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Williamsville South Band Wins Mountstock

by afussell
Mon, Nov 29th 2010 01:45 pm

Four Williamsville South High School students battled the cold and defeated area musical talent at the third annual Mountstock. Canoe, a band that performs a broad range of musical genres including pop, punk and indie, was crowned the winner of Mount St. Mary's Battle of the Bands based on audience votes. 

"My favorite part of performing music is being able to bring our songs to people," says Brent Martone, lead guitarist.  "We try to write songs that we really feel and believe in, because if we can't get into our songs how could anyone else?  So when we perform it's like putting out a part of ourselves, and when we get a positive reaction -- it's validation, not just of the song, but of us as people."

On October 22, students of Mount St. Mary Academy were joined by over a hundred music fans - from public and private high schools alike -- to enjoy an evening of fun and music.  Attendees enjoyed hot cocoas over bonfires while listening to the event's performers.

This year's competition pitted five bands from throughout the area. Competitors included The Raven (from Niagara Catholic High School), The Static (Hamburg and East Aurora High Schools), The Ways of Tom (Sweet Home High School) and Tom Heubusch (St. Joe's Collegiate Institute).

Canoe was founded by sophomores Brent Martone, James Celeste (lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist) and Casey Nuchereno (bassist) in the summer of 2009. They were joined by senior Austin Aungst  (drummer) later that year and have found a harmony that has won them much attention on the local performance rounds.

As Mountstock's victors, Canoe will receive 10 hours of recording time at GCR Audio, the recording studio of the Goo Goo Dolls.  Aided by a sound engineer, the band will have a unique opportunity afforded few high school bands to record their first single.