We’ve already told you that the beloved Road To Bonnaroo is over. But, a revamped contest titled Road To Roo pits sixteen local bands against each other for the chance to win a spot to play Bonnaroo this year. The competition consists of five battle-of-the-bands style events which will take place at multiple venues across Nashville, ultimately resulting in one winner from Tennessee (unlike three winners from previous years) to earn the coveted spot. Last week, Lightning 100 announced the 16 bands selected to compete in this year’s Nashville competition, and the first event will include: OJR, CAPPA, Shane Piasecki, KiND, Roots Of A Rebellion, B R U N S, Heavy Sole, and Jess Nolan. The first round takes place tonight (March 3) at Acme Feed & Seed.
The specifics of this competition are slightly different for the new competition. Four winning acts will be picked tonight, and four additional acts will be selected from the second preliminary round on March 10 at Acme. The eight advancing winners will play one of two Nashville semifinals, which will feature four bands each, on March 16 at Exit/In and on March 22 at The Basement East. Two winners will be selected from each of the semifinal events to perform in the Nashville finals at 3rd & Lindsley on March 31. The Nashville winner will then face off with other Tennessee regional winners in the State Finals at Mercy Lounge on April 4. Similar to the previous format from Road To Bonnaroo, the winners will be selected by a combination of fan and judge voting.
Got all that? We know it can get a little confusing, but just to re-iterate, all you need to know right now is the contest starts tonight at Acme Feed & Seed, and the eight band bill is being presented to you free of charge! Read on for more info on the performers, and get to Acme on time to be part of the voting process. Hope to see you there!
Local (via Toledo, OH) and No Country Presents alum Shane Piasecki has built a strong following in Australia of all places, but now he’s ready to build a name for himself state side. After giging around town and playing various places regionally in the US in support of his LP Set You Free, Shane has already made his prescience felt in Music City. Check out his latest music video for the infectious track “Jackie O” below, and experience him live at the contest.
Longtime friend of the blog Carla Cappa, or just CAPPA when she’s performing, is a rising Music City star in the realm of indie synth-pop. The Belmont grad had a fairly massive 2015, jumpstarting her solo career with her debut self-titled EP, releasing a TLC cover that went viral (see below), and chalking up over a million streams of her work, which charted her on popular streaming services like Spotify and Hype Machine. The sky seems to be the limit for her in 2016, so be at Acme tonight, and you can always say you saw her before she was a mega-star.
Oliver John-Rodgers’ project OJR — which is just his initials, if you hadn’t noticed — is best described as country music on acid. His music includes wonderful elements of folk with psych-rock mixed in too, and it’s all drenched in just the right amount of fuzz. Plus, we couldn’t be happier to see another band on this line up who’s played in our Acme showcase. His most recent effort, entitled Nashville Demos, should be added to your playlists immediately, and whatever you do, go see him live!
ROOTS OF A REBELLION
A cornerstone of the ever growing Tennessee reggae movement, Roots of a Rebellion have been at it for a while now, and we must say we’ve enjoyed watching them grow and improve as they hone their island influenced sounds. ROAR was voted best local band in Scene readers’ poll 2015, so it’s safe to say they’ll be one of the more seasoned bands on this bill. Having toured the country in the warm-up spot for other slightly more high profile bands like Rebelution, NEEDTOBREATHE, Slightly Stoopid, moe., Trombone Shorty, North Mississippi Allstars and The Wailers certainly helps too. These dudes are Roo ready.
Just the type of electro pop we enjoy vibing to, KiND have been steadily on the rise since the release of their latest record Eunoia over the summer. Formerly VITEK, the band choose a new name with the new LP, and even nabbed some national press in a Nash-centric article that appeared on Vice’s Noisey music blog. Check out their super stripped down (in more ways than one) video for “Run Wild” below, and be sure to watch them plug in tonight.
B R U N S
Americana folk/rock three piece B R U N S is an outfit we’ve been hearing a lot about, and look forward to seeing put it down live. After finding notable fame with the band Churchill, Tim Bruns tried to quit the music business, working odd jobs and occasionally writing songs for other people; but, in the end, he’s found his way to Music City, and linked up with Ryan Harris Brown and Tom Whall to form this new(ish) project that is worth a listen. Check out their self-titled EP here, and if you like what you hear, give them your vote.
East Nashville Underground endorsed rock ’n’ roll two piece, Heavy Sole are adding some serious kick ass to this massive line-up. The duo of Dale Harper and Nick Brownell are stepping out of the box of the traditional modern duo (think The White Stripes, The Black Keys, Black Pistol Fire), and their raucous live shows have earned them a lot of regional buzz. Enjoy their antics when they light up the stage for their shot at a spot performing on The Farm.
Pop/R&B songstress Jess Nolan adds some wonderful flavor to an already incredibly diverse bill. Incorporating brass and jazz elements with her amazing work on the keys is the just the type of thing we could see ourselves lounging out too in the shade of a smaller stage at Bonnaroo. Have a taste below, and give her some love when you see her perform tonight.
Shane Piasecki, CAPPA, OJR, Roots of a Rebellion, KiND, B R U N S, Heavy Sole, Jess Nolan will perform TONIGHT (Thursday March 3) at Acme Feed & Seed. The show is 21+, music begins at 7 p.m., and it’s totally FREE!