NBC has picked up 11 episodes of the songwriting competition series “Songland,” produced by “The Voice” executive producer Audrey Morrissey and one of the show’s coaches, Maroon 5 frontman Adam Levine.
Each episode will pit five songwriters against one another as they perform original songs before a panel of three producers and a major recording artist. The top three performers will then be paired with one of the producers to flesh out the track in the studio, with the recording artist left to choose one winner.
The panel lined up for the first episode includes Charlie Puth, OneRepublic’s Ryan Tedder, “Pitch Perfect” star Ester Dean and country singer-songwriter Shane McAnally.
The concept for the show was devised by Eurythmics co-founder Dave Stewart, who will also executive produce, along with Morrissey and director Ivan Dudynsky. Tedder and Josh Gummersall are producers on the project, which hails from Morrissey’s Live Animals in association with Universal Television Alternative Studio, Dave Stewart Entertainment and Levine’s 222 Productions.
“Songwriters shape the anthems and tell the stories of each generation, and now we’re pulling back the curtain on the collaborative process and opening the door for new talent to emerge,” said Universal Television Alternative Studio president Meredith Ahr. “While filming our first episode, the excitement was palpable as we witnessed the creative direction of our panelists transform and elevate the music right before our eyes. Without a doubt, ‘Songland’ will inspire music lovers and give us all a greater appreciation for the songs we love.”
“Music touches people’s lives daily, but few understand how the songs they love are made,” said Morrissey. “Songwriters are the unseen creative force of the music industry. Their lyrics and melodies affect us in deep and meaningful ways, and I’m excited to be part of a show that puts a spotlight on the creators of songs.”
“Songwriters, whether you are aware of it or not, compose the theme songs to our lives. A song can be the pillar on which our dreams are made of or the shoulder on which we cry,” said Stewart. “I’ve been writing songs with and for other people for 40 years and it’s always a thrill to hear those songs interpreted and recorded by all kinds of artists. I’m excited for the viewers to see and hear that magic being created between unknown songwriters and our panel of hit-making mentors.”
“‘Songland’ has been an ongoing passion project for both myself as well as my team at 222,” said Levine. “As a songwriter, I am all too familiar with the challenges that face the music community today. With this new series, we are excited to provide opportunities that will not only impact these songwriters’ careers but also give them a platform to truly showcase their talent to a global audience.”