Click play to hear a song about being warned about playing “Battle of the Bands” by The Blisterz. Title: BOTB (We Should Have Listened To Our Friend Gus)
So you start a band in your basement or garage and after a few months you have a solid set list that you are ready to expose to the masses. You see an advertisement about a “Battle of the Bands” or in some cases you are contacted online through your band page by a “promoter” asking you to participate in such an event. You think wow, we will finally get some exposure and possibly win some recording time or whatever it is they are luring you in with.
Should you really enter into a Battle of the Bands contest?
Well if you ask any accomplished musician most likely the response will be “hell no”, but if you are still eager to play and this seems like a good opportunity to get your music heard; what do you do?
Well first you should research the company or organization that is hosting the battle.
If you can find feedback from other bands that have participated with them in the past that would be helpful as well. Just be sure to recognize if the bands are only bitching about it because they are sore losers. It’s always easier to blame someone else for your own shortcomings.
I was in a band once that actually won a battle of the bands, or so we thought. Apparently, that was just the first round of the battle and we had to come back at a later date to compete again. There was no mention ever that this was a first round battle; we were under the impression that we just won hours of valuable studio time. We had sold tons of tickets, got paid nothing and left with an empty promise that we could win in the next round. There’s no fucking way we’d ever do that again!
Battle of the Bands are not very enjoyable shows to attend either. Put yourself in the position of the people who came out to support you and your band. They have to sit through possibly 15 bands that they have no interest in, before they ever get to hear you play the 2 or 3 songs you are allotted; or maybe you play first but in order to get the vote from the audience, your crowd is expected to stay for the entire show which can last on average 6-8 hours. In a case like this your crowd may leave way before they can officially vote for you.
My band however has had a good experience with a battle that was put together for a charitable cause. All ticket sales went to the charity and the prizes were donated to the bands. Sometimes battles are held and the winner gets to open up for a huge act, these battles could be worth it because if you win, you play in front of thousands of people. Otherwise, if you ask me I wouldn’t do it.
If you do decide to play a Battle of the Bands make sure you have a lot of friends because these battles tend to be popularity contests more than they are competitions based on musical talent.
Written By: Fruntman