A KIRRIEMUIR band has been given the big thumbs up by judges at the Live and Unsigned 2009 regional finals - qualifying for the live area finals on Saturday, May 2!

Along with the other most impressive acts across Scotland and North-East England, including Hello Pirates? from Dundee, Emerald Sunday will compete at the live area finals for a place in the National Grand Final.

Live and Unsigned is a national music competition for unsigned bands, vocal groups and solo artists to compete live. Out of over 10,000 registrations in 2008, Emerald Sunday have again sailed through to the next stage of the biggest music talent search for original acts in the UK.

Live and Unsigned's popularity comes from its reputation for encouraging originality. The acts taking part are commended for doing their own thing; being individual, original and performing their own genre and style live!

Chris Grayston, events director of Live and Unsigned said: "We are interested in discovering and exposing talent at its best - live! It is as simple as we say Get Live, Get Signed."

The five Kirrie lads - Gary Aitchison (lead vocals/guitar), Alan Hunter (vocals/guitar), Matt Fleming (guitar), Scott Crawford (bass) and Craig Duncan (drums) - will go head-to-head with other acts in a live battle to prove that they are the best in Scotland and North East England.

Commenting on the atmosphere before their recent success at the regional finals on Saturday past, Gary said: "It was absolutely amazing. We arrived really nervous, in fact we arrived so early we watched the final before ours because they held three finals that day.

"We were listening to all these other bands and this probably made us more nervous. Then when it came to our final we were the last act on, so we had to wait until the very end. It was quite nerve-wracking hearing what was going on.

"When we were waiting, we spoke to Lee from Kiddo360 who offered us advice and he was just brilliant."

The six piece band, Kiddo360 ( were the winners of Live and Unsigned 2008 and have since taken home the award for best UK Live and Unsigned band at the Vodafone Live Music Awards in September 2008.

Gary said: "Kiddo360 were standing at the side of the stage when we gave our performance. They were jumping about supporting us and they even took away Emerald Sunday t-shirts to wear. Its great to have their support after seeing us performing only once.

"Our fans were amazing. There were around 600 in total but our fans took up the front two rows and so there was about 80 of them supporting us."

In front of a capacity audience and professional judging panel, the lads were asked to perform two songs; one of their best own written songs and the other which is to be a creative cover.

"For the area finals, it is the same kind of set up so we are going to think up another cover for the next round, along with one of our own songs."

The band was formed in April 2008 and they have released their debut album, New Beginning.

Click here to visit Emerald Sunday online

One of the many things that the lads say they have in common with each other is that they are all 'Kirrie Lads' - and they are proud of it too!

Everyone in the band shares the same ambition and determination to entertain but also to have fun in the process.

The area finals of Live and Unsigned 2009 combines all the successful entries from all over Scotland and North East England to compete on Saturday May 2, at the Journal Tyne Theatre in Newcastle, for a place in the National Grand Final.

Up for grabs is a recording and management contract with Future Music for the overall winner, with an investment of up to 20,000 to release a single.

The winning act will be thrust into the media spotlight through television, radio and the press and furthermore, the winners of the different categories (Indie, Urban, Pop/Acoustic and Metal) will all be invited on the UK Live and Unsigned Tour.

Grab your chance to see the band this weekend when they, and four other talented acts, perform in The Plough, Forfar, this Saturday (March 21) from 8 pm.

For more information about Emerald Sunday, including other up and coming gigs, visit Hello Pirates? can be found at For more competition details visit