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Bands battle it out in Dubai

Carl and the Reda Mafia crowned winners of the 30-way contest over three nights in Dubai

  • Image Credit: Supplied
  • Image Credit: Supplied
  • Image Credit: Supplied
  • The judges: (From left) Dia H, lead vocalist of Juliana Down, Mark Escueta of the award-winning Filipino band Image Credit: Supplied
  • Image Credit: Supplied
  • Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: Al Ghurair Centre’s Band Jam Battle of the Bands was a resounding success as in excess of 25,000 people took to the streets of Deira for the mall’s annual music competition.

 For the second year running, budding musical talent battled it out live on stage as top Dubai radio DJs hosted the evening.

The event, from November 13  to  15, saw 30 bands giving live performance to an energised crowd and an esteemed panel of judges.

Lead vocalist of Juliana Down Dia H, Mark Escueta from the award-winning Filipino band Rivermaya, and Musician’s Warehouse Founder Grand Collins all shared their opinions of the acts in front of the entrants and the audience.

Over 60 bands originally entered Band Jam, with 30 shortlisted to perform on Thursday and Friday night.

Winners

Carl and the Reda Mafia were crowned winners on the finals night as 10 bands took to the stage. Sons of Asaph won the live People’s Choice Award.

Over 5,000 music lovers attended the first night alone to watch the battle commence in the heart of Deira, outside the Al Ghurair Centre, Dubai’s original shopping mall.  This more than quadrupled as word quickly spread about the three-day festival.

The top three bands,  3rd Place - Gates of Gomorrah, 2nd Place – Nightlife, 1st Place – Carl and the Reda Mafia have won thousands of dirhams worth of prizes, with Carl and the Reda Mafia also winning musical equipment, studio recording time and a chance to hear their song played on local radio station.

They have also won a mentorship with international band, Rivermaya.

The music festival included a whole host of street entertainment and fun for all the family and music-lovers alike. Following on from last year’s battle of the bands success in which Sagisag won, and other events at the Al Ghurair Centre such as Dub-Fest international street theatre and comedy fair, the edgy hub of Dubai is rapidly becoming the epitome of free urban street entertainment in the UAE.

 

Top 10 finalists

The following bands took part in finals:

  • Ibrahim Swizz – soloist
  • Gates of Gomorrah
  • Sons of Asaph
  • Drasbor
  • Inside out
  • Goddamn Electric
  • The Prodigal Daughters
  • Nightlife
  • Bulletcells
  • Carl and Reda Mafia
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