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Teen's music video chosen for national contest

Public invited to vote for favorite entries

Oct. 27, 2009

Brookfield teen Nora Collins has only been playing guitar and writing songs for about a year, but already her music is receiving national attention as part of a Country Music Television contest.

Collins' video for her song "Don't Slow Down" was one of 64 chosen nationwide to compete in CMT's City Madness contest for unsigned artists. Visitors to madness.cmt.com can view videos made by Collins and other up-and-coming country artists, and vote for their favorites.

Unlike many in the contest, 15-year-old Collins just started playing and writing music last summer. The Brookfield East High School sophomore has released a full-length CD of original songs and multiple music videos.

So how'd she get started?

"I was just kind of really bored one summer day, and I had a guitar in my room," Collins said. "So I just thought, 'Oh why not? Just pick it up and see what happens.' "

After finding an online chart of guitar chords, Collins said, she immediately started writing her first song, "Every Time." She finished it that day. Nine more songs followed, which she recorded at her uncle's home studio and released as a CD called "Red Chuck Taylors."

But before the album and music videos, Collins had to get over her bashful streak.

"I was real shy when I started. I didn't want to share them with anyone," she said of her songs. "But then I played ("Every Time") for my mom, and she just really, really liked it."

Now Collins performs most Saturday evenings at Brookfield's Potbelly Sandwich Works and she plans to try out for American Idol next year.

"I would love to continue to play for people," she said.

Collins hopes the CMT contest will generate more interest in her music, and more gigs. Voting for the first round ends Nov. 2. Each round will determine which videos continue in the competition, and the winner will be revealed Dec. 15.

A win would send Collins to Nashville for a recording session and a private showcase with executives at Valory Music, as well as a backstage experience with Reba McEntire.

FYI

To learn more about Nora Collins and to hear her music, visit her Web site at www.noracollins.com or become a fan on Facebook at facebook.com/pages/Nora-Collins/174082323640.

AT A GLANCE

WHAT: See Nora Collins perform live.

WHERE: Potbelly Sandwich Works, 12455 W. Capitol Drive, Brookfield

WHEN: 6 to 7 p.m. Saturday

ONLINE: www.noracollins.com

FYI

To watch Nora Collins' music video and vote, go to madness.cmt.com and follow these instructions:

• Click the "Vote" link on the left.

• Click the picture of Jack Ingram, the first person on the left.

• Click "Start."

• After viewing a brief ad, click on "Nora Collins" in the bracket.

• View Nora Collin's music video.

• Click "Vote" below the video.

• At the bottom left of the screen, click "Submit your votes," and then "OK."

There is no limit to the number of times you can vote.

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