Teen Battle of the Bands in Winter Park
August 29, 2008
Madison Lutz may just be an eighth grader at East Grand Middle School, but she and other local and regional artists are already making names for themselves in the musical world. She and several other young musicians are tuning up their performances for the first-ever High Altitude Battle of the Bands and Boards, sponsored by the Winter Park/Fraser Valley Chamber of Commerce, Blues in the School and the Sky-Hi Daily News.
Competing bands for the “Best Band Above 7,000 Feet” title are:
– Modern and classic rock band Yes We’re Open of Silverthorne (Will Newton and Travis Crain on guitar, Shane Wertz on bass, Todd Hummer on drums, and Kiernyn Tarafa on guitar and vocals) playing 10:30 to 11 a.m.
– Metal, classic and hard rock band Remnants of a Riddle of Edwards/Eagle (Griffin Turnipseed on vocals, Aaron Szindler on lead guitar and backing vocals, Teddy Gillis on bass and J.T. Schmitt on drums) 11:15 to 11:45 a.m.
– Rock, indie, classic rock and alternative band The Neighborhood Heroes of Granby/Fraser (Daniel Rondeau on vocals and rhythm guitar, Simon Nicol on drums, Lucas Henderson on piano, synthesizer and lead guitar and Ben Jeewtt on bass) noon to 12:30 p.m.
– Blues and rock band The Runaways, of Winter Park, (Keenan Drummond on tenor sax, Sean Kerber on bass, Zack Thorpe on lead guitar, and Noah Ralph on drums) 12:45 to 1:15 p.m.
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– Rock/experimental jam Granby band Fat Amber (Caleb on guitar, Bradley Hilton on guitar/vocals, Brett on bass/vocals, and Josh on drums) 1:30 to 2 p.m.
– And progressive/alternative rock band A Sight Unseen, of Summit County, (Bryce Silianoff on guitar/vocals, Keegan Castor on drums, and Keynan Roggash on bass) finishes up the competition part of the event 2:15 to 2:45 p.m.
Emcee is John Catt and musical guest judges are “DJ Normski” Larry Norman, musician Ali Grayson, drummer Patrick Brower (of Mango Chutney fame), accomplished pianist Brad Pregeant, and the members of headlining band Runnin’ Wild. They will judge bands on stage presence, technical performance, originality and knowledge of material.
As skateboarders continue to show their stuff at the skatepark, headlining band Runnin’ Wild will round out the musical challenge with a special performance 3 to 4 p.m. followed by announcement of the winners who will take the stage for a 10-minute encore piece.
As a special treat, Runnin’ Wild (Hunter Roberts, Tony Pacello, and Jeff Jani) will welcome Lutz to their stage for a few songs.
Lutz, who wants to pursue music down the road, first ran into the band when Roberts, Pacello and Jani were part of the 103.5 The Fox School of Rock band about four years ago. She sang soprano while they performed for the local radio program and all are eager to work together again.
“It’s been so much fun,” she said of singing with Runnin’ Wild. “There are really good musicians in both bands and you kind of forget about the people out there and have fun with it.”
Young singers interested in getting into the scene are encouraged to “Follow your dreams and do the best you can,” Lutz said. “Even if you’ve failed, try again. Start small and grow in the process.”