's album entry won’t be considered.
3. Users may enter as many children's albums as they would like.
4. Any artwork used in the creation of your album cover should either be original or at least one at which you have the permission of the copyright owner to use. If you do use someone else’s work you need to make it your own by at the very least adding text or something that makes it your own. Any album designs that are judged as being a copy of an existing work will be disqualified. We will also disqualify any album cover that is offensive in nature – sexist, racist or hate-based.
5. The contest will run from Wednesday, February 10 until Wednesday, March 10, 2010. All submissions must be posted by no later than 11:59 pm ET on Wednesday, March 10.
6. By no later than Tuesday, March 16th, Figment (with help from me) will select the Top 3 children's albums – a winner and two runners up. The winner and runners up will be announced on Wednesday, March 17, 2010.

We’re going to be judging the entries based on the creativity of the album’s song titles, back story, and artwork, as well as on the artist's biography. So good luck and let your inner-child (or inner-children's musician) run amok!