Scarlett O’Hara’s hosts Battle of The Bands competition in January

Isabella Pazmino|

This January, musicians who aspire to perform in front of an audience and show off their talent will be able to make their dream come true right here in St. Augustine.

The first Battle of the Bands, organized by Amy Hendrickson, lead vocalist of local band The Prime Directive, will take place at Scarlett O’Hara’s.

Selected bands will perform in front of a panel of four judges, Hendrickson said.

“The panel of judges will be composed of music engineers and sound men, ” Hendrickson said. “Judges will watch the dynamic of a band from a different point of view [since] the judges are not musicians themselves.”

Hendrickson said the panel of judges are not going to be acquainted with any of the band’s work prior to each band’s performance.

“The judges will have no preconceived ideas of what the bands sound like,” she said.

Hendrickson said people who are interested in competing need to submit a demo with at least two songs and a list of the band’s members at Scarlett 0’Hara’s by Dec. 14. She also said selected bands will be notified by Dec.15. She said she and four other people will decide who will enter the competition.

The competition will take place every Thursday of January starting at 8:30 p.m. and ending at 2:00 a.m.  24 bands will compete, eight will perform on the first three weeks and two bands will be selected out of the eight every week. On the final week, six bands will compete and judges will choose the winner, Hendrickson said.

During the first three weeks each band is required to play their original music, Hendrickson said. If selected for the second round, bands may choose to perform a cover song.

Hendrickson said competing bands will have 30 minutes to set up and perform. The bands are required to bring their own instruments.

“Everything will be set, “Hendrickson said. “We will provide the amplifiers and microphones.”

Competing bands can play anything they want as the judges decision will not be affected by which genre each band decides to play.

“It all comes down to how each band performs outside of the genre,” Hendrickson said. “Being in it counts more than being mainstream.”

Hendrickson believes a successful band is characterized by confidence.

“You have to bring it,” she said.

According to Hendrickson, the first prize is $1,000 and four hours of studio time donated by A1A Audio Productions.

Besides these prices, the winning band will also earn a title.

“There will be studio engineers, sound men and other people covering the event so the winning band will also get recognition,” she said.

The winning band will get a live recording of their final performance.

During the event on every Thursday, competing bands from outside St. Augustine may stay at the Days Inn or the Alhambra Inn for half the price. Anybody who mentions the event will also get half off the regular price, Hendrickson said.

Hendrickson said she started this project three months ago. As a singer and guitarist, she said she loves performing and giving others that same chance.

“I like the idea that everybody is happy,” she said. “This project will give people something interesting to do.”

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