Blake O’Connor has been announced as the 2019 Toyota Star Maker in front of thousands of country music fans at the Toyota Star Maker 40th Grand Final held on Sunday night in Toyota Park.
Blake competed against nine other finalists to walk away with the title.
Blake’s performance received high praise from the judging panel, to win the prestigious title, for his first song If You Wanna Get to Heaven written by Mountain Daredevils and second song, Blake’s own original, Worth a Little More.
Star Maker is Australia’s most significant and longest-running search for new country music stars and has launched the careers of some of Australia’s biggest country artists including Keith Urban, Lee Kernaghan, James Blundell, Travis Collins, Gina Jeffreys, Beccy Cole, Sam McClymont (The McClymonts), Darren Coggan, Lyn Bowtell, Kirsty Lee Akers, and Kaylee Bell.
Last year’s winner Brad Cox, from Jindabyne, had a stellar year putting 75,000km on his Toyota since winning in January 2018. His hard work has earned him two nominations for best new talent and contemporary album of the year in the 2019 Toyota Golden Guitars.
In addition to the title of Toyota Star Maker winner, Blake receives a prize package which includes the use of a new Toyota vehicle and a fuel card for 12 months, a return trip to Nashville for CMA Fest where he will perform in the Aussie showcase.
Blake will also perform at major festivals and events throughout Australia and will also perform in Manchester UK at the Buckle and Boots Country Music Festival and join the artists line-up on Cruisin’ Country in October.
You can catch Blake at the 40 Years of Star Maker Concert alongside 27 former winners at 12noon on Wednesday 23 January at the Tamworth Regional Entertainment and Conference Centre (TRECC).
ABOUT BLAKE O'CONNOR:
Blake grew up in a home surrounded by country music – mostly Johnny Cash. At 14, Blake scored a gig as a wedding singer, so he wrote his first song for the occasion. And he hasn’t stopped writing and performing since. In 2015 he was a featured artist in the NSW Schools Spectacular playing four shows at the Sydney Entertainment Centre with audiences of more than 20,000 people.
Blake has opened the show for a number of big stars including Brooke and Adam Eckersley, Adam Brand, Russell Morris, Drew McAlister and the 2018 Toyota Star Maker winner Brad Cox.