The registration process will commence from July 20 and the last date is Aug. 15. Each band should comprise of more than two members and the participants are open to performing any genre of music. The selection process will be based 75 per cent on judges votes and 25 per cent on audience votes. The competition is open to regional bands from other cities as well.
The auditions are scheduled to be held on Aug. 18-19 in Bangalore and Aug. 25-26 in Chennai. Fans can vote for their favourite bands through their mobile phones across all networks. The winning band will get a chance to record their album on EMI Music and win a cash prize of Rs. 1.5 lakh.
With the property being promoted on a large scale this year, the number of bands being selected in each round has also increased substantially. The channel is expecting around 200 registrations in the semi-professional category, 100 from each city, and around 20-25 bands will be selected for the semi-finals to be held in Chennai.
The entries will be further shortlisted and a total of 8-10 bands will participate in the finals to be held on Sept. 23 in Chennai. The channel will also play tracks from eminent independent bands in all languages from 5-6 pm everyday as its on-air promotions. Apart from that, Chennai Live will also host numerous on-ground activities and campaigns in colleges giving young students the opportunity to audition in these events.
The main partners of the event this year are Aloft, Paypal, Times of India (Bangalore and Chennai) and Techzone. The station has introduced The Purple Fest's Aloft edition this year. The event is a run-up to the competition and features independent bands performing a concert at the Aloft Hotel in Bangalore and Chennai. The Purple Fest is a monthly event that was introduced recently. As a run up to the Band Hunt, there will be one band featured every week in each city which will perform concerts open to the public.
Speaking about the property, Chennai Live COO Prem Kumar said: "This is one of our biggest properties and this year, we have invested a huge amount in the talent hunt. We are the only station promoting independent bands aggressively and aim to increase our efforts in providing them with a platform to prove themselves. Last year, we received a number of entries from many other cities and in fact, our second prize winner was from Bangalore. We aim to take one step at a time and have thus launched the property in Bangalore this year. Secondly, we feel that the professionals should be given a chance as well to showcase their skills and have introduced a special category for them." This special corporate category that Kumar mentioned has been introduced for corporate executives and professionals. These amateur independent bands by professionals will not compete with independent bands and will be treated as a separate section altogether.
Commenting on the promotions, Kumar said: "There are a lot of independent bands today playing music in different languages. Not many people get to hear them as they could be from anywhere in India. So, apart from having a one-hour slot dedicated to the genre, we are also slipping in a song or two between other time bands as well. We are also having auditions in colleges to encourage students to participate in the hunt and showcase their talent."
Platforms for independent artistes are slowly gaining momentum in the country. Such initiatives and competitions go a long way in encouraging and boosting the emerging talent today.