After reviewing 300+ entries from around the WXPN listening region, our panel of judges is pleased to announce the four finalists for WXPN’s 24 Hour Song Challenge.

The prompt was “Summertime,” and that topic was interpreted by indie rocker Best Bear in the song “Fireworks,” by soulful crooner Khalil Amaru in “Dear June,” by folk singer-songwriter Mackenzie Johnson in “Sunburn,” and by R&B / pop singer Yuneer Gainz in “Grown Man Tears.”

Watch all four entries below, chosen by our panel of judges: Philly artist Donn T, XPN member Michelle Squiccimara, XPN digital content manager Heather Hurlock, XPN midday host Mike Vasilikos, XPN Local host John Vettese, and XPN program director Bruce Warren. Throughout this week, we’ll bring you spotlights on each of these artists and their process for writing the song.

Each of the finalists receives a one-year WXPN membership and a $500 honorarium — except for the Grand Prize winner, who will receive a $1000 honorarium, ten hours of studio time at MilkBoy Recording Studio, a spot to perform the winning song live at the XPoNential Music Festival, and a one-year WXPN Program Partner Membership. We’ll reveal the Grand Prize winner on Monday, July 1st.

Best Bear / @bestbearmusic

Best Bear "Fireworks" (WXPN 24-Hour Song Challenge)
WXPN Song Challenge - Khalil Amaru “Dear June”
Mackenzie Johnson - Sunburn (WXPN 24-Hour Song Challenge)