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The Stray's Battle of the Bands is back for Season III! 

Applications are open now and close Dec 1st.


Get ready for the most exciting musical showdown of the year! The Stray is thrilled to announce Season III of our "Battle of the Bands" event, taking place this coming March. Every Saturday night, up to five talented bands will compete for a chance to shine in the finals on March 30, where they will have the opportunity to showcase their full-length set. Finalists will be determined through a combination of popular votes and the discerning judgment of a guest panel of local music industry professionals. These judges have been carefully selected for their extensive experience and invaluable contributions to the local music scene. 

What's at stake? Larger cash prizes than ever before, with the top four bands receiving significant rewards: 1st place takes home $600, 2nd place receives $300, and 3rd and 4th place both earn $200. Even the bands that don't make it to the finals will pocket $50 for their performance. Musical diversity is at the heart of our event, and we welcome bands and solo artists from every genre to apply. Previous applicants and competitors from 2022 and 2023 may re-apply (excluding previous finalists).  

Even at Battle of the Bands, we believe collaboration is greater than competition. The ultimate goal of this event is to create an exciting performance opportunity where artists can network, grow, and be paid for their craft! 


Info for Audience: 

Get ready to secure your seats! Tickets will be available for purchase in late January. For the Final's Night, tickets will go on sale once all the finalists have been determined. Don't wait too long to buy your tickets! In Season II (March 2023), tickets for the finals were completely sold out within a mere 6 minutes of becoming available! 


Info for Bands: 

Applications for the competition open in mid-October and will remain open until December 1st. Don't miss your chance to be a part of this electrifying musical experience! 


What's New in Season III: 

We're delighted to announce some exciting updates for this year's event. We've expanded the competition by adding an extra opening round night, allowing us to accommodate up to 20 talented competitors. Additionally, we've increased the payouts for our performers, making it even more rewarding to participate! 


Previous Finalists: 

Our previous years' finalists have set the bar high with their incredible performances: 

Season I: 

  • Whorled (Winner) 

  • Daisybox 

  • Epitones 

Season II: 

  • Short Panic (Winner) 

  • Pocket Watch 

  • Cordero 


Previous Judges Include: 

  • John Sinkevics (Local Spins) 

  • Elle Lively (Michigan Music Alliance, Crooked Tree Creative, The Listening Room) 

  • Andrea "SuperDre" Wallace (OPNR) 

  • Jake Rye (Social Recording Company, Sanctus Reel) 

  • Robby Fisher (Dogtown Studios) 

  • Shelby Schneider (WYCE, GRCMC) 

  • Yolonda Lavender (Soul Artistry LLC, Performing Artist through Truth Tone Records) 


Previous Giveaways: 

  • Professional Band Photoshoot on the Night of The Finals, courtesy of The Stray 

  • Discounts on recording time at Planet Sunday Studio 

  • Artist Interviews/Articles on WYCE and WKTV Journal 

  • Discounts/Giveaways on Photography and Recording Sessions at Dogtown Studios 

  • Professional Artist Consulting Sessions from Soul Artistry LLC 


Stay tuned for updates and get ready for a month of unforgettable musical performances in March. We can't wait to hear the diversity of sound and talent in The Stray's third Battle of the Bands!

Interested in Sponsoring? 

We're open to financial contributions and giveaways like studio time, music shop discounts, and gear. Your contribution will get your logo on outgoing promotional materials, and we give detailed shoutouts from the stage, introducing your business to hundreds of music fans and dozens of hardworking musicians. Drop us a message to discuss if it's a fit for you. 

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