On March 26, more than 150 students filled the Student Center Auditorium for Battle of the Bands 2013. Four bands participated: The Sauceman and the Gringos, Raijene Murchison’s Band, Cucumber Slices, and Honey Smacks.
The Honey Smacks, consisting of Mike Maynard, Tyler Oates, Steven Rodriguez, Nathan Mann, and Stephen Taylor, took home first prize—and a $200 dollar check.
“All the bands were fantastic and I’m really excited we won. Our band kind of came together after we were randomly playing together,” said guitarist and vocalist Maynard of the Honey Smacks.
The Honey Smacks won over the crowd by playing Hot Chelle Rae’s “Tonight Tonight” and a unique mash up titled “Best of 2012.”
Anita Peete and Leonard Latouche hosted the event and introduced each act. After each set, the judges—Professor Montague Williams, Professor Nancy Ross, and alumna Ketura Moise—offered their feedback.
Each band was allotted 10 minutes; most bands performed two songs. After their first song, Rodriguez from the Honey Smacks explained their unusual name. He told the audience that when the group was trying to figure out a name, Maynard had a box of Honey Smacks on his desk, and there came the result.
Sauceman (Shanon Munoz) and the Gringos (Dan Cantrell and Charles Brecht) started the show with “Should I Stay Or Should I Go” by The Clash and “Blitzkrieg Bop” by The Ramones.
“Dan, you were really jammin’,” said judge Moise, commenting on Cantrell’s intense guitar playing.
Raijene Murchison’s Band played flavorful bluegrass, with Murchison and Emma Theis on vocals, Austin Steelman on the banjo, Mike O’Brien on guitar, Payne Ford on bass, Weston Jordan on the washboard, and Rebecca Shaw on the stapler.
Steelman commented that Shaw was playing a stapler because she was “too lazy to play spoons.”
In the middle of their second song, Ford, the student body president, broke out into a rap that excited the crowd.
The Cucumber Slices consisted of Louis Sanclemente, Josh Henry, Jacob Misla, and Mike Doyle. Throughout the set, Sanclemente switched from ukulele to drums to bells, ending on vocals singing a Spanish song while also playing guitar.
After all the bands played their sets, those in attendance were able to cast one vote for their favorite band.
The Honey Smacks won first place, The Sauceman and the Gringos claimed second, Raijene Murchison’s Band came in third, and in fourth place were the Cucumber Slices.