The Snaz band will be the opening act for the fierce competition expected between the six area youth bands playing in Youth Services’ Battle of the Bands. Come check it out at the River Garden on Friday, November 6, during Brattleboro’s Gallery Walk night, from 7 to 10 p.m.!
The public is encouraged to attend and vote for their favorite group with their applause. Competing bands to date are: Negative Space, The Regulars, Wicked Thirsty, Raspberry Jam, Sometime Sunday, and Nomad vs. Settler. Opening the event will be a performance by the indie-rock band Snaz, which helped get their start as winners of the Battle of the Bands in 2012.
Negative Space is a Brattleboro, VT-based band started a year ago playing self-described as electronic-alternative-grunge music. They have already released their first album on-line. The Regulars, an alternative band from Marlboro, VT feature some of the youngest competitors. Wicked Thirsty is an alternative rock duo from Hindsdale, NH which plays “slightly heavy, slightly indie, slightly progressive music.” Raspberry Jam from Turners Falls and Greenfield, MA will showcase a wide variety of musical tastes, from ska to metal to alternative.
Sometime Sunday, with band members from Keene, NH, Brattleboro and Townshend, VT is “a powerhouse of funky beats, beautiful vocals and tasty guitar hooks,” according to their promotional materials. Nomad vs. Settler from Brattleboro, VT describes their music as “super fresh, all original, 100% organic”. They claim that their collaboration on “distinctive, often wonderfully complex songs” creates a sound that sets them apart from “your average garage band.”
Masters of Ceremonies will be Mavis Eaton, 17 and Zack James, 15, two members from the local teen indie-rock group Snaz, that has built a significant following regionally, nominated last year as Best New Act by the New England Music Awards and finalists on NPR’s Studio 360 High School Battle of the Bands.
Judging the Battle are musicians Aaron Chesley, Lisa McCormick, Spencer Crispe, and youth judges Dharma Ramirez and Nina Cates.
Aaron Chesley is owner of Headroom Stages, the manager at Maple Leaf Music, music teacher at The Greenwood School and a veteran of the area music scene. Acoustic singer-songwriter Lisa McCormick described her songs from her debut album, Right Now, as “sketches of our tiny inch of history, with their unique spin on love and sex, science and culture and heroes.” McCormick is also a celebrated on-line guitar instructor. Local attorney Spencer Crispe played in bands for 15 years and was in the first Vermont underground band to tour in Europe and Japan. An avid concert-goer, Crispe has already listened to in excess of 1,000 live concerts.
The youth judges are the Snaz’s singer and song-writer, Dharma Ramirez, age 17 and Nina Cates, aged16, the bass player. Their music was recently described by the Burlington Free Press as possessing “strong hooks and lyrics that explore teenage turmoil in refreshing ways.”
First prize for Youth Services’ Battle of the Bands is a full day (up to 10 hours) of professional recording time donated by Guilford Sound, valued at $1500. A residential recording studio retreat on 300 private acres in Guilford, Vermont, the high-tech studio is owned by sound engineer David Snyder. Donated by Pure Green Tees, the 1st place winners will also receive a dozen custom-designed T-shirts of their band logo.
Second prize is two-hour rehearsal and band coaching session at Headroom Stages, a local musical venue at 17 Elliot Street in Brattleboro, VT.
Third prize is two private vocal lessons with Samirah Evans, a professional jazz and blues vocalist who performs regionally.
“The Battle of the Bands is an exciting event for everyone in the region. Please come help cheer on the budding young artists in the area,” said Russell Bradbury-Carlin, Youth Services Executive Director. “This event celebrates the entrepreneurial nature of young musicians forming bands and expressing their musical inspiration,” he explained.
“What better way to celebrate youth than to support them as they take steps to make a living out of doing something they love,” stated Bradbury-Carlin. “Some will succeed, and for those who don’t, they will gain experience that will help them to be successful in other careers they enter,” he said.
The cover charge is $4 and includes refreshments and many door prizes. This event is underwritten by Supreme Fitness, Hazel Restaurant and Whetstone Station Restaurant. For more information, contact Youth Services at (802) 257-0361 or visit wwwyouthservicesinc.org