Student musicians prepare for Battle of the Bands competition
Published: Monday, October 14, 2013
Updated: Monday, October 14, 2013 22:10
MSC Town Hall will host Battle of the Bands at 6 p.m. Friday in Rudder Plaza. The annual fall event will feature five bands chosen by a subcommittee of MSC Town Hall, combining different genres of music to produce an entertaining and competitive experience.
Ian Kettelkamp, junior nutritional sciences major and special events executive for Battle of Bands, managed the band entry applications and coordinated and planned the event.
The main requirement for selection, Kettelkamp said, was for at least one member of each band to be an active student at Texas A&M.
Kettelkamp chose bands based on their ability to follow instructions, the quality of their demos and diversity among competitors.
“Performances will be based on staying within the allotted time, smoothness of performance, stage presence, judge opinions on the sound and the crowd appeal,” Kettelkamp said. “[Battle of the Bands] is important because it gets recognition, it gets some attention, it gets [the band’s] name on campus. More attention becomes more opportunities.”
“Abby and the Philharmonics,” “Bad Cat,” “The Lounge,” “Should’ve Been Cowboys” and “King and Nation” are the five bands chosen for the show.
“Bad Cat,” a blend of reggae, funk, hip-hop and punk rock played last year at the Battle of the Bands, snagging second place.
Cameron Schaefer, “Bad Cat” guitarist and senior biomedical engineering major, said their sound is unique and infuses different instruments.
“‘Bad Cat’ originally started out as a reggae band but kind of progressed into something a little bit more,” Schaefer said. “It encompasses some other musical adaptations as well with a very versatile sound. Our horn section — it adds another color to the sound that you won’t see with your standard guitar band.”
Cole Breining, senior industrial distribution major and guitarist and lead vocalist of “The Lounge,” said his band offers a blend of indie rock, classic rock, reggae, jazz and R&B.
“We have a really diverse set, I think it’s something new,” Breining said. “I don’t think people have heard it before. [The music] is slightly against the grain. It’s something that will stand out.”
“King and Nation” will bring to the stage an acoustic set that band members said is slightly different from normal rock.
“We like to make sure our audience has a good time, to make sure that people are watching us on stage,” said Frank Miller, guitarist and junior English major.
Two years ago, “Abby and The Philharmonics” members Abby Siezerling, senior international studies and Spanish major, and Bryant Taylor, senior marketing major, won Battle of the Bands with their former group, “The Jeremiahs.” Battle of the Bands will be the first live performance for “Abby and the Philharmonics.”
Schaefer said he thinks his band has a good chance of winning.
“I’m kind of biased because we were the runners-up last year so I think our chances are pretty good,” Shaefer said. “But I haven’t heard any other bands perform, though, so it’s anyone’s game.”
Most of the artists were simply excited to hear other local bands performing on campus.
“I’m just really looking forward to seeing all the other bands play because I’m sure they’re all good, so it should be a lot of fun,” Miller said.
At the end of the day, the bands really just wanted an opportunity to play their music and get their name out to students on campus.
“I don’t really care [who wins],” said Brenton Kim, senior political science major and member of “Should’ve Been Cowboys.” “The money’s really nice, but actually it’s for publicity. It would be nice for other students to be like, ‘Oh wow, it’s totally not just country here.’”
Admission is free for anyone interested in witnessing the live performances.