Out of thousands of entries, one rose to the top.

Watch Gaelynn Lea's Tiny Desk performance now!

meet the winner

Gaelynn Lea has been playing violin for more than 20 years. She builds on a repertoire of traditional Celtic and American fiddle music, writing original songs that incorporate folk-rock influences, looping tracks and an inventive improvisatory style. Gaelynn performs throughout northern Minnesota and Wisconsin and has collaborated with fellow Midwestern musicians Alan Sparhawk and Charlie Parr. She’s also a dedicated fiddle teacher and an advocate for artists and other people with disabilities. Watch her winning video.

We were excited to welcome Gaelynn to the Tiny Desk at NPR in Washington, D.C., where she played her own Tiny Desk concert. She also wins the opportunity to appear at a taping of NPR's Ask Me Another and to tour the United States with NPR and Lagunitas.

Celebrate with us

Join us for events across the U.S. to celebrate the 2016 Tiny Desk Contest! Watch this space throughout the spring for event updates and ticketing information.

Philadelphia, Pa.Tuesday, April 19

Tiny Desk Contest On The Road with WXPN

Brooklyn, N.Y.Tuesday, April 26

Gaelynn Lea appears on a live taping of NPR's Ask Me Another with WNYC

Chicago, Ill.Tuesday, May 3

Songs We Love Live with WBEZ at Lagunitas' Chicago Brewery

New York, N.Y.Wednesday, May 4

Tiny Desk Contest On The Road with WFUV

Seattle, Wash.Sunday, May 8

Tiny Desk Contest On The Road with KEXP

Portland, Ore.Monday, May 9

Songs We Love Live with Lagunitas and OPB

Petaluma, Calif.Tuesday, May 10

Songs We Love Live with KQED and KRCB at Lagunitas' Petaluma Brewery

Los Angeles, Calif.Thursday, May 12just announced!

Tiny Desk Contest On The Road

Nashville, Tenn.Tuesday, May 24

Tiny Desk Contest On The Road with WPLN

Austin, TexasThursday, June 2

Tiny Desk Contest On The Road with KUTX

hear more about gaelynn lea

NPR Music's Bob Boilen announced the winner on Morning Edition.  

All Things Considered's Audie Cornish spoke with Gaelynn later that day.

watch the entries

Musicians across the country have made amazing things for the 2016 Tiny Desk Contest.

Watch their videos! You might discover your new favorite artist.

see the latest

Thank you, Los Angeles!

We wrapped up the West Coast leg of our On The Road tour last week at No Vacancy in Los Angeles, Calif., where we heard from four local bands who entered the Tiny Desk Contest this year. Valley Queen, City City, Earth to Jupiter and KULA all played engaging, energy-packed sets in the venue’s back courtyard, and the bartender even whipped us up a special Tiny Desk cocktail. Cheers to that.

Stay tuned as we get ready for the final two stops on our 2016 tour: Nashville on May 24 and Austin on June 2!

Photo credits: Rebecca Aranda

Thank you, Petaluma!

Through warm afternoon sunshine and chilly Northern Californian dusk, we had a lovely time at Lagunitas’ TapRoom in Petaluma, Calif. last night. Gaelynn Lea performed with Alan Sparhawk before joining Thao Nguyen (of Thao & The Get Down Stay Down), Gabe Meline (of KQED), and Bob Boilen for a panel on the songs we love. Then, Thao ushered us out with a short and sweet acoustic serenade.

What we loved best last night, though, was seeing the legion of Tiny Desk Contest entrants who came out. It was a joy to meet so many of you in person. We hope to repeat that across the country, in Los Angeles on Thursday, and then Nashville on May 24th.

Image Credits: Talia Herman

Thank you, Portland!

We had a wonderful time at our Songs We Love Live event last night in Portland. We saw music from Ages and Ages (check out the shot from when they came down off the stage for their final song) and Tiny Desk Contest winner Gaelynn Lea. There was an excellent panel on the songs we love (featuring Gaelynn, Sarah Riddle of Ages and Ages, Bob Boilen, Grammy-nominated musician and producer Tucker Martine and OPB’s Jerad Walker) with some great audience picks, too (you can listen to our songs and yours on this playlist).

We’ve got another Songs We Love Live event tonight in Petaluma, and then we’re taking the tour to Los Angeles on Thursday. We hope to see you there.

Image credit: Inger Klekacz

Thank you, New York!

We went to New York yesterday for a show at the Gibson Brands New York Showroom with WFUV. The space is in the old Hit Factory studios — where artists like Bruce Springsteen and Michael Jackson once recorded. Last night, it was filled with emerging artists from the New York Tiny Desk Contest community. We saw a big-hearted, rootsy set from Phil Pickens and the Astronauts; a haunting and groove-heavy set from Iris Lune; and a roaring folk finale from Great Caesar. Thank you all for such a special time.

Image Credits: Quincy Ledbetter

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