“ROCK-OFF 22 TO FEATURE 26 HS ROCK BANDS”

March 13, 2006

“ROCK-OFF 22 TO FEATURE 26 HS ROCK BANDS”

***** for immediate release *****

You hear them coming from your basement, or perhaps your neighbor’s garage. If you’re really lucky, you might hear them at a local club or hall. They are the battalion of young high school rock musicians cranking out original tunes and getting their acts together in hopes of winning $1,000 and being named “Best Young Band in the State of Maine.”

No, it’s not the Jazz Festival or Marching Band competition; this is the 22nd Annual Reindeer Rock-Off, the long-running popular musical event that has been an influential and inspirational part of many hometown careers. It all takes place at McAuley Performing Arts Center in Portland, with three marathon shows on Sunday, April 2nd, Saturday, April 8th, and Sunday, April 9th, all beginning at 2 PM except the 2nd date which starts at 3 PM.

Reindeer Records, a Portland-based indie label, once again presents this 22-year-old event that proudly boasts the slogan, “Making History Creating Choices.” The Rock-Off experience has been a part of many aspiring local young musicians who benefited from the event’s extraordinary exposure and networking opportunities, according to Louis Philippe, RO Executive Producer and President of Reindeer Group, Inc. “Artists such as Howie Day, Jeremiah Freed, Rustic Overtones, Alteria and more all strutted their great abilities on the Rock-Off stage…some won, some didn’t, but they all learned a lot and developed their act for successful results.”

Over 70 bands responded to this year’s competition, slightly more than in previous years. “It’s interesting to see patterns and cycles over the years, it’s like many school groups, when the seniors graduate it might take a few years for the interest to rekindle,” said Philippe. “Plus the current state of the local all-ages music scene is in pretty bad shape,” he noted, adding: “Maine is in serious need of visionary adults who can provide positive reinforcement and support to aspiring young musicians. We need more all-ages clubs that see a higher value in advocacy versus the bar tab…but that’s a different story.”

But getting to the Rock-Off stage is not an easy task. Registration criteria for the Rock-Off is intentionally more challenging and based on general recording industry standards. Each band is judged on numerous elements in three major categories: Live Showcase Performance, Original Material and Marketability. Each category is evaluated by a separate panel of judges. The bands with the top five highest overall scores will make it into the Finals, slated for Sunday, May 7th.

In addition to the prize money, Reindeer will once again award a $1,000 scholarship to one of this year’s musicians who will be pursuing a career in performing arts. Donations to the scholarship program are welcome and can be made on the home page of Reindeer’s website, http://www.reindeergroup.org.

All shows are open to all ages. Tix are $10 per showcase, with special group discounts for youth organizations, and are available from any participating band, or by calling Reindeer at 857-9002 or emailing events@reindeergroup.org. Reindeer Records is part of Reindeer Group Inc., a non-profit 501(c)(3) arts organization. A Rock-Off History can be found at http://www.reindeergroup.org.

This year’s event is being sponsored by MaineToday.com, which carries a full schedule and complete band info, including pictures, bios, and soundclips on its 20 Below website, http://20below.mainetoday.com/show/rockoff/. Other sponsors include Adelphia Cable Channel 9, Five Masks Multi Media, No Hit Videos and Tonezone Recording Studios.

[Complete schedule continues. For individual contact info for band in your coverage area, please feel free to contact us. Thank you.]

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ROCK-OFF 22 LIVE SHOWCASE SCHEDULE
(Each band gets 20 minutes of stage time)

SHOWCASE #1: SUNDAY, APRIL 2, 2 PM

PHUNKADELIKA (Maranacook Community School / CVA)
COUNTER PRODUCTIVE (Deering HS)
THE PROJECT (Greely HS)
THE IRKSOME MOTHER ORCHESTRA (Erskine Academy)
GLORIA RED (Biddeford HS / Thornton Academy)
WIZORD & SHAZAM PRESENT… (Erskine Academy)
PORK (Yarmouth / Falmouth HS)
FORCE IT DOWN (Gray-New Gloucester HS)
BAYROOTS (Greely HS)

SHOWCASE #2: SATURDAY, APRIL 3, 3 PM

HILLCREST DRIVE (Ellsworth HS)
AIMLESS DRIVE (Scarborough HS)
THE MASTERPLAN (Waynflete / Cape Elizabeth HS)
TONEDEAF3 (Deering HS)
QUIET CONFORMIST (Freeport HS)
BETTER THAN (Gray-New Gloucester HS)
DELUXE MOSES (Sacopee Valley HS)
P, D & J (Maranacook HS)

SHOWCASE #3: SUNDAY, APRIL 9, 2 PM

KELSO (Windham HS)
MILE ZERO (Thornton Academy)
THE SHAMS (Homeschooled)
MODERN SYNDROME (St. Joseph’s School)
FREE REFILLS (Cape Elizabeth, Wayneflete)
ROCKSMYTHE (York HS)
WAITING ON IAN (Georges Valley HS)
PASSING LANE (Deering HS / Portland HS / Waynflete)
NORWOOD (Deering HS)

GUEST BAND: Reindeer Recording Artist PATTYCAKE 600

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