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Thursday at the Ritz Ybor: Watch local bands cover George Michael and Wham!

Normally, we don't get too excited about Battle of the Band contests. Unless these guys are in them. Or these guys.

But we have to say, we're a little intrigued by the band battle taking place every Thursday this month at the Ritz Ybor. Four bands will compete each night for $500 and the chance to open for a national headliner. The finals take place on Aug. 19.

The best part, though, is the cover portion of the show. In addition to two original songs, bands will be required to work up one cover by a certain artist each week. This week it's the music of George Michael and Wham!. For the sake of fairness, each week's artist tribute won't be announced until a week before the show, but we've seen the list of upcoming themes, and we think it could be a lot of fun. They don't stray too far from the George Michael school of pop, we'll say that.

This Thursday's lineup consists of Calista, the Ins and Outs, Lovecunningham and 10th Concession, above. Last we heard, the Ritz was still accepting some late entries to the contest -- click here for details.

If you're looking for one more reason to check out the Ritz on Thursday, there's this: Starting Friday, the venue will be closed for a week for renovation. They're completely redoing the ballroom floors and installing new curtains and more in the VIP balcony. So by the time Smashing Pumpkins come to town July 21, you could be looking at a whole new Ritz.

-- Jay Cridlin, tbt*

[Last modified: Wednesday, July 28, 2010 3:20pm]


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