Ark Music Factory, the company that discovered viral music phenomena Rebecca Black and Alana Lee and broke Lexi St. George big with ABC’s Good Morning America, is looking for the next teen music sensation: YOU! Do you think you have what it takes—natural talent, a great singing voice and killer stage presence? Then this is the contest for you.

This Friday, Ark launches a nationwide online talent search for the next Ark Star. Ark uses both traditional and non-traditional means to identify, develop and prepare artists to break into the music business—and gain fame, respect and skills along the way.  The Ark Star Viral Star contest represents the latest way Ark is seeking talent. Aspiring artists need to get their friends, family and fans to help them if they want to claim the grand prize. Kids can get a shot at fame from the team that helped launch one of the most successful music videos of all time.

It’s easy to enter: starting FRIDAY, July 22, unsigned hopefuls aged 10-17 can upload their music videos to YouTube and register at  On August 5, registration closes and the voting begins.  Contestants recruit votes for their video and the top 40 vote getters make it to the first round of finalists.  Over the next month, successive voting—friends, family and fans of each artist—narrows the field down to the top 20, 10 and 5 finalists.  On September 16, Ark Music Factory will announce the grand prize winner.

If the winning video gets more than 10,000 fan votes, the contestant receives a grand prize package—worth an estimated $15,000—including:

  • A song written by Ark Music Factory founder Patrice Wilson especially for the winner
  • Their track professionally recorded at a Los Angeles recording studio
  • A full-length music video produced by Ark Music factory of the song
  • The chance for distribution to millions of fans across the Ark network
  • A four-night stay at a boutique Los Angeles hotel and spa BLVD

Ark will award a consolation prize of a brand new Apple iPad2 to the winning contestant if the winner does not reach the minimum 10,000-vote threshold.


Other runner-up prizes include $100 prize packs from Wowwee Toys, consisting of the Paper Jamz Guitar, Drums and Pro Series Mic just like the one current Ark Star Lexi St. George uses in the latest ad from the hit toy company; cosmetics; music; apparel and more.  Other rules and conditions apply; contestants should visit for full rules and details.

“We’re terrifically excited about this program,” says Ark Music Factory Founder Patrice Wilson.  “I am all about the passion for music—it’s driven the success of this company—and I know so many kids out there feel the same way.  Ark aims to give these young artists a platform for exposure they might not otherwise get, and I’m really looking forward to reviewing the submissions.  Come on, kids, enter!”

*     *      *

Meanwhile, Ark Music Factory’s artist Lexi St. George, whom Good Morning America launched on its ”One Week to Hit it Big: Pop Star” series, is steadily climbing the ladder to stardom.  She’s just finished filming her very first TV commercial for WowWee’s Paper Jamz Pro Jam Series Microphone.  The ads feature Lexi and her debut single and video “Dancing to the Rhythm.”  WowWee will support the Paper Jams Pro Jam Series Microphone with a multi-million dollar marketing campaign expected to start airing next month.

The Paper Jamz Pro Series Microphone helps kids of all ages sing like a pro.  Users transfer popular tunes—hundreds to choose from today directly—from their existing music files onto their Pro Microphones. Onboard controls offer the vocalist “perfect pitch,” chorus, harmony, vibrato and other vocal effects, which are played back through the Mic’s speaker.  The Paper Jamz Pro Series Microphone MSRP is $29.99 and is available at Wal-Mart now, and other stores such as Target, Toys R US and Kmart later this month.

WowWee’s Paper Jamz guitar was one of the world’s most popular toy debuts last year, selling over 4 million units worldwide and delighting kids and adults around the globe.


My Epic performing their last final show before COVID-19

Between the White Noise

My Epic's last full-length album came out in 2013; despite a number of EPs along the way, the band's dedication to their craft, lyrical approach, and unyielding approach to let the music come naturally has made them critical darlings. Now, they're learning to interact and feed a rabid fanbase in between albums and in a new normal.


Full Feature
HM covers from over the years

HM Magazine Turns 35

In 1985, Doug Van Pelt photocopied a letter-sized sheets of paper, bound them together, and handed them out in person on the campus of the University of Texas at Austin. It's all digital now, but, along the way, Van Pelt stirred up quite a few waves, played some seriously heavy music, and made a few friends along the way. Here: A quick look back at the magazine's 35-year history with Van Pelt and new owner, David Stagg.


Full Feature
Employed to Serve

Forward Under a Dying Sun

Most of these days, the sun rises and sets on a world that feels like it's dying. Across the pond, where Employed to Serve calls home, they're learning how to support their latest record a year into its release. HM contributor Andrew Voigt recently sat down with Justine Jones to learn more about the band, marrying your bandmates, and their outside shot at touring with Rammstein.


Full Feature
All Features