Westwood One

Westwood One Partners with MARS Chocolate for an Epic Show and an Epic Showdown during SXSW

Exclusive NASH Live in Austin Performance to Feature AURORA, Mo Pitney, Breaking Southwest, and More

Event Kicks Off National Taste Test for America’s Favorite TWIX® and Social Activations for SNICKERS® Crisper

NEW YORK, NY – March 9, 2016– Westwood One and MARS Chocolate North America have set a sweet stage for an exclusive night of music, merriment, candy sampling, SNICKERS® social media — and a colossal clash between Left TWIX® and Right TWIX® for the title of “America’s Favorite TWIX®.” On Wednesday, March 16, 2016, Westwood One will present NASH Live in Austin, a concert performance powered by TWIX® and Snickers® and featuring six hot musical acts – AURORA, Mo Pitney, LANco, Haley Georgia, Matt Gary, and Breaking Southwest, the Texas-based trio who were crowned the first-ever winners of NASH Next – a talent competition searching for the next Country music stars. Breaking Southwest was signed to NASH Records, a partnership with Big Machine Label Group, as part of their prize. The concert – and the throw down – will take place at Austin’s Rattle Inn, 610 Nueces Street, from 5 pm – Midnight CT.

The evening will kick off a nationwide taste challenge encouraging fans to “Taste and Vote” for their favorite TWIX®, Right or Left. During the course of the evening, the TWIX® archrivals will be sampling among the crowd. Fans participating in the “Taste and Vote” are encouraged to take the taste test and cast their vote using #LeftTWIX or #RightTWIX on Instagram and Twitter, and track the progress online at www.twix.com until a winner is declared in September. In addition, a social media wall and activations are in place for the SNICKERS® Crisper, a delicious combination of crisped rice and peanuts topped with a layer of caramel and coated in creamy SNICKERS® Brand milk chocolate. MARS introduced the new SNICKERS® Crisper in late 2015 after research revealed that consumers are looking for new textures in their snacking occasions.

“We are excited to kick off TWIX® Taste and Vote with Westwood One at NASH Live in Austin,” said Allison Miazga-Bedrick, TWIX® Brand Director, Mars Chocolate North America. “Fans can check the progress of the Taste and Vote campaign at TWIX.com, which includes live updates from both sides, real-time social feeds and a color coded map as each state declares a winner.”

Tommy Page, SVP, Brand Partnerships & NASH for Cumulus | Westwood One said, “We thrive on creating custom one-of-a-kind events for our advertisers, connecting them with today’s most relevant artists and their passionate fans. We are thrilled to present our two brands together at one of the most exciting music festivals of the year."

About the Artists

Norwegian singer-songwriter AURORA, known for hit songs “Half the World Away,” “Conqueror,” “Awakening,” and “Runaway,” is receiving international acclaim for her 2016 debut album, All My Demons Greeting Me As a Friend, which comes out on March 11. She kicks off a global tour on March 19. AURORA was first discovered when a friend uploaded her music to a streaming website. Her “frosty electronic textures, spare beats, and clear, emotive vocals” grabbed the attention of Made Management and then both Decca and Glassnote Records. AURORA released her first single, “Awakening,” in late 2013, and followed with her hit “Under Stars” in 2014. AURORA’s debut EP, Running With The Wolves, was released in 2015 to reviews that elevated her to the same pop realm as Bjork,Lykke Li , Florence & The Machine, and Lorde.

Mo Pitney, an Illinois native, moved to Nashville, TN at 20 years old and was quickly picked up by Curb Records. Very shortly afterwards, Pitney received an invitation to perform at the historic Grand Ole Opry. Pitney’s set, which included heartfelt hit “Clean Up on Aisle Five,” brought country’s elite to their feet for a near-minute long standing ovation. Pitney’s single “Country” broke into the Top 40 on the Country Airplay chart, and he’s aiming to release his debut album later this year.

