Jarvis Church reveals this year's Searchlight finalists

Searchlight judge Jarvis Church stops by q to reveal the final four contenders for this year's Searchlight competition.
This year's Searchlight finalists (clockwise from top left): Will, the Wolfe, Jaryd Stanley and the Long War. (Searchlight/CBC Music)

It's been a long journey since the hunt for Canada's next big act began back in January. From more than 1,200 entries in all genres from across Canada, we selected 10 finalists in each of the 23 regions. Then with the help of our panel of industry experts and the public, we whittled that down to the 25 national finalists, 23 regional winners plus the top two acts as determined by popular vote.

From there, we sent the top 25 to our celebrity judgesRuth B.Dan Kanter and Jarvis Church, who helped pick three artists to move on to the finale. On top of that, a fourth act was determined by popular vote.

Today, Church joined Tom Power to unveil the four artists who have completed this journey to become the Searchlight finalists. Here the four finalists:

The Long War (Vancouver City) 

The Long War is an indie band with haunting harmonies and soulful songwriting. Performing out of Vancouver, their music is rooted in Canadiana, drawing influences from folk, rock and hints of country. Focused on melding their voices, the Long War has created a sound that is tangible and beautiful.

Will (Toronto)

Born in Trinidad and Tobago, Will moved to Canada at the age of five. Coming from such a cultural background, Will has always had music embedded in her soul. She writes about true life experiences. It is a way for her to release and get closure from old chapters in life — the melodies acting as a second heart; the stage as another home. No matter what she has to face in this world the one thing she can always count on is her music, willpower and strength to get her by.

The Wolfe (Saskatchewan)

It's hard to believe that the members of this all-girl trio from Saskatchewan are only 17. Winner of Sasktel's Songwriter of the Year, the Wolfe touches on relatable subjects expressed through their risk-taking, cheeky, yet catchy tunes. Soft yet powerful vocals are contrasted with an underlay of delayed guitar, gritty bass and engaging beats. Having often been compared to Metric and the Cranberries, the Wolfe has also been called, "a female U2 that's able to get heavier and tackle more emotional subjects."

Popular vote winner: Jaryd Stanley (Toronto)

Stanley is a 23-year-old singer-songwriter originally from Rothesay, N.B. He moved to Toronto just over a year ago to pursue music as a career.

— Produced by Ben Jamieson


To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.