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Attention Houston-Area High School Musicians: Want to Win $500?

Hey, kids! Put down those damn Rock Band controllers for a second and listen up. Then go pick up some real instruments.

Rocks Off is proud to announce that, alongside Fuse and Sonic Bids, we are co-sponsoring the first annual Texas High School Rock Off, set for Friday, January 8, 2010 at House of Blues. (Boy, it's going to take us a while to get used to typing 2010.)

Entry forms are available in person at House of Blues Houston (1204 Caroline) and online here. Or they will be once that link is activated, anyway.

Here are the rules: Fill out the application and send it, a three-song demo and a $60 entry fee to:

High School Rock Off

House of Blues Houston

1204 Caroline Street

Houston, TX 77002

Bands who register online incur a non-refundable $10 registration fee, but only need to send $50 to the above address. Deadline is 5 p.m. Friday, December 18.

Rocks Off isn't quite an expert in these matters - it's been a long time since we were in high school - but it seems to us you might stand a better chance to win if you're already in a band and not just starting one after you read this. But who knows? Rock and roll careers have certainly been built on less.

Also, there might be a small chance your band will be selected to perform at the House of Blues in Dallas, but don't let that stop you. Think of it as your first lesson in touring.

Bands selected to perform will compete before a judge's panel on January 8. Since Rocks Off is sponsoring this thing, we assume one of us will be there. First place wins 500 clams, an opening slot for a national act at House of Blues and a trophy. Second place gets $200 and third $100.

Bands who are not selected to perform will have their $60 (or $50) returned, so you can buy another video game. Luckily, the holidays are coming up, so you should have plenty of time to practice.

Good luck!

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Chris Gray has been Music Editor for the Houston Press since 2008. He is the proud father of a Beatles-loving toddler named Oliver.
Contact: Chris Gray