Vote Now In The ‘B98.5 Skowhegan Fair Great Country Quest’
The entries are in, and now it’s time for you to determine the four finalists in the ‘B98.5 Skowhegan Fair Great Country Quest!’
Voting is now closed, the four finalists with the highest vote totals will be invited to perform at the fair on Aug. 8. Additionally, the band with the highest vote total from the event judges will receive a grand prize of $1,500, the second-place band will receive $750, the band with the third-highest vote total gets $250 and the fourth-place band will win $100.
Check out all the bands below, listen to one of their songs, and then vote at the bottom for the top four best bands in New England in the ‘B98.5 Skowhegan Fair Great Country Quest!’
1) 43 North
43 North calls the Portland area home. After many years of individually honing their skills playing at local watering holes, corporate functions, state fairs, and assorted “private functions”, the members of 43 North finally came together in 2011 with the common goal of providing high-energy modern country music and performances to Northern New England. 43 North’s lineup of Shawn Theriault, Steve Brown, Chris Penney, Jack Rioux, and Richard Corson have over 100 years of combined musical experience including opening for national acts such as Uncle Kracker, Buddy Guy, Big and Rich, Miranda Lambert, Jason Aldean, Keith Urban, and Gretchen Wilson to name a few.
Listen to 43 North-“Who’s Your Daddy”
2) Borderline Express
Borderline Express has been around many years. The latest configuration has people talking. Never has the band had so much energy! From classic rock to modern country and rock and their originals, Borderline Express brings showmanship to a new level! Destined to have a good time when you hear their music, people are dancing every weekend to the band somewhere. They always take requests and do their best to keep up to date on the latest music. Cross the line and rock out to Borderline!
Listen to “Country Girl” Borderline Express
3) Buck T. Edwards
Raised in a farming family in rural Maine, Buck learned the guitar from his Canadian uncles who were prominent musicians in the Maritimes. With his knack for writing catchy melodies, Buck’s past bands have been selected for such honors as: Best Pop Act in the City, Jim Beam artist development grant recipient and performances at national music conferences and label showcases. Recently Buck was selected for the Colgate Country Showdown by WKLB in Boston, the Whaling City Festival in New Bedford, Mass. and Greenfest in Boston, Mass. . Always a prolific songwriter, Buck continues to perfect his craft with regular sojourns to Nashville to learn and write at NSAI’s advanced songwriter camp with seasoned pros such as John Ims and James Dean Hicks.
He has performed over 500 gigs at last count and has appeared onstage in over 20 states.
Listen to “Thank God for Beer” – Buck T. Edwards
4) Parris Bacon
Parris Bacon was born in New England and got his inspiration for country music from watching “Hee Haw” as a child on his grandfather’s farm in upstate New York. He began playing the guitar at age 12, writing his first song and starting a neighborhood band by age 13. Bacon was greatly influenced by his mother’s love of country music and artists such as: Elvis Presley, George Jones, Alan Jackson, Hank Williams Jr. and Jeffrey Steele. Over the years, Bacon has played both in bands and acoustic from Maine to California and in the fall of 2008, moved to Nashville to record music and perform in various clubs.
Listen to “Zoogie Nashville” -Parris Bacon
5) The Allison Ames Band
Featuring one of the most popular female vocalists in the state of Maine, The Allison Ames Band is quickly becoming the “must see” band of the year! Allison has been voted Female Vocalist of the Year by the Downeast Country Music Association and, along with “The Flames”, won the Wrangler Country Showdown and appeared in Nashville and Las Vegas. While in Nashville, she appeared at the Nashville Palace, The Carousel Club and was an extra in a Vince Gill music video! Allison has opened for Tom Wopat, Clinton Gregory, Diamond REO and Asleep at the Wheel. Drawing on years of experience and striking a balance between old and new, The Allison Ames Band is capable of doing practically any type of music, from Elvis to Sugarland or from Creedence to K.C and the Sunshine Band! Infused with tight three-part harmonies, tasteful instrumental breaks and solid rhythms and beats, their music will keep your feet tapping, your hands clapping and have you singing along with every song!
Listen to “Pontoon” – The Allison Ames Band
6) The Rory Scott Band
Rory Thurston, a New Hampshire native, is a new country entertainer who does not hold back! He puts every inch of energy into his performance with strong vocals and great dance moves. Rory put his musical pursuits on hold while raising his children. Now he is pulling out the stops and showing what he has been holding back. In 2011, Rory won male entertainer and male vocalist for the NH Country Music Association. That win, in addition to his family’s insistence pushed him on to win Male Vocalist at the Northeast Invitational Country Showdown. He really stepped it up by driving down to Tennessee and seeing how a New England boy could compare against the Old South. Pretty good it turns out, as Rory won the 2012 National Male Entertainer category for New Country at the North American Country Music Association International Competition. A fan of new and traditional country as well as Classic and Southern rock, The Rory Scott Band’s Influence can be felt in every song. Rory’s Band has an over combined 80 years of musical influence. All the Rory Scott Band’s members have roots covering rock, country and blues. The entire band is dedicated to creating a high energy, driving show that has great rhythms and strong vocals. While predominantly a cover band, they have some very good originals they sprinkle in as well.
Listen to “God Gave Me You” – The Rory Scott Band
7) The Tina Kelly Band
The Tina Kelly Band is a 5-piece band that plays mostly country with a little bit of everything else thrown in the mix. We aim to please the crowd by giving them all something they know and love in an effort to keep them out on the dance floor. We have only been in existence since January of 2013 and we have been playing out as much as possible and absolutely love it. We recently placed 2nd and 3rd in the PTSCMA’s 2013 Traditional Country Band and Modern Country Band categories respectively. Our members are as follows: Tina Kelly is our lead vocalist, Jamie Ruhlin plays bass and sings as well, John Morgan plays guitar and sings, Jeff Chaplin is our lead guitar player and Steve Ackerman plays drums and handles our sound as well.
Listen to “Kerosene” – The Tina Kelly Band
For more than 20 years, Bobby Reed has led the band ‘Wildhorse’ through tough times to become one of Maine’s premier country bands. Their calendar boasts from 50 to 100 shows a year and they always booking new events. Wildhorse is regularly booked at The Silver Spur in Mechanic Falls, Maine as well as a many Legions and Social Clubs from all over New England. The band’s repertoire is vast, covering country, blues and classic rock from the 50’s to the present. In the course of an evening you can hear songs from artists like Merle Haggard, Hank Sr., Hank Jr., Waylon Jennings, Dwight Yoakam, Eagles, Bob Seger and Roy Orbison. The seasoned experience of Wildhorse allows them to cover almost any request made by patrons and fans. In the off chance they really don’t know a particular song, they can play something that is almost like it in genre, tempo and feel. Whatever the demographic, Wildhorse can provide entertaining music for everyone from 9 to 99.
Listen to “Wildhorse” – Wildhorse