NYS Music’s March Madness 2021: The Finals

What the f*ck is up Denny’s? The Finals are here. NYS Music’s March Madness is about to get rowdy. One on one with Baked Shrimp, Long Island against Organ Fairchild, Buffalo – These bands are ready, and hungry, for the NYS March Madness crown.

Since 2015, New York State Music has crafted a March Madness bracket delving into the musical harbors of our great state. As fans and musicians ourselves, we spotlight the great talent across New York in friendly competition and discovery. Its fury never loses sight of the underdog, a headliner’s humble beginnings, new musical discovery and rolling with the punches in our ever-changing industry.



Check out more Jamcast on NYS Music after the final four

JamCast is a streaming platform that provides a unique experience using live, pre-recorded, archived audio & video performances, podcasting, vlogs, blogs, and more. JamCast has been centered around creating a digital network for musicians, promoters, and venues. It was designed to serve as a resource for all facets of the music industry. By offering weekly series, digital events, festivals, podcasts, archives, and more. An online resource and database for all music industry professionals.

March Madness 2021 Balbert Marketing Region:

Baked Shrimp – Long Island, New York.

Welcome to the Finals.

Jared Cowen – Guitar/Vox – Scott Reill – Bass/Vox  – Jager Soss – Drums/Vox

“An impressive musical and technical feat from start to finish. The opening track, “The Vision That I Can See,” is a jaw-dropping epic that really showcases the prowess of this band” – Baked Shrimp ‘Bubble Suit’

“Pig Hearts and Mechanical Parts” was released March 12, and is the single off of Baked Shrimp‘s second studio album Conscious, set for release on March 26th, 2021. The new single features Nick Rufolo on saxophone, trumpet, and keyboards. The track also features Jager Soss on percussion. 

Chuck DeFilippo: What does New York State Music mean to you?

Baked Shrimp:

New York is home to us, always has been and always will be.

When we’re not playing  Long Island we’re in Albany or Syracuse or New Paltz, and all around the state. We’ve  met so many amazing musicians and people from all over this state that have a real  passion for what they’re doing. Anytime we revisit a city in New York we always know  we can count on seeing a bunch of familiar faces who we’ve met on the road and have  become friends with over time. We’re lucky enough to be able to host our first multi night, multi-band outdoor music event in our home state this Summer (LonCon), and we  just can’t wait to see so many of our close friends come from their individual parts of the  state and meet in one central location. It’s going to be two incredible nights for the New  York Music community. 

CD: Any bands or new listening discovered from NYS Music March Madness series?

Oh man well we have to give a shout out to all of our friends in Glass Pony, Specialists,  Hilltop, and Ampevene, all who we’ve played with and wish all of them could have won  the competition. Check each one of these out if you haven’t yet. 

CD: Favorite COVID activity, hobby. Since you have all this free time not gigging?

Baked Shrimp actually had a busy COVID year. When things were really bad and  locked down from March through June of last year, we recorded and released “Bubble Suit,” which was all done from our own individual bedrooms and cars. Self-recorded,  produced, everything, so that was a huge undertaking. Then when were able to get  back in the studio we finished up the Conscious sessions from Summer through Fall.

And mid-December through mid-January we did some intense practices 20+ hours per week just working on listening exercises, new material, vocal warmups, and also  preparing for the Live for Lon stream, which was probably the biggest task as a band we ever took on by ourselves. So we found ways through all the mayhem going on to still  play music together whether if it’s in the same room with masks on or sending files back  and forth to one another over Google Drive. 

March Madness 2021 Lark Hall Region: Albany’s mid-size music venue.

Organ Fairchild – Buffalo, New York.

Welcome to the Finals.

Joe Bellanti – organ, keys – Corey Kertzie – drums – Dave Ruch – guitar 

Organ Fairchild is a musical party that won’t quit. Take your old-school organ trio (organ, guitar and drums), add dance-heavy grooves and adventurous jamming, and shake vigorously. Enjoy all night long. 

“Jan. 2021 marks the release of single, “Seepin’,” from long-time Buffalo jam band veterans Organ Fairchild. Members have a history on the jam scene dating back 40 years.”

Chuck DeFilippo: What does New York State Music mean to you?

Joe Bellanti: NYS Music – the Buffalo scene in particular – means the world to me – some of my greatest moments have come from being a part of it – certainly my very best friends. Too many incredible moments to even try to pick out one or 2 of the best.

Interesting question, as one of the other “hats” I wear as a full-time musician and performer is researching and performing old 19th-century traditional music from New York State! So NYS Music means a lot of different things to me, but in terms of the current music community, we are very fortunate here in Buffalo to have a rabid fan base of live music lovers who always come out to support our shows. The level of musicianship here if off the charts as well, and pretty much everyone involved in the local music scene is really supportive of each other. It’s a great place to be.

Dave Ruch – Guitar

LISTEN to Organ Fairchild’s debut single below, from the forthcoming May 2021 album release! Mastered by Alan Evans of Soulive.

CD: Anything in the works for the band?

Two CDs in 2021 and hopefully a summer and fall of outdoor shows

Also – we will probably hit Denny’s at some point – I’m pretty sure we are the only band in the competition where all the members would qualify for the senior discount

Joe Bellanti

DR: Is Denny’s still even a thing?!

Central New York promoters Creative Concerts bring fans together in the final four

March Madness would not be possible without our sponsors:

Central New York promoters Creative Concerts bring together fans at venues, stretching from Albany to Rochester and Syracuse to Utica. Lark Hall is the soon to open mid-sized venue in Albany that will host bands of all sizes, events and more. If you need to market your show, event, band or brand, Rochester’s Balbert Marketing has you covered. Need merchandise?

Homegrown Eastern New York’s 518 Prints makes quality goods for local, regional and national bands or tours. High Peaks Event Production is a team with years of experience, aiding in all your stage, lighting and sound demands. JamCast proves high quality streams for bands, podcasts and much more. Between these companies, bands will find a great deal of what they need, and support businesses from across New York and the Northeast.

Polls are now closed! Check back on Tuesday, March 30 to find out the winner of NYS Music’s 2021 March Madness!

NYS Music’s March Madness Round One

March Madness Round Two

Round Three: The Sweet 16

Round 4: The Elite 8

Round 5: The Final Four


518 Printsbaked shrimpBalbert MarketingbuffaloHigh Peaks Event Productionmarch madnessorgan fairchildThe Finals