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The Shield Online

The Student News Site of McCallum High School

The Shield Online

The Student News Site of McCallum High School

The Shield Online

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Battling with the beat

Student bands face off at second annual competition, “Battle of the Bands”

Sophomore Noah Wilson sings with his band at Battle of the Bands, an annual fundraiser for the classical guitar program. Photos by Aiden Foster.

Bands with students currently going to McCallum as well as alumni performed in the fine arts theatre Dec. 5 to see who rocked the hardest at the annual Battle of the Bands.

After all bands had performed, The Mr. Clark Experience and Moxxy both got first place, followed by Headworm in second. The first place winners get the amazing opportunity to headline at Stubbs BBQ, a venue on Red River street downtown Jan. 14.

“We formed our band because we wanted to play for Battle of the Bands last year,” Thomas Magnuson, the guitarist for The Mr. Clark Experience, said. “We didn’t really know if it was going to be a band, or if it was just going to be a one time thing.”

hair-flipFormed by an idea, The Mr. Clark Experience has become popular among McCallum students, with the release of its EP, “Experience,” on Bandcamp. Though it didn’t exactly expect a constant band after their first performance, it rages on to this day.

“Even if you’re not sure you could commit to a full band,” Magnuson said, “I think if you know other people who like the same kind of music as you, or even if they don’t, its nice to be able to play together and have that experience.”

Battle of the Bands represented music from the entire spectrum of genres, from psychedelic rock, like The Mr. Clark Experience and The Death Aquatics, to punk/metal, like Headworm and The Clumps.

“I always wanted to write my own music, but I was really bad at it,” Matthew Ferguson, the guitarist for Headworm, said. “Then one day I just started writing this riff that kind of sounded like Hell’s Black Intelligencer (a metal band, including one of Ferguson’s role models Griffin Meinbresse, a McCallum alumni) and I realized it wasn’t too hard.”

Though Ferguson said he wants to improve for the band’s next performance, Headworm was a hit at Battle of the Bands, achieving second place at its debut performance.

“The cards we were dealt for our first performance were not so good,” Ferguson said. “At least I know the next one can’t be worse, and people still liked us, because we got second.”

Headworm now has raw, uncut “iPhone demos” available on Bandcamp. After Battle of the Bands, Headworm has gotten offers for playing shows along with The Clumps and other punk bands with McCallum roots.

“It looks like it’s going to be difficult, and not worth it,” Ferguson said, “but if you just keep trying, the right musicians will come. You’ll find a way. If you want to make music, just keep trying, and it’ll happen.”


Winning bands share sample tracks

1st place –  The Mr. Clark Experience:

Nate Zivin, Alex Lew, Thomas Magnuson, Lili Hickman, Elliot Rogers

[bandcamp width=100% height=42 album=1976718057 size=small bgcol=ffffff linkcol=0687f5 track=555446387]

1st place – Moxxy:

Drew Carter, Nate Zivin, Lev Baker, Hunter Thornton, Sam Ahmadi

2nd place – Headworm:

Matthew Ferguson, Rowan Smoot, Noah Wilson, Nate Sanford

[bandcamp width=100% height=42 track=148192864 size=small bgcol=ffffff linkcol=0687f5]

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Battling with the beat