Battle of the Bands at GC

Student band High Speed Dream wins competition, will open for Flo Rida at Homecoming concert


Jaylon Brooks, Asst. News Editor

GC had its annual Battle of the Bands on Feb. 8. The groups, led by GC students, competed for the chance to open for Flo Rida at the Homecoming Concert on Feb. 25.

The event was planned by the Campus Activities Board, held at the Magnolia Ballroom and judged by GC students.

The competition was made up of three bands: High Speed Dream, Subject to Change and Parking Ga-rage. Each group was given 15-20 minutes to perform their own selection of songs. Afterward, they were judged according to a set of criteria: technical skill, material used, stage presence, audience reaction and whether or not the performers seemed to be enjoying themselves.

“The event was awesome,” said Walter Kelly, junior business management major. “It was great to see a bunch of different bands play, each with their own style.”

High Speed Dream was the first band to perform. Emma Gullo, senior theatre major, was the band’s lead singer. The band played a list of covers, featuring “Black Magic Woman” by Santana and “Superstitious” by Stevie Wonder.

High Speed Dream was created three weeks before the competition, with Gullo having been introduced to the group through a mutual friend she met while working at Buffington’s.

Despite not having known each other long, Gullo stated that she felt an immediate connection.

“There was just like a spark there, you know, a click; it was a different energy when we first started to jam together,”Gullo said.

Subject to Change was the second band to perform. When the group of four came on stage and opened with a cover of the song “Valerie” by Mark Ronson, a surge of the crowd followed them.

“They are really awesome,” said Kelly. “I think they could go somewhere one day. They played a couple of good songs, and an original that’s going to be on Spotify, which is cool.”

The Battle of the Bands closed out with a performance from Parking Garage. Lead singer Dakota Snow, senior music major, entertained the crowd with his jovial stage presence, while the band played a cover of “RU mine” by Arctic Monkeys. They also played several original songs.

This event served as a breath of fresh air for Parking Garage, as they hadn’t played a gig since spring break of 2020.

“With COVID, we sort of took a break and our last show was literally before everything essentially went to shit,” Snow said.

Once Parking Garage finished their last song, the judges took a short intermission to deliberate. High Speed Dream was selected as the winner of 2022 Battle of the Bands.

Even though they performed after a couple weeks of practice, High Speed Dream managed to leave the victors. The band already has plans to ride the momentum of this win to even greater heights.

“We do have a lot of late-night gigs lined up at Buffington’s and we’re trying to get up to Athens and play in the community there,” Gullo said. “We’re not stopping here, we’re taking the long train running, for sure.”