Entries are NOW OPEN for the
Battle of the Bands 2017 National Championship

You can register now to take part in next year's event.
celebrates its 21st Anniversary.

The event has been helping New Zealand bands establish themselves year after year; providing a platform for up and coming artists to gain valuable experience and win fantastic, career building opportunities for two decades.

History of the Event

Battle of the Bands - National Championship is New Zealand's largest and longest running R18 Band competition; events take place nationwide, allowing bands throughout the country to take part. The event has been an annual feature of the New Zealand music scene since 1993. In that time the event has developed significant brand recognition and is strongly supported. Many well-known NZ music artists have been previous winners and finalists of the event; such as OPSHOP, TADPOLE, BLINDSPOTT, Members of I AM GIANT, DEVILSKIN, 48 MAY, THESE FOUR WALLS, SONS OF ZIONand many others.

Aims and Overview

The event consists of over 50 live shows, held at leading professional live music venues throughout the country. Each year sees around 100 bands competing for a place at the National Final, which is held in Auckland in our 2 Auckland venues over 2 nights, this year on 24th and 25th July.

The primary function of the Battle of the BandsNational Championship is to provide a platform for emerging music talent to obtain greater public awareness and broaden their opportunities in the search for music industry recognition & progression.

Since 2009 the event has also offered greater involvement for fan/viewers, by means of competitions, digital developments and engagement within the judging by the use of audience voting alongside music industry judges.

Time Line of the Event

Initial planning for the event has already begun, with entries already opened through the event web site (

4 months of eliminations will be held at multiple live music venues throughout the country. Each venue hosts a series of heats, (and semi-finals in most cases) and regional finals. Throughout the event, judging and voting determines each region's champions; who then represent their region at the National Final in Auckland.

The first competition events will take place inearly April, with events running Nationwide throughout April, May, June and July 2017.

Entry Process

  • Bands enter online at
  • After registration, bands are placed into a heat at a venue nearest their location.
  • We recommend bands enter now to ensure a placement at their nearest venue.

Prizes / Sponsors

Over the years, Battle of the Bands - National Championship has been supported by many of NZ's premier brands (As well as some International companies), from recording studios, musical instrument retailers and their international top brands, clothing and footwear brands, music festivals, beverage companies, universities and much more. The 2017 prize list and supporting sponsors is partially complete with further announcements due shortly.

Tour of Europe

The new 20th Anniversary super prize is a 10 date Tour of Europe for the 2017 winners! This amazing opportunity will commence on 25th August in Spain, traveling around various European countries, finishing in Germany for the Oktober Fest events. More details will be announced soon.

Global Radio Airplay

2013 National Champions "The Fu King" (Dunedin) and 2nd place winners "Lee Gray & The Beat" (AKL) are both receiving radio airplay throughout the world thanks to our USA sponsors Musik & Film, global airplay specialists. This includes airplay on BBC1 UK, Numerous stations in the US, South America, Europe & More. The 2014 Winners 'Strangely Arousing' (Auckland); upon completion of the recording of their new single (from the prize they won from Roundhead Studios) will also be receiving Global Radio Promotion from Musik & Film.

Allen & Heath Mixing Desk and Audio Technica Prizes

Thanks to our wonderful sponsors Jansen Sound, the winning band each year gets to take home a state of the art, high quality mixing desk from the world renowned brand Allen & Heath. Jansen's other world famous brand, Audio Technica (The World's biggest selling microphone brand) also supplies microphones and headphones for runner up prizes and individual musician award prizes.

More Prizes will be announced soon


The country's best Live Music Venues will host Battle of the Bands National Championship events. 2017 venues are: Juice Bar&The Kings Arms in Auckland, Biddy Mulligan's in Hamilton, Brewers Bar in Mount Maunganui, The Mayfair in New Plymouth, The Royal in Palmerston North, The Cabana in Napier, Bodega in Wellington, Dux Live in Christchurch and Sammy's in Dunedin. Additional venues in Otago and Southland are also likely to be added.

2017 Event dates and Venues.

All dates and additional venues are currently being confirmed. As dates are announced, they will appear on the Competition page of this website.


We're proud to announce that Roundhead Studios is now our recording studio sponsor for the event.

The winning band will record a single at this fantastic Auckland recording studio.

Roundhead Studios is New Zealand’s finest multi studio recording facility. A truly inspirational and beautiful place to make music.

Our USA sponsors Musik & Film, global airplay specialists, through their radio promotional division, MUSIK RADIO PROMOTIONS will again be working with us to promote the winning bands single throughout the world. The winners' song will be delivered and promoted to over 250,000 radio stations in over 180 countries.

The 2013 National Champions ‘The Fu King’ (Dunedin) and 2nd place winners ‘Lee Gray & The Beat’ (AKL) are both receiving radio airplay throughout the world. This includes airplay on BBC1 UK, Numerous stations in the US, South America, Europe & More.

As the oldest sound company in New Zealand, Jansen has maintained a reputation for delivering high quality, reliable audio and lighting solutions since 1949. Jansen has been Battle of the Bands sponsors for several years now, we are very proud to be supported by this legendary NZ Music company. Jansen's world class brands, Allen & Heath, makers of the industry standard - professional's choice of mixing desks; and Audio Technica, the world's leading microphone brand, are both supplying fantastic prizes to the winning band as well as for the runners up and individual prizes.

Dave Morello, Paiste Cymbals and Tama Drums endorse and drummer for rock band FUSER, will again be supporting the event with his company ROCK YOU MENTAL.

This includes his alliance with Musicworks, Paiste and Tama bringing competing drummers the opportunity to win great prizes from Paiste and Tama, not only for the winning band but also for his choice of the best drummers in the event as well. In addition, Dave is providing top of the range drums and cymbals for some of the regional finals and the national finals for all the drummers to use as well as providing drums, cymbals and his hands on personal assistance to the winning drummer at their recording session at Roundhead Studios.

NZ's largest music retain chain, Musicworks is supporting the event with prizes from their world class famous brands Paiste Cymbals and Tama Drums.


More great prizes will be announced real soon.

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