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Local band competing for record contract

Spectators will appear on VH1's 'Make a Band Famous' competition

Local band Spectators will compete today with 23 other bands for the chance to win a record deal as part of VH1's "Make a Band Famous" competition.

"We are very excited," said Josiah Viland, a Batavia resident and the lead singer of Spectators. "There will be a live audience."

The 24-hour event will stream live starting at 7 p.m. today. As part of the event, the band will have to go through different challenges.

"In the first challenge, we will have to play a song in exactly 60 seconds," said Walter Halliwell, who plays guitar and synthesizer in the band. "They wanted to see how good we are by being flexible and on our toes."

People can vote for the band by tweeting a vote containing #SpectatorsMusic and #MABF. Multiple "tweets" count as well.

"Voting is something that the judges [will] take in consideration," Viland said.

The winner of the competition will receive a grand prize that includes a record contract with Republic Records and exposure on VH1’s show “You Oughta Know.”

Spectators, which describes its sound as indie-space-dance-punk/rejuvenation, formed three years ago. The band's members are from Batavia, Aurora and South Elgin.

The band members drove all night starting Monday in order to make it to New York City in time for the contest.

"We haven't slept in 32 hours, but that's rock 'n' roll," Halliwell said.

Know more

More information about VH1's "Make a Band Famous" competition is at

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