And then there were four…. Welcome to the Final Four of NYS Music’s March Madness 2022, featuring up and coming bands from around New York State, all coming to a local music venue near you.
Since 2015, New York State Music has crafted a March Madness friendly competition that spans all the musical harbors of the Empire State. As fans and musicians, the NYS Music team aims to spotlight the great talent found across New York in a friendly contest, bringing broader attention to the next generation of artists and bands on the rise. March Madness 2022 highlights 64 bands and artists you might not know, but should know, as these homegrown talents are making waves through the New York State. Check out Round 4 here.
Enter your email address, get to know the bands, and vote for your favorites below!
Bearsville Theater Region Winner
Fine Grain, a shoegazy punk band from Albany took both the red and blue pills with a Genny and got banned from Trader Joe’s. The girthy tones of this gritty group will remind you of late nights on a stoop in September, your first beer after work, weird questions about your parents cephalopods, and of course, the crushing weight of capitalism.
Fine Grain is currently in the studio at Brunswick Recording, working on new music, and have been incorporating visual projections that sync up to their music, intensifying the experience for fans.
Funk n Waffles Region Winner
Gooseberry is a 4-piece band from Brooklyn, born during the Fall of 2019. Their combination of indie rock and soul is a recipe for a unique sound that Gooseberry delivers in each song. The band consists of Asa Daniels (formerly of Baked Goods) on guitar/vocals, Evin Rossington (drums), Sam Rappaport (keys, vocals), and Will Hammond (bass). The band is a genre-bending alchemy of many disparate elements. They are often referred to as having “two bands in one.” This phenomenon can be attributed to the distinctly different approaches of their two chief songwriters—Asa and Sam.
New on the block, Gooseberry has already begun developing a devoted following in and around New York City, running the full gamut of venues from The Bowery Electric to DROM to house shows across the boroughs, quickly staking their claim in the ever-lively Brooklyn music scene. Fans know they’ll be kept on their toes, as the band moves in and out of genres and styles, always keeping the crowd engaged. Upcoming shows include Thursday, March 24 with Grady Spencer & The Work at Hill Country in NYC, then at Bowery Electric on April 14 and at The Knitting Factory on May 21.
DSP Shows Region Winner
Seize Atlantis has a unique, tight sound fueled by punchy bass, hard-driving percussion, melodic lead guitar, and pronounced moody vocals with meaningful lyrics, a truly dynamic range of soft to heavy Alternative Rock. Formed in 2019 out of Glens Falls, Seize Atlantis is a four-piece band most closely influenced by bands such as Red Hot Chili Peppers and Pearl Jam, providing their own spin on a variety of covers from classic rock to modern pop in addition to their own original music.
Catch them on Friday, March 18 at Mean Max Brew Works in Glens Falls, April 10 at Fitzgerald’s in Fort Edward, and on April 22 at Empire Underground with Under the Den, Bad Mothers, and Sydney Worthley. Watch “The Unstoppable Groove” below.
The Helping Friendly Hemp Company Region Winner
HANZOLO won the EQX Battle of the Bands and opened Albany’s annual Pearlpalooza music festival in 2021. They have opened for bands like Lawrence, Wild Belle, and *repeat repeat. The boys released their first album Table Butter in 2019 and followed it up with their second, HANZOLO, in the fall of 2021. Hanzolo’s music has been compared to Table Butter: soft enough to spread yet hard enough to keep its shape.
Upcoming HANZOLO shows include April 8 at Madison Theater in Albany, April 14 at Pauly’s Hotel, April 24 at The Range in Ithaca and April 27 at Lark Hall.
Voting for the Final 4 has closed. Stay tuned for Championship Round starting on Saturday March 26 at 10am, ending Sunday, March 27 at 11:59pm!
NYS Music has partnered with businesses across New York State to highlight these 64 up and coming bands. Regional sponsors include Funk n Waffles, a premiere music venue in Syracuse established in 2007 with a unique take on the culinary and entertainment industries, offering a wide variety of gourmet waffles and breakfast food, as well as offering live music every night! Bearsville Theater in Woodstock is where Americana was born – where Dylan took folk music and married it to Rock & Roll. where folk went electric, and where Janis took a breath and recuperated, before launching her hurricane energy and heart stopping songs out into the world. Renovated in 2019-2020, Bearsville Theater has an impressive calendar of shows for Hudson Valley music lovers.
DSP Shows based in Ithaca, NY and Northampton, MA, is one of the leading independent concert promoters in America, with shows at venues including State Theatre of Ithaca, Hangar Theatre, The Haunt, Beak & Skiff Apple Orchards, Brewery Ommegang, Asbury Hall, The 9th Ward at Babeville, and Daryl’s House among others. The Helping Friendly Hemp Company offers a wide variety of industry leading products including tinctures, soft chews, and hemp flower, using only USA grown hemp extract.
The winners of each region will be rewarded with a collection of prizes worth $3000. Partners for NYS Music’s March Madness 2022 include Mirth Films from Albany, a music news/entertainment outlet that specializes in original video content and live streaming, with news coverage ranging across the whole country, who will provide a professional multi-camera recording session at The Palace Theatre in Albany for the winning band, premiering exclusively on Mirth Films.
The XPerience Monthly is the greater Capital Region’s alt-monthly newspaper, bringing independent music and thought provoking articles to the area. The XPerience Monthly will feature the winning band in a newspaper profile and interview this summer.