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Meet 2024 Tiny Desk Contest winner the Philharmonik

Sacramento, Calif. group the Philharmonik is the winner of the 2024 Tiny Desk Contest, NPR Music announced today. The video they entered in this year’s contest, “What’s It All Mean,” “floored this year’s panel of judges,” writes Tiny Desk host and contest judge Bobby Carter. Watch it above.

“Everything in the video (the space, the attire, the characters we played, and the way we performed) was done with intention,” says lead singer Christian Gates.

“The planning for this was insane,” Gates continued. “The Sacramento community literally lifted me up to help me see this vision through when I had not a single penny to my name … There was a magic energy filling the space that I can’t explain, but I had a plan … This is a result of amazing teamwork and minds coming together.”

philharmonik band tiny desk contest 2024 winner sacramento california group band
Photo credit: Bernadette Rose

As for the use of ‘tiny desks’ in the video in conjunction with the song title, “What’s It All Mean,” Gates simply says that “I’m pretty sure most of us have pondered this question at a desk.”

In addition to Gates, the Philharmonik includes Moriah Wenzel (background vocals), Alicia Huff (background vocals), Courtney Miller (drums), Samuel Phelps (bass), Darius Upshaw (guitar), Connor Chavez (guitar), Jimmy Toor (flute), and Jeffery Archie (keys).

Related: NPR Music interview with Christian Gates

“I couldn’t do this without the Sacramento community and I’m eternally grateful,” Gates wrote in an Instagram post. “For real. ❤️❤️❤️” The post also includes a super-charming video where NPR host Bobby Carter gives the Philharmonik the news about their win.

The Tiny Desk Contest is NPR Music’s annual nationwide search for the next great undiscovered artist. Entries are encouraged from up-and-coming artists across the country. Each year’s winner then gets to play their own Tiny Desk concert and go on tour with NPR Music.

This year’s panel of judges includes:

See the full list of judges on the NPR website, where you can also read more about this year’s Tiny Desk Contest winner.


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