Unsigned Music Talent on Collision Course in Burnout Bandslam!
CHERTSEY, UK, 25 July, 2005 – Electronic Arts (NASDAQ: ERTS), the world's leading interactive entertainment software company has joined forces with Gibson Guitar and Hard Rock International to launch a European-wide music competition for a place on a videogame soundtrack. Dubbed the BurnoutTM Bandslam!, unsigned acts from across Europe can enjoy a summer of hot competition in Hard Rock Cafes in four countries across Europe. They will be battling for the ultimate prize of getting a chance of having their original song included in a future BurnoutTM game and become the proud new owner of the ultimate guitar package from musical giant Gibson Guitar.

"We are excited for the bands who will sign up to be part of this fantastic opportunity", says Jan Bolz, Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing EA Europe. "The Burnout franchise lends itself perfectly to this kind of involvement from European music bands – entertaining, racy and edgy. The winner will help us bring breakthrough music to a worldwide audience."

To enter, unsigned bands can upload their original song into the Burnout Bandslam website on www.burnoutbandslam.com. A panel of independent judges will choose four bands per country to compete at the national finals at Hard Rock Cafés in Barcelona, Berlin, Paris and Manchester (UK) throughout September and have a chance to win a Gibson Guitar prize package.

The four regional finalists will then join the European final at the Hard Rock Café in Barcelona on 5th October where they will have the once in a lifetime opportunity to play live in front of top A&Rs from the European music scene. The winner of the competition will be whisked off to a recording studio where their track will be professionally recorded and finally get an opportunity to be included in a future Burnout game.

"Hard Rock was founded on spreading the culture of rock 'n' roll, and this unique 'battle of the bands' is the perfect way to continue this pursuit," says Sean Dee, Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, Hard Rock International. "Hard Rock International Gibson Guitar and EA share a commitment to launching and supporting new music talent, and we're excited to host this cutting edge event in our cafes throughout Europe."

"Gibson Guitar has always supported emerging artists around the globe," said Henry Juszkiewicz, Chairman and CEO of Gibson Guitar. "The Burnout Bandslam competition reinforces our commitment to providing the best instruments to all musicians who are out to achieve their ultimate dream of getting their music played."

The Burnout franchise is developed by EA's Criterion Studios in the UK. Its latest title - Burnout: Revenge recently won the title of 'Best racing game in the Game Critics Awards: Best of E3 2005' and will hit retail shelves across Europe this Autumn. It will be available for the Playstation®2 computer entertainment system and Xbox® video game system from Microsoft.


About Electronic Arts
Electronic Arts (EA), headquartered in Redwood City, California, is the world's leading interactive entertainment software company. Founded in 1982, the company develops, publishes, and distributes interactive software worldwide for videogame systems, personal computers and the Internet. Electronic Arts markets its products under four brand names: EA SPORTSTM, EATM, EA SPORTS BIGTM and POGOTM. In fiscal 2005, EA posted revenues of $3.1 billion and had 31 titles that sold more than one million copies. EA's homepage and online game site is www.electronicarts.co.uk. More information about EA's products and full text of press releases can be found on the Internet at www.electronicarts.co.uk/press

About Gibson

Gibson Europe is the centralized sales, marketing and distribution base for Gibson Guitar's world-famous musical instruments. Located in Vianen, The Netherlands, Gibson Europe provides the hub between Gibson's corporate headquarters in the US and Gibson's distributor-partners in continental Europe, the U.K., Scandinavia and the Mediterranean. Gibson is known worldwide for producing classic models in every major style of fretted instrument including acoustic and electric guitars, mandolins and banjos. Gibson Guitar Corp's family of brands includes Epiphone, Dobro, Kramer, Steinberger, Tobias, Slingerland, Maestro, Baldwin, Hamilton and Wurlitzer. Visit Gibson's website at www.gibson.com or www.gibson.com/press

About Hard Rock International
Hard Rock International, one of the most globally-recognized music, entertainment and dining brands, has 120 signature Hard Rock Cafes in 40 countries and owns the world's greatest collection of music memorabilia. Known for its collectible and fashion merchandise, live concerts, Hard Rock Live performance venues, hardrock.com and Hard Rock Hotels and Casinos, Hard Rock International, Inc. is a wholly-owned subsidiary of London-based The Rank Group Plc (NASDAQ: RANKY). For more information on Hard Rock, visit www.hardrock.com.

Electronic Arts, EA, EA SPORTS, EA SPORTS BIG, POGO and Burnout are trademarks or registered trademarks of Electronic Arts Inc. in the U. S. and/or other countries. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners
Related Resources:
Game: Burnout: Revenge (Xbox)