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OSU students perform live music at the battle of the bands concert

OSU students face off in battle of the bands contest

Thursday, April 27, 2023

Media Contact: Jordan Bishop | Editor | 405-744-7193 |

Wielding their instruments, Oklahoma State University students took the stage for this semester’s battle of the bands contest in the Seretean Center for the Performing Arts Concert Hall on April 20.

The contest, affectionately titled ABC, (anything but classical), allowed students within the Greenwood School of Music to showcase their talents and passions for live music. Students are paired together and tasked with coming up with a set list of various songs across the decades of music, along with one original tune. In total, six bands were formed for the concert.

Among the five judges present were First Cowboy Darren Shrum and Anne Greenwood, donor and namesake for the music school.

Dr. Mark Perry, associate professor of ethnomusicology and director of the music industry program, helped organize the event alongside Wayne Bovenschen, associate professor of percussion, and Steven Sanders, associate professor of voice. Perry said that while the ABC is treated like a battle of the bands, it also functions as an end-of-the-semester ensemble in the same way that classical music, jazz and choir do.

“We have lots of different music ensembles at the GSM,” Perry said.  “So, rather than calling it the ABC concert, we treat it like a battle of the bands. So it's basically the capstone of the semester for that ensemble.”

Two categories were up for grabs: best performance and best original song. Head of the Bread won the contest for best performance, while No Clue won for their original song, “The Chase.”

Jessie Fish, a sophomore music industry major, is the vocalist for No Clue. To write the song, she sat down with a journal and a guitar to write the lyrics, later collaborating with her bandmates to come up with the bridge and even a drum solo.

Fish said she is blessed that her band’s hard work paid off. 

Getting to perform a song I wrote with an awesome band was cool enough, but I am so thankful for it to have won best original song,” Fish said. “I had some tough competition, there were some awesome songs performed.”

Perry said with the GSM’s history of organized choral and orchestral programs, it’s nice to have the same opportunities for those interested in non-classical forms of music. 

“It’s very important for the Bachelor of Science in music industry because many of the jobs out there are non-classical jobs,” Perry said. “This is an outlet for all music.”

Story By: Sam Milek |

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