Battle of The Bands

2010 Talent Show

Another year, another rousing success! Thanks to everyone who participated in our Battle of the Bands.

April 17, 2010 Program Archive »


1st Place

April Smith and the Great Picture Show
from Brooklyn, New York

April Smith and the Great Picture Show

April Smith has been described as “a loose-lipped, cocked-hip gal whose music and mien could buoy the Titanic.” That said, her Brooklyn-based band, April Smith and the Great Picture Show, is making a splash with their new album, Songs for a Sinking Ship. The band: April Smith (vocals, rhythm guitar), Marty O’Kane (guitar, uke, accordion ), Mike Bryan (keyboards), Steve Purpuri (bass ), Nick D’Agostino (drums).


2nd Place

Mudbugs Cajun and Zydeco Band
from Wichita, Kansas

Mudbugs Cajun and Zydeco Band

“We are an instant party!” That’s what the Mudbugs Cajun and Zydeco Band will tell you. And folks around Wichita, Kansas — their home base — are ready to join in the fun. The idea for the band came four years ago as these longtime friends were feasting on boiled crawfish (also called mudbugs). Juliah Ewing (washboard), Carter Green (fiddle), Erin Craddock (triangle, piano), Greg Ewing (accordion), Jaime Green (drums), Adam Ewing (bass), and Brian Cochran (guitar).


Ray Marklund Award

from Portland, Oregon

The Monarques

From Portland, Oregon, Monarques is a ’50s-style pop group that plays — as one reviewer put it — “squeaky clean elements of early rock ’n’ roll sullied up with a salty dollop of punk gruel.” Their self-titled EP is packed with feel-good sounds that take you back to a simpler time. The band: Joshua Spacek (guitar), Jon Preston (guitar), Lee Ellis (keys), Richard Bennett (bass guitar), Corey Ciresi (drums), Christine Busacca (percussion), and Talia Gordon (percussion).


Karl Stoll and the Danger Zone
from Washington, DC

Karl Stoll and the Danger Zone

Billed as “the most dangerous band in Washington, D.C.,” Karl Stoll and the Danger Zone delivers high-energy house-rockin’ blues. For six years, the group’s musical mix — original songs, sounds of blues masters such as Muddy Waters, Bo Diddley, and a hint of early rock ’n’ roll — has kept D.C.-area fans coming back for more. The band: Karl Stoll (guitar), John “Mojo” Dickson (harmonica), Brian Alpert (drums), and Jamie MacDonald (bass).


Bumblin' & Stumblin'
from Sellersville, Pennsylvania

The Monarques

Since one of their bandmates couldn’t make the gig, Alan Howe (guitar), Tim Hooper (keyboards), CJ Clark (bass), and Matt McNally (drums) assumed their alter-ego name, Bumblin’ & Stumblin’, for A Prairie Home Companion’s battle of the bands. Fact is, the boys are four-fifths of the popular Pennsylvania blues band Mike Guldin and Rollin’ & Tumblin’, whose latest release is Roadhouse Rhythm (Wah-Wah Boy Records).


Voting Rundown

As in years past, we'll be offering online voting during the talent show.

Throughout the first hour of the show, all five bands will play one or two songs each.

After all the acts have had a chance to perform (probably around 6 p.m. Central Time) we'll add a direct link to the ballot at

Online voting will end promptly at 6:30 p.m. (Central Time), and will be added to the votes tallied from the audience within the New Jersey Performing Arts Center.

Talent Show Archive

Old Sweet Songs: A Prairie Home Companion 1974-1976

Old Sweet Songs

Lovingly selected from the earliest archives of A Prairie Home Companion, this heirloom collection represents the music from earliest years of the now legendary show: 1974–1976. With songs and tunes from jazz pianist Butch Thompson, mandolin maestro Peter Ostroushko, Dakota Dave Hull and the first house band, The Powdermilk Biscuit Band (Adam Granger, Bob Douglas and Mary DuShane).

Available now»

American Public Media © |   Terms and Conditions   |   Privacy Policy