Valley Students Take the Stage for Band Battle During Carbondale Dandelion Day
Fifteen bands from Roaring Fork Valley elementary, middle and high schools are ready to take the stage and show off their musical chops on Saturday, May 11, as Jazz Aspen Snowmass presents the 2013 Band Battle in Carbondale's Sopris Park.
Now in its 15th year, the annual battle of the bands has taken place in a variety of forms. It used to be hosted in Basalt, but has since moved to Carbondale and is part of the town's Dandelion Day, Carbondale's annual springtime sustainability festival that acknowledges the designation of the town's official flower after a group of concerned citizens successfully lobbied to end the spraying of herbicide on its parks and playgrounds.
In 2009, Jazz Aspen Snowmass (JAS) also adopted the event under its organization.
“The Band Battle competition is one of JAS' favorite education events of the year,” says JAS President Jim Horowitz. “It's exciting to see the level of talent and enthusiasm these young musicians bring to the stage.”
In addition to bragging rights for the next year, the winners of the Band Battle will also receive free recording time at Great Divide Recording Studios in Aspen.
“The battle of the bands started out as more of a showcase for school band programs, but it's really become an outlet for garage-band kids that aren't in the programs, necessarily,” Chris Bank, the JAS In-Schools director and Band Battle organizer, told Time Out last year. “We were just amazed when we would go back to school in the beginning of the year, about how many kids were already talking about this event.”
With continually shrinking school budgets, extracurricular music outlets have become increasingly important. Local education initiatives are a priority for Jazz Aspen Snowmass — which commits more than $100,000 annually to local schools and has generated nearly $6 million dollars since 1996 to support its multifaceted music education programs.
“Band Battle certainly opens up avenues that weren't there for students,” Bank says. “I would have to think that this has had some long-lasting effects.”
He cites hearing from former students who are now sound engineers, music majors, playing in symphonies and are recording artists. Locally, he says that Carbondale, Basalt and Glenwood now have guitar classes in their curriculum, and that these sometimes have higher enrollment than the band class. Bank was the Roaring Fork School District band director for many years.
Dandelion Day festivities kick off at 9 a.m. with free yoga in the learning tent, followed by the Parade of Species at 10 a.m., where students and others dress as their favorite species, real or imaginary. Other events include a compost judging, a scavenger hunt, a seed and plant swap, tree planting demonstration, river clean-up, slow bike race, live music, a beer tent and more.
2013 Band Battle Schedule
1 p.m. CMS Flex Band CMS
1:15 p.m. Pete's Whistle RFHS
1:30 p.m. Karyme Meixueiro GSHS
1:45 p.m. Izzi Mata RFHS
2 p.m. The Brink AMS/Waldorf/BMS
2:15 p.m. Boom Town AMS/ACD
2:30 p.m. Booyah Brothers BMS
2:45 p.m. Flores Bros. GSHS
3 p.m. The Dudes GSMS
3:15 p.m. Big Dog & the Midnite Badgers RFHS/CRMS
3:30 p.m. Cause of Death GSHS
3:45 p.m. The No Joes RFHS/CRMS/GSHS
4 p.m. Beyond Prophecies RFHS
4:20 p.m. Wall of the Fallen RHS
4:40 p.m. Alpha Centauri AHS
Band Battle '13
Presented by Jazz Aspen Snowmass
Saturday, May 11, 1-5 p.m.
Sopris Park, Carbondale