The 2003 Shortlist Music Prize will be awarded Oct. 16 at Los Angeles' Wiltern Theater, Billboard reports in the Aug. 2 issue. Among this year's 20 listmakers are Dave Matthews, Tori Amos, Tom Waits,

The 2003 Shortlist Music Prize will be awarded Oct. 16 at Los Angeles' Wiltern Theater, Billboard reports in the Aug. 2 issue. This year marks the third annual competition, which, like the U.K.'s Panasonic Mercury Prize, honors projects for their creative and adventurous appeal rather than their commercial success.

The 2003 edition will be bolstered by a TV tie-in, as well as plans for a tour and a compilation CD. Last year's prize went to N*E*R*D's virgin debut, "In Search Of..."

"We're in discussions for a Shortlist television special with a cable outlet," says Tom Sarig, former MCA VP of A&R who founded the Shortlist Music Project with marketing consultant Greg Spotts. "We're also planning a tour right now that will go out right after the show, as well as a compilation CD featuring many of the nominees. Basically, we're expanding on our mission to enlarge the audience for some of the best emerging artists."

The nominees are selected by 20 "listmakers," each of whom selects chooses albums released between July 1, 2002, and June 30, 2003. Albums are ineligible if they have sold more than 500,000 copies in the U.S.

Among this year's 20 listmakers are Dave Matthews, Tori Amos, Tom Waits, Coldplay's Chris Martin, Spike Jonze, Cameron Crowe, Mos Def, Gwen Stefani, the Neptunes, the Roots' Ahmir "?uestlove" Thompson and Erykah Badu.

"The listmakers seem to understand what we're trying to do better and better every year -- we get fewer nominations from artists who have sold a ton of records and we get more and more with a remarkable range and diversity," Spotts says.

The listmakers will select 10 finalists, who will be announced around Labor Day. They will then pick the winner on the evening of the awards ceremony, which will include performances by several of the finalists.

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