Competitors now comrades

Eight bands competed for top honors at Northern Kentucky University’s first annual Battle of the Bands event on March 20.

Although the band, Payola, walked away the winner of the battle, everyone benefited from the event.

“It was awesome,” said Lucky 13 guitarist Robbie Gayhart. “Every band that has played here is of high caliber.”

There was a spirit of camaraderie between the bands despite the competition.

The consensus among the bands seemed to be that the event was a landmark for promoting local music.

Payola front man, Randy Steffen, said he hopes that the event will improve original music in Northern Kentucky.

Doug Smith from Brother Baker said the event was great because it “spotlights local talent and lets bands get heard who normally wouldn’t.”

The battle also gave fans an opportunity to hear their favorite bands.

“It’s great to have events on campus because that’s where our target fan base is,” said Fizzgig bassist Dan Schwartz. “[They’re] the people we love to play for and it’s always our favorite crowd.”

The Activities Programming Board hopes to make the event a yearly tradition at NKU.

Event coordinator and APB member Dustin Lewis was surprised at the size and diversity of the crowd.

“We’ve had a lot of high school students, which is good exposure,” he said. “Tonight would have been an excellent recruiting tool.”

The crowd topped out at 400 people, including band members. The APB was pleased with the turnout and expects an even larger crowd for April’s Nappy Roots concert where Payola will serve as opening act.

“We feel pretty confident that Nappy Roots will be a big turnout,” Lewis said.