Local muso wins big
A BAND fronted by a Christian rocker born and bred in Mossman has taken out a prestigious songwriting competition.
Color The Hills, an original acoustic duo fronted by former Mossmanite Mikhail Laxton, have taken out the 2012 Easterfest Spotlight competition, winning a five-track EP recording contract with Hammered Silver Studios.
The Christian music duo only formed in Gladstone earlier this year, with Laxton on lead vocals and guitar and Jason Breed on lead guitar and back-up vocals.
“We love God and we love music and we want to use our gifts and talents to follow what God has planned for us,” Laxton said.
“My mum Natasha Czygan has always been incredibly supportive and knew from when I was a small boy that I had musical talent.
“She organised guitar lessons from local legend Bennett Walker and Omid Masters to help me get started.”
The band played in front of a 10,000-strong crowd and took on eight other bands as part of the competition last month, with a 20-minute set of four originals written by Laxton proving popular with the crowd and judges alike.
Entrants were judged by music industry professionals including former manager of Boy and Bear Rowan Brand and Hammered Silver Studios manager Tim Weatherall.
The acts were judged on musicianship, creative marketing and promotions, crowd size and response and feedback given by industry professionals.
Another bonus of first place is a spot on the Easterfest main stage in 2013 which has hosted heavyweight acts such as Switchfoot, Guy Sebastian and Stan Walker.
“We are hoping to maybe head back to Mossman and Port Douglas to play there at some stage and bring something to the area they may not have heard before.” Laxton said.
“There have been talks of a Secret Garden Tour in NSW, which is made up of intimate live music sessions in front of small crowds, something like what up and coming star Matt Corby has been doing down south.”
Color The Hills will begin recording their EP on June 29 and are hoping to release it before the end of the year.
Making waves: Mikhail Laxton