AUSTRALIAN musos have swept the 2010 International Songwriting Competition, with Kasey Chambers taking out the top prize.

The singer songwriter won the grand prize for her song Beautiful Mess, from her Golden Guitar-winning album Little Bird, competition organisers announced yesterday.

Chambers, who is expecting her third child with partner Shane Nicholson, said the song was inspired by her children.

“I was at home babysitting a friend’s one-year-old son along with my two boys. It was one of those chaotic days with kids running around and having lots of fun while this song was coming out,” she said.

“And that’s what it felt like that day – a beautiful mess. That’s what parenting constantly feels like. It’s specifically written for Arlo and Talon, who are the most important things in my entire life. I love them, and I have an outlet to show them that through songs.”

She takes home a cool $25,000 USD and another $20,000 in prizes.

Chambers also won first place in the Americana category for Devil On Your Back, and second place in the Performance category for Little Bird.

But a swag of other Aussie artist also picked up awards.

Melbourne’s Basement Birds took out first place in the AAA category, followed by Megan Washington in second place.

Something for Kate front man Paul Dempsey won second place in Adult Contemporary for Bats, from his solo album Everything is True.

Hewey Eustace took out the top Children’s Music award for Every Little Drop, a song he wrote for award-winning animated TV series dirtgirlworld.

Country music trio Jonah’s Road and Brisbane’s Anna Weatherup won third place in their respective categories of Country and Gospel/Christian.

Sydney four-piece Sierra Fin were runners up in the Instrumental category and Augie March front man Glenn Richards won third place in the Lyrics Only category for Barfly Prometheus from his solo album Glimjack.

Melbourne songstress Kimbra won the top Pop/Top 40 prize with Settle Down, the first single from her forthcoming debut album, and fellow Melbournites Children Collide won third place in the Rock category for their song Jellylegs.

As if that wasn’t enough to boast about, two Brisbane acts were also recognised in the Unsigned category. Inland Sea took out first place with All Fall Down, while My Fiction won third place for their track Every June.

The annual song contest recognises both emerging and established artists, and attracts more than 15,000 entries. This year’s judging panel included Tom Waits, Peter Gabriel, Rihanna, Kings of Leon, Ben Harper, Ben Folds, Jerry Lee Lewis and The Cure’s Robert Smith.

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