The preliminary round for the Texaco Country Showdown  took place on Saturday at Keyboard Galleria Music Center . The three semi-finalists will perform at the City of Santa Clarita’s Concerts in the Park .
The Texaco Country Showdown is the biggest country music competition where bands across the country are sponsored by local radio stations. KHTS AM-1220 will be sponsoring the finalist that wins at Concerts in the Park. This performer or group will then compete at state, regional, and the national competition at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, Tenn.
The band that KHTS sponsored last year, Poor Man’s Poison , went on to win the entire Texaco Country Showdown receiving $100,000 and the title, “Best New Act in Country Music.”
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Seven new bands competed this past weekend. Out of the seven contestants that competed in the preliminary round, three advanced.
The artists that performed included Bourbon County, Boo Spence, Marie Wise-Hawkins and Band, Suzanne Harper, Ryan McMullen, the J Ranch Band and Ryan Arklin.
The three artists advancing to the next round are Bourbon County, Marie Wise-Hawkins Band and Suzanne Harper. These artists will be performing at the Concerts in the Park Series on July 13th at Central Park.
Judges Tracey Gold, Andrea Standley and David May chose the top three artists.
All performances were noteworthy, and the three finalists are ready to go and compete in further competitions.
Bourbon County  has four band members: Tyler Kershaw, Kevin Fosmark, Tim Jimenez and Tim Hutton. Between all of the members, Bourbon County has many years of experience in music. Overall they had a great time and found it to be an interesting experience.
Bourbon County believed their music went well and appreciated the localness of the venue. Kershaw had even been to the venue before for his nephew’s drum recital.
Tyler Kershaw said that it was nice talking to the judges after because “they had good insight for [their] next performance.”
Marie Wise-Hawkins & Band  is led by Marie Wise-Hawkins who has been recognized for her performances across the country. Her band includes William Herrington, Aaron Rudin, Steve Shook, Jesse Olema and Daniel Roberts. The band said they had a great time making country music and hoped that the audience had as much fun as they did.
Marie Wise-Hawkins said that they are “grateful to advance…and [they] have great expectations and will be striving to write and record great music for people to enjoy.”
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Suzanne Harper has a wide-variety of pieces ranging from pop to country to rock. She also has many notable performances, including one with Sugarland. After being sick all week and even having to cancel one of her shows on Friday, she was relived to wake up Saturday and actually have a voice.
Suzanne was excited to share the moment of advancing to the next round with her five-year-old daughter who is one of her many supporters of family and friends.
”The other artists were so talented…I was honored to move forward,” Suzanne Harper said.
Be sure to check out these rising talents at Concerts in the Park on July 13.
Texaco Country Showdown Semi-Finalists Chosen For Next Round
Article: Texaco Country Showdown Semi-Finalists Chosen For Next Round 
Source: Santa Clarita News
Author: Taylor O'Neil