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New Zealand’s premier rock bar is calling for entries to its annual competition


New Zealand’s premier rock bar Ding Dong Lounge is proud to announce entries are now open for the annual Ding Dong Lounge Bands Competition. The competition returns for its 8th year, hosted upstairs at the bar’s bespoke live music venue Dead Witch.

“Our goal was to raise the standard of gigging bands who were just starting out,” reflects Ding Dong Lounge’s Entertainment Manager, Andrew Treeby. “We wanted to encourage the bands playing our venue to take their band more seriously, and provide one band with the opportunity to record a proper single.”

“Each year it's almost like we create a mini scene within the bands competing, and five years later they're still gigging together, often playing larger venues. It's a stepping stone for some of the greatest bands-to-be in Tāmaki Makaurau, and we’re proud to still be here offering the same support locally after the pressures of recent years.”

The competition consists of a series of heats on 14, 15, 21 and 22 October before moving into the semi-finals on 18 and 19 November for the chance to compete at the Ding Dong Lounge Bands Competition 2022 Final at Dead Witch on Saturday 26 November 2022. The winner will receive studio time worth $2000, recording a single with Sound Engineer and Music Producer Dave Rhodes of Dave Rhodes Productions and a music video to accompany the release, directed by Alex Hargreaves of Ah! Films and DOP Piotr Kwasnik of Video Buzz. Promotional artwork for the Single and Release Party to be held at Ding Dong Lounge is provided by Barny Bewick of Indium Design and a $1000 street poster campaign from Phantom Billstickers is included. This is topped off with $1000 cash from Ding Dong Lounge, a promotional package through and T-shirt Screen printing worth $300 through Epic Engraving.

All finalists will also receive a mentoring session with Dave Rhodes Productions on Performance, how to build a fanbase and get their music heard by a wider audience.

The current reigning champions WHITE NØISE MAFIA recorded and released their debut single The Divide following their 2020 win. “It was an awesome goal for us as a band,” says Matt Holden, Lead Guitarist. “It was a target for us to have a setlist of six songs ready in time for the competition, we only finished writing the last song of the set the day before the competition!"

“The competition was amazing and really got us started as a band,” agrees singer Chris Webb. “The prize money helped us film and record our first music video which got us on radio and playing bigger shows to new audiences. It was a blast!”

The quality of the competition is getting more and more fierce each year, with previous contestants including iconic names in Aotearoa’s rock scene such as Shepherds Reign, Crooked Royals, Coridian, Blue Ruin, Mudshark, Pale Flag, Channeled, Cafe Fistfight and more have all entered in previous years.

Bands can enter the 2022 competition now at

There’s a sign up fee of $25 and all information bands will need to know before entering is available on the same homepage. As Ding Dong Lounge and Dead Witch are an R18 venue, this competition is restricted to competitors aged 18 years and older.

For more information, please visit

Previous winners:

2016: Fallstate

2015: Bad State

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