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Musicians compete in Battle of the Bands

| Friday, April 25, 2008

Notre Dame will conclude its week-long AnTostal celebration Saturday at 8 p.m. with a competition between 10 student bands vying for musical superiority at the annual Battle of the Bands.

This year’s Battle of the Bands features the largest number of contestants in competition history.

“Something that really surprised us about this year’s competition was the number of entries we received for the Battle,” said junior Clint Simkins, co-programmer of campus entertainment for the Student Union Board (SUB).

Sixteen bands submitted demo CDs to SUB, the largest number of applicants to date. A panel of SUB committee members and Legends representatives listened to each submission and narrowed the field to the 10 best acts, Simkins said.

“We planned on choosing six to eight bands, but all of the submissions were top quality, so it was hard to even narrow it down to ten,” said sophomore Mallory Davidson, co-programmer of campus entertainment for SUB.

Davidson said SUB wanted to host a wide variety of music types for the Battle.

“Bands were chosen based on the quality of the songs they put on their submission CDs,” Davidson said. “We really tried to make sure that a wide variety of genres were represented by our final selections”

Chosen to battle it out, in order of their appearance Saturday, will be Sound City, The Substitutes, Red Beer, Threat Level Midnight, Space Cowboy, The Super Soul Fighters, Robbie Hazen, M.O.B.B., Vote For Us and From Wall St. to Hollywood, Davidson said.

Each band will play a fifteen-minute set, Simkins said, and ballots cast by audience members will decide the winners.

Simkins said the top three places will be determined by ballot only, emphasizing the importance of students coming out to support their favorite bands on campus.

“SUB is hoping to provide students with some quality entertainment as they watch their fellow classmates duke it out for the fame and glory,” Davidson said. “But we also aim to provide the bands with the opportunity to play a live show at Legends, which has been the host to many successful artists.”

One competitor, senior Robbie Hazen, acknowledged the importance of getting to play at a venue like Legends.

“Battle of the Bands is a great opportunity to play in front of a large crowd on a big stage,” Hazen said. “It also allows you the opportunity to collaborate with other musicians on campus.”

Hazen competed in the Battle of the Bands the past several years and said he’s looking forward to giving a unique performance this year.

Winners will be awarded at the end of the show with first place winning a $200 gift certificate to Guitar Center, a Mishawaka music store. Second and third place will win $100 and $50 gift certificates, respectively.

Perhaps more important to the musicians than the prize money are the bragging rights.

“All the bands are really talented but everyone wants to take first place,” Hazen said.

Admission is free for all Notre Dame, St. Mary’s and Holy Cross College students.