Love Wagon named winner of Battle of the Bands 2018

Love Wagon performing at Battle of the Bands 2018 at Ryerson’s Mattamy’s Athletic Centre on March 23. Photo by Noushin Ziafati

Love Wagon, a five-piece band that fuses jazz, funk, rock, blues and afrobeat, has been named the winner of Ryerson’s Battle of the Bands 2018.

The sixth annual battle was hosted by Musicians@Ryerson in the Mattamy Athletic Centre’s Coca-Cola Court on March 23. It drew a crowd of over 500 people.

Upon getting on stage, Love Wagon kept shouting the words, “The wagon is in the station!”

The crowd clapped along to their chant and funky music.

The band consists of saxophonist John Abou Chacra, guitarist Max Swiderski, keyboardist Sam Ehsaie, bassist Michael Osztertag and drummer David Matta.

Love Wagon has played in Ryerson’s Battle of the Bands for three years in a row, winning second place in the past two years.

Chacra said this year’s show was his favourite one yet.

“It was amazing…All the bands were great today, they were all fantastic bands,” he said.

Along with their victory, Love Wagon has earned a paid gig with Ryerson Students’ Union (RSU) in the fall and a spot in the lineup at Riverfest Elora, a music festival taking place in Elora, Ont. in August.

Funny Funk, a 10-member soul/funk band was named runner-up at the event.

Also performing at this year’s Battle of the Bands were groups Jackpine, Burn Apollo, The Jims and Mauve Grove.

“The bands just kept it at a really, really good peak the entire time. It was a really good mix of performances – usually we only get rock or indie or something like that. But now, we’ve got things like funk, we’ve got things like hip-hop; it’s really fantastic,” said Kieran Ramnarine, the president of Musicians@Ryerson.

According to Ramnarine, Musicians@Ryerson has been working to put the show together since May. “We had set our sights high … and I’m really happy to see it,” he said.

The panel of judges at the event was made up of Riverfest Elora representative Haydn Watters, RSU campus groups administrator Dawn Murray and Dine Alone Records marketing coordinator Matt Nolson.

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Noushin Ziafati
Photo by Noushin Ziafati

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran
Photo by Rashmiya Ilankeswaran

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