Songs of the Centenary is now closed. The winning songs may be found here.  

Songs of the Centenary (SOTC) is a global quest for songs of Commemoration, Remembrance and Unity created by children. This search drew from submissions in partnership with the Never Such Innocence Poetry & Art Competition.

SOTC officially launched in Liverpool on Thursday 17th November 2016 at the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Hall. 


We are incredibly excited to be in partnership with Dave Stewart Entertainment, and supported by IVE through its Arts Council ‘bridge’ role, on this journey. Together, we enlisted the support of leading artists to create music, and of children to write lyrics. Fused together they create The Songs of the Centenary...

We created an online platform, powered by Trackd (which you have free access to), providing a secure environment to create music. A key element is collaboration and via our App, entrants had the opportunity to write a song, add drums, guitar and sitar, with other young people across the United Kingdom, and the world.  

Alternatively, entrants could write their own music and record it directly onto Trackd, or upload pre-existing music via Voice Notes, Dropbox or similar.

Entrants to Songs of the Centenary were able to apply for an Arts Award which goes toward a portfolio or arts log that shows off their creativity and gives a recognised national qualification or award to put on their CV.

The judges' selections were performed at the NSI and SOTC Award Ceremony, and every entrant received a personalised Certificate of Commendation.

In 2018 we shall create one Centenary album, a collection of Songs of the Centenary. 

    The competition is now closed. The songs will be judged by a panel of music professionals. No cash or prize of monetary value will be awarded. All writers will retain the rights to their original material - with the exception that a submission will grant a license in perpetuity to SOTC to exploit the song (meaning if you submit a song, we can play it…and if it makes any money, you will be paid accordingly). Parents must submit songs for children under 13. If entering music as a group there must be a lead collaborator who will submit on behalf of the entire group.  We would encourage teachers to manage their school’s SOTC profile.

    Songwriting tips from our Artist in Residence, Marty Longstaff of The Lake Poets.

    • THEME - Think about something that you care about, that has moved you or that you want to raise awareness of.  For example, you might care about animal welfare, or you might have been moved by a sad story you read about someone during the First World War. When you have a theme that you hold dear to you, words come easily.
    • IMAGINATION - Your imagination is a powerful tool and to write a good song you need to use it. Try to think a little differently to others and see different takes on things. If your songs theme is about a soldier, try to think about what he is thinking and feeling, or what his family back home are thinking and going through. Put yourself in the shoes of another and dream.
    • STYLE - Pick a style of music you like and then write a song like that. You might like sad mellow piano songs, or loud noisy guitar songs. You might like happy, bouncy pop music, or heavy, rhythmical hip-hop. Once you have style in your mind the process of getting a 'feel' for your song comes quickly
    • WORD POWER - Use tricks and techniques you know from English class such as rhyme, alliteration, metaphor, and simile to add flavour to your writing. Be descriptive, contrast and compare, make full use of adverbs and adjectives, and get your point across as concisely as you can. You don't have long in a 3 minute song to make a point, and these features of language help your words stay in the mind of the listener
    • HAVE FUN – Song writing is meant to be fun, it's meant to be expressive and it's meant to make you feel good. If you aren't having fun, step back and look for another route to get where you want to be. There are no rights or wrongs when it comes to being yourself and saying how you feel about something. Now get writing!