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Mr Channer said he saw an advertisement for Queenstown's singing competition and decided to finally do something about his penchant for open microphone nights.
''I've always done open mic [nights] in town,'' he said, but quickly added he had never done ''anything else'' with his talent.
Songstars was one reason to stay in Queenstown, he said.
For Mr James, the story is similar. He saw the poster for Songstars before leaving the resort, and returned for the competition.
Both have hopes of winning the event, which features a prize of having a song professionally recorded, but acknowledged the talent of other competitors.
Songstars is to be held in the Queenstown Memorial Centre from March 27-29.