Song Contest Judges

Tod Howarth

Tod_HowarthPoint Loma native and resident Tod Howarth is best known for having served as the vocalist/keyboardist/guitarist for Kiss spinoff Frehley’s Comet featuring original guitarist Ace Frehley. Tod’s music career began in the early 1980’s with hard rockers 707. He spent nearly 20 years as the touring keyboard player for Cheap Trick, released 5 solo albums, and provided background vocals, keyboards, and guitar on several major recordings. 2016 saw Tod’s new super group Four by Fate release their debut album Relentless to critical acclaim. Tod remains extremely active in the San Diego community, performing at charity events such as Stand Down for veterans and their families.

Margaret McClure

Margaret McClure is a 15 year veteran in the music business. Writing, producing and recording from her studio (T-Street Sound Lab in San Clemente, CA), as well as Bigrock Studios in Escondido. In the music industry, Margaret has become a powerful one stop shop for all things creative, relevant, and commercial.

Josquin des Pres

Josquin des Pres is a prolific songwriter, composer, producer and author who has gained and maintained the respect of his peers through decades in the music industry. Over his 30 year career, Josquin has co-written dozens of songs with Elton John’s legendary lyricist Bernie Taupin, and collaborated with hit songwriters such as Winston Sela & Andy Goldmark. Long-time owner of Track Star Studios in La Mesa, Josquin has recorded multi-platinum artists ranging from Jack Johnson to The Gipsy Kings. Josquin also runs his own publishing company, Track Star Entertainment, Inc.

Billy Alexander

After years of performing and touring on the east coast, Billy made the move to L.A. playing and recording around town with some great musicians and bands including The May Kings. Soon he met up with fellow east coasters Scot Sax (songwriter, Faith Hill, Tim McGraw, Joey McIntyre) and Mark Getten (RCA’s Wanderlust) to form FEEL. FEEL landed a record deal with Nashville’s Curb Records in late 2002 and spawned 2 radio hits “Won’t Stand In Your Way” going to #18 on national radio charts and “Got Your Name On It” reaching #28 on Billboard Charts.

Billy continues to tour and record for other artists including with Sony/Columbia recording artist Anna Nalick and playing lead guitar/vocals for John Waite (The Babys, Bad English, Alison Krauss). And in addition to lending his exceptional skills as a lead guitarist, he is establishing himself as a world class songwriter and producer in the world of Pop and Contemporary Country music, earning one of Songwriter Universe Magazine’s Top 5 best songs of the month September 2006,having songs cut in Nashville and around the country, and producing albums and demos for a variety of artists such as Hayley Orrantia (The Goldbergs, X-Factor), Alaina Blair, who’s current debut album Billy produced, performed on and co-wrote all of the songs, was just nominated for “Best Americana Album 2013” by The San Diego Music Awards and won ‘Best Country Album’ as well as Billy named ‘Best Producer 2013’ by the LA Music Critic Awards. Previous to that he produced Alaina Blair’s “Gypsy Girl” which was nominated “Best Rock Album” by The Los Angeles Music Awards.

Billy is currently writing and recording with Ron Blair of Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers as well as continuing scheduled Nashville writing trips, performing multiple live dates each month and a maintaining a busy schedule with producing and recording. His latest effort with Alaina Blair- “Here I Am” is nominated for ‘Best Pop Album’ by San Diego Music Awards.