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Battle of the Bands will raise funds for music education

Aspen Times Staff Report

The stage has been set for Basalt to host a Battle of the Bands event in May to raise funds for the music programs of local schools.

The event is being organized by local musicians Christopher “Biff” Phillips and Dan “Pastor Mustard” Sadowsky. There are no booster clubs to raise money for music departments like there are for athletics, noted Sadowsky, so this event was created as a way to assist the underfunded programs.

“We want to raise money and give it away,” he said.

The Battle of the Bands image raises visions of super-loud, grunge rockers rattling windows throughout town, but that’s not what the organizers have in mind. All types of bands will be invited to compete, from garage rock bands to concert bands, wind ensembles, a cappella groups and even polka bands, according to Biff. Some local and national professionals will make surprise appearances throughout the event, he said.

There will be 18 slots of 20 minutes each for different acts to fill from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, May 8. The “battle” will be held at Lion’s Park next to Basalt Town Hall and the red caboose.

Admission will be free, though contributions will be encouraged. Sadowsky and Biff also are creating a nonprofit, called Battle of the Bands Foundation, to serve as a “conduit” for getting the funds from the event to the schools.

Organizers and parents will also solicit prizes and cash donations from businesses and individuals from throughout the valley. “There’s no motivation like band moms,” said Biff.

All participating schools will share the net proceeds. Winning bands in various categories will also receive special awards.

The Basalt Town Council Tuesday night approved use of Lion’s Park and some staff assistance for the event. May 15 was reserved as a rain date.


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