Sony Music Nashville recording artists and five-member band, LANco, formed in 2013. In 2015, they released their self-titled EP featuring the tracks “Trouble Maker,” “We Do,” “American Love Story,” and “High.” LANco has been working on their debut album with Jay Joyce (Neon Cross), who is best known for his work with Eric Church, Little Big Town, Cage the Elephant, and Carrie Underwood.

After performing on the 12th season of American Idol, Haley Georgia moved to Nashville, TN to further pursue her music career. Determined to learn from some of the best in the industry, Haley sought the advice of Taylor Swift co-writer Liz Rose, producer Paul Worley, and publisher Arturo Buenahora, Jr. Georgia’s first single, “Ridiculous,” which led to a record deal with EMI Records Nashville, was released the summer of 2015. Her debuted EP, Pretty Girls Mixtape, followed later that year.

Independent recording artist Matt Gary’s music fuses contemporary Nashville sounds with pop melodies and rock & roll energy. After graduating from the University of Tampa and moving to Nashville, TN, Matt struck up a working relationship with producer Kent Wells to release his first single, "The Days You Live For," and EP, I’m Just Sayin’. Singles "City Lights" and "Summertime" followed in 2014, and in 2015, Gary teamed up with producer Ilya Toshinskiy to craft the pop-rock accented single "It's on You."

NASH Next winner, Breaking Southwest, is a North Texas band taking the country by storm.
Kent Bell (vocals/guitar), Kyle Gaston (guitar), and Lauren Hall (fiddle/vocals), formed Breaking Southwest in 2010. As the winner of NASH Next, the band will be going to radio this May with “Ghost Town,” their first major label release under NASH Records/Big Machine Label Group.

About Mars, Incorporated

In 1911, Frank C. Mars made the first Mars candies in his Tacoma, Washington kitchen and established Mars’ first roots as a confectionery company. In the 1920s, Forrest E. Mars, Sr. joined his father in business and together they launched the MILKY WAY® bar. In 1932, Forrest, Sr. moved to the United Kingdom with a dream of building a business based on the objective of creating a “mutuality of benefits for all stakeholders” – this objective serves as the foundation of Mars, Incorporated today. Based in McLean, Virginia, Mars has net sales of more than $33 billion, six business segments including Petcare, Chocolate, Wrigley, Food, Drinks, Symbioscience, and more than 75,000 Associates worldwide that are putting its Principles into action to make a difference for people and the planet through its performance.

Mars brands include: Petcare – PEDIGREE®, ROYAL CANIN®, WHISKAS®, BANFIELD® Pet Hospital, CESAR®, SHEBA®, DREAMIES® and NUTRO®; Chocolate – M&M’S®, SNICKERS®, DOVE®, GALAXY®, MARS®, MILKY WAY® and TWIX®; Wrigley – DOUBLEMINT®, EXTRA®, ORBIT® and 5™ chewing gums, SKITTLES® and STARBURST® candies, and ALTOIDS® and LIFESAVERS® mints. Food – UNCLE BEN’S®, DOLMIO®, EBLY®, MASTERFOODS®, SEEDS OF CHANGE® and ROYCO®; Drinks – ALTERRA COFFEE ROASTERS™, THE BRIGHT TEA COMPANY™, KLIX® and FLAVIA®; Symbioscience – COCOAVIA® and WISDOM PANEL®.

For more information, please visit www.mars.com. Follow us: facebook.com/mars, twitter.com/marsglobal, youtube.com/mars, linkedin.com/company/mars.

About Westwood One

Westwood One, the national-facing arm of Cumulus Media, offers audio products to reach listeners whenever, wherever they are. Westwood One is a trusted connection between audio companies, advertisers, and audience — with 8,200 broadcast radio stations and media partners who reach 245 million weekly listeners. The company’s portfolio features premium content with iconic, nationally syndicated media, sports and entertainment brands including the NFL, the NCAA, the Masters, the Olympics, Westwood One Backstage, the GRAMMYs, the Country Music Awards, and the Billboard Music Award. For more information please visit www.westwoodone.com.

Press Contact

Jana Polsky

Westwood One

jpolsky@westwoodone.com

(212) 641-2101