SINGERS and bands should be getting their act together as details of how to apply for next year's OMG Hereford will be announced soon.

Last year's winner, Raye Harvey, says that anyone who wants to get their foot on the ladder of the music business should definitely make the effort to enter.

"I heard about the competition through Livewire," says Raye, who performed No Diggity by Backstreet featuring Dr Dre for her video entry.

"I really liked the song – it’s very hip hop and not the kind of thing I would normally sing but I really enjoyed the challenge of trying to make it a little different. I think I probably got the inspiration from my older sister who is also a singer," she said.

She also performed Gnarls Barkley's Crazy and a self-penned song. "I started writing properly when I joined the Livewire sessions run by the Music Pool," she explains.

Currently studying Music, English Literature and Spanish at A level, Raye has applied to music colleges in London, Manchester and Cardiff. "If I could be a professional musician I couldn't think of anything better," she says about where she'd like her studies to take her.

Raye has also been working to set up a band and now volunteers with Livewire, and played at The Courtyard earlier this week as the bid to become a City of Culture was launched.

Going to Birmingham for the OMG Live finals was she says, crazy. I'd never been to such a huge event, there were so many other musicians, and I definitely learned a lot from the experience.

"I think the reason I was successful is that I knew t6he songs I played really well. It's about the perfomrance and the way that you get the message of the song across - you have to really feel it. If your heart's not in it then it's not for you."

If it is, then definitely give it a shot. When I applied I didn't really imagine I could go all the way. I just wanted to see what I could do."