Bands rally for annual competition
BASALT – The seventh annual Battle of the Bands returns to Basalt from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday.The friendly seven-hour musical slugfest, a format cribbed from the traditional 1950s model, takes place on the street next to Lions Park on two stages 50 yards apart. A street-fair atmosphere accompanies the free event with food booths, contests, and a silent auction.Battle of the Bands features garage and school-sanctioned bands from elementary through high school competing in 10-minute performances for prize money to support school music programs. Over the last six years, the Battle of the Bands has raised more than $18,000 for valley school music programs. Last year 33 bands from Aspen to Rifle competed.”Our purpose is to help fund local school music programs and cultivate a friendly musical scene among the youth in the valley,” said event coordinator Christopher “Biff” Phillips. “Our efforts help put local pro musicians together with school-aged kids. We’ve created a feeling of community support for kids who express themselves through music.”Bands vie for trophies and prizes by placing in the following categories: Best School Band at High School Level; Best School Band at Middle School Level; Best Garage Band at High School Level; Best Garage Band at Middle School Level; Judges Choice Award; and Best Miscellaneous. Last year, a new Fender electric bass was the prize for Best Bassist.”Lifelong benefits of music in early education have been clearly demonstrated, but music in many schools remains underfunded,” said Phillips, co-founder of sponsor the National Jam Foundation. “The National Jam Foundation wants to make better musical opportunities for school-aged kids, beginning here in the Roaring Fork Valley.”For more information, to volunteer, or to make a tax-deductible contribution to The National Jam Foundation, call Phillips at 927-BIFF or 379-BIFF.To contribute silent auction items or prizes, or to become a sponsor, call Patti Stranahan at 379-5237. Concessionaires and exhibitors looking for booth space, call Liz at the Basalt Chamber of Commerce, 927-4031.
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