WENATCHEE — Time was running out.
Monitor couple Brad and Lisa Petit wanted to enter their Lynus and Lucy Band in a contest to open for Styx at Town Toyota Center.
But they needed a video. They only had one, a cover of Angus and Julia Stone’s “Big Jet Plane.”
“We didn’t know,” says Brad. “It was like a last-minute ‘Hey, how about this?’ We crossed our fingers and went, ‘OK, maybe this will stick.’”
It stuck, all right.
The Lynus and Lucy Band won top honors Jan. 20 in a contest hosted by Town Toyota Center to find a local band whose sound and style could get the audience stoked for Styx’s brand of retro-rock.
More than 14 bands posted videos on the center’s Facebook page for a chance to win the half-hour opening set.
They were judged both on the number of “likes” — Facebook-style votes — and by a committee of local experts.
The couple was setting up to play at East Wenatchee’s Clearwater Steakhouse & Saloon Jan. 20 when they got the news. They’d won!
“We are just so excited and overwhelmed with the support we got, not just from our fans but from the other bands in town,” said Lisa. “We’re such good friends with them … What a very cool contest. It just got everybody excited.”
Jennifer Bushong, marketing director for the center, said winners were chosen by a point system. The number of “likes” they received carried about three-quarters of the weight in the point tally. But judges were free to assign points based on the bands’ perceived ability, overall musical set, overall feel, stage presence and “the X factor” — the power to impress.
Judges narrowed the field to four finalists based solely on likes: Patrick Foster and the Locomotive received 1,000 likes; Lynus and Lucy, 670; Kevin Jones Band, 574; and Ghost Power!!!, 271.
When judges added up total points, the Petits’ band came out on top.
“The top three were just darn good. They really were,” said Larry Cramer, one of the seven-member selection committee. “We couldn’t pick heavy metal or country or a single folk player, because you’re trying to get the audience pumped for Styx.”
The Petits, both lifelong musicians and singers, moved to Wenatchee 12 years ago from Spokane and launched the band — inspired by one of the tunes that Brad could then play on the piano as a kid, the “Linus and Lucy” song from the Charlie Brown comic.
They played around town, but decided to take time off to be with their daughter, Shadyn, now 14.
Last April, they took to the stage for the first time in five years in Memorial Park during Apple Blossom, with Eric Frank, 39, on bass and Nathan Davis, 35, on viola. Brad and Lisa are both 39. He plays guitar and keyboards, she sings and plays egg shaker or tambourine. All band members play some percussion on what Brad calls a “deconstructed drum set.”
Their “acoustic alternative” sound spans many musical genres from classical and jazz to rock, alternative and country.
Brad says they’re writing music now and should have just enough to fill their opening, 30-minute slot — Styx insisted on a local band with original tunes.
“I know there’s a tremendous amount of talent in our region, but I had no idea how many different bands would want to do this and would have videos already,” Bushong said. “That was exciting to see. And it was exciting to see all the people who wanted to have a part in all of this and support their friends.”
Christine Pratt: 665-1173