Triangle Corporate Battle of the Bands - McKinney

Triangle Corporate Battle of the Bands

June 3, 2010

The Triangle Corporate Battle of the Bands brought out people from every corner of the Triangle for a night of music that lit up the American Tobacco Campus with the sounds of rock ‘n’ roll, blues, pop and even rap music. The event netted approximately $50,000, bringing the total charitable contributions from all the Battles to over $300,000. The proceeds from this year’s Battle will provide children in the Durham Public Schools with individualized after-school tutoring from Operation Literacy, powered by The Hill Center.

“Thanks to your support, we will be able to tutor 38 elementary school students from Durham Public Schools in the Hill Reading Achievement Program [HillRAP],” said Tim McKenna, The Hill Center’s associate director of marketing and communications. “What a great night! The event was a huge success, and we were so glad to be a part of the festivities. We would like to thank McKinney and all the corporate and individual sponsors who made May 15th a special evening.”

After three attempts to win the Battle, McKinney — host and organizer — took home the top prize. Four other companies competed along with McKinney’s Role Playaz, including Capitol Broadcasting Company (Transmit This: Read-Aid), KeySource Bank (Shades of Blue) and Quintiles (Counting CROs). While the other bands could not fend off the Role Playaz, SportsMEDIA’s Augmented Reality took second place. Special guest performances from American Idol’s Anoop Desai and power trio SWASO rounded out the evening’s performances.

“Our first year, we were the wide-eyed newcomers,” said Gerard Hall, president of SportsMEDIA. “In 2010 we were more polished and really wanted first place after coming in second in 2008.” McKinney may have kept Augmented Reality from the gold, but Hall added, “Look for us next year — we’ll be in it to win it!”

The winning band was determined by both audience voting via text message and special guest judges Dave Rose (Deep South Entertainment), Django Haskins (The Old Ceremony) and Shirlé Hale Koslowski (Free Electric State).

“Seriously, it feels good to win this thing,” said Role Playaz band member Ben Eckerson. “As a group, we put in countless hours for rehearsals, practices and meetings to get to where we are today, and we are having a blast.”

What’s next for the No. 1 corporate band in the Triangle? The McKinney band will travel to Nashville, Tennessee, for the Fortune Battle of the Corporate Bands regional finals on June 19, 2010. If successful, Role Playaz will head to Cleveland to compete in the 2010 finals on October 1-2 at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In 2006, Pants! — also a McKinney band — won first place in the Fortune Battle of the Corporate Bands.

“We’d be honored to bring it home for McKinney once again,” added Eckerson. “McKinney has a great history with the Fortune Battle and we’d love to add our own unique chapter to the books.”