Bringing down the barn

Battle of Bands contest to showcase local talent

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Four teenage boys got together in seventh grade and decided to start a band called Stonewall.

Five years later, three of the original members remain, and the metal band, now under the name Blacklist, keeps playing.

Moffat County High School juniors Bryon Smith, Will Schneegas and Aaron Burl have kept the band going. Brian Ghiradelli recently joined Blacklist, making a complete group ready to compete in Friday's Grand Olde West Days Battle of the Bands.

The group will play covers of songs by artists such as AC/DC, Metallica and Ozzy Osborne. The members also are considering debuting some of their own songs.

"It's good thing," said Smith, a guitarist, about the first Craig community event. "It gives us something else to play. There's not a whole lot of places you can play metal."

The group has performed at other Battle of the Bands, such as one in Steamboat Springs last weekend and one held at the high school recently. During their freshman year, group members took first in that one, which they are hoping to do again Friday. If they do, they'll come away with $250.

The event's organizer, Jonny Sherman, said he wanted to give the contestants an incentive to participate, as well as a venue for the music they might otherwise not be able to play in public.

"I think music is a great way for kids to release any anxieties or emotions in a positive way," he said. "They need an outlet for that. I'm just trying to facilitate that."

With the many GOWD activities planned, Sherman wanted to give area youths an event that appealed to them. And he wanted to make the show appropriate for them, as well.

The all-ages show is alcohol-free and starts at 6 p.m. in the Moffat County Fairgrounds barn. Sherman expects bands to wrap up at about midnight.

Rain or shine, the show is "five bands for five bucks." Other acts include Turn the Tables and Shotties, No Blitz. Sherman still is booking the other groups.

But attendees also get a bonus for the five bucks. Twelve to Midnight, best known for The WB's "One Tree Hill" theme song, will close the show and act as the judges for the Battle of the Bands.

Sherman is excited for GOWD to start, opening at 5 p.m. Thursday with the Brown's Amusements carnival at the fairgrounds. And he thinks the festival is good for the community.

"It seems like it brings a lot of people out and brings them together," he said.

For more information about the Battle of the Bands, contact Sherman at Nimrod's Clothing at 824-0235.

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