Execs Who Rock

Eight company bands head to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and Museum as finalists of the FORTUNE Battle of the Corporate Bands

August 13, 2007

Eight lucky bands are leaving the conference room for the concert hall as finalists of the Seventh Annual FORTUNE Battle of the Corporate Bands. The first music competition of its kind, the FORTUNE Battle of the Corporate Bands provides amateur, company-sponsored bands the opportunity to lose the tie and briefcase and pick up their passion. These eight bands will take the stage at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in Cleveland, Ohio, on Oct. 5–6, 2007, and have the opportunity to live out their rock 'n' roll fantasies and compete for the title of best corporate band. For a brief moment they will leave behind the stress of nine-to-five jobs for a chance to live their dreams.

FORTUNE Battle of the Corporate Bands is a partnership between NAMM (the trade association of the international music products industry), FORTUNE magazine and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, and celebrates the positive effects of getting together to make music, which has been shown to increase employee morale and productivity in the workplace.

Out of the 41 entries, 18 bands from across the nation were chosen to participate in one of three qualifying regional playoffs, and eight finalists were selected to vie for the top spot. The finalists of the Seventh Annual FORTUNE Battle of the Corporate Bands include:

High Definition from NBC Universal in Burbank, Calif.
Comprised of five employees who collectively have over 80 years of service with NBC Universal, and a sixth member who left the company a few years ago, but never really got "the peacock" out of his system. Ages range from late-20s to mid-50s, whose love for television crosses over to a passion for rock 'n' roll.

The Loaners from Quicken Loans in Livonia, Mich.
Made up of four employees, the band has created quite a following since it started in 2005. The band produced a video of the song "What I Like About You" changing it to "What I Like About Q" that is played at all the Cavaliers Games at the Quicken Arena. They have also played for local charity events for cancer, Hurricane Katrina and child abuse, raising more than $20,000. The Loaners even opened up for the Black Eyed Peas at the company’s 20th anniversary celebration.

Subliminals from Grey Worldwide in New York, N.Y.
Comprised of 13 people, including four female singers and a five-piece horn section, the Subliminals are sure to keep crowds entertained. The band was formed specifically to compete in the competition, but all the members have been musically inclined from a young age. In addition to playing in the competition, the Subliminals also play at advertising industry gigs.

Soul Focus from American Century Investments in Kansas City, Mo.
An 11-member band made up of current and former American Century Investment employees, Soul Focus thrives with enough energy to get entire crowds tapping along with the band. Their R&B tunes ring with the beats of horns, guitars and drums and are a natural fit for Kansas City’s jazz and blues roots.

Unrestricted Entity from Deloitte Consulting in New York, N.Y.
The band includes 10 band members with 2 women and age range of 23 to 58 with jobs ranging from analyst to senior partner. Together, the new band merges a solid mix of vocal harmonies with a wide array of instruments that give Unrestricted Entity a powerful, classic rock sound that is unmistakably reflected in their performance.

Trainwreck from Calzone Case Company in Bridgeport, Conn.
Trainwreck is comprised of seven members, ranging in age from 17 to 53. Six out of the seven band members are employees and the 7th member is the 17-year-old son of an employee. They practice in the office after work twice a week, and they actually recorded their tracks submitted for the competition at the office. Although the members span different generations, they all share a love for music and a need to play rock 'n' roll!

No Subordination from Derivative Fitch in New York, N.Y.
This six-member band started when a few of them got together for a jam session on an apartment rooftop in New York City. They were so good that neighbors ended up coming out and jamming with them. They later played at a Halloween party and firmly solidified their group.

No Subordination practices in studios in the garment district in Midtown and has played fundraisers and charity events for Derivative Fitch, an independent provider for the credit derivatives market.

Band Turismo from Sony Computer Entertainment in Forest City, Calif.
The newly formed band comprised of four males and one female joined together from all corners of Sony Computer Entertainment to jam and let off some steam after a day of work. Coming from different departments—consumer services, IT, legal and business affairs—the band gives members a chance to interact and build relationships with co-workers across the company. The day’s stress melts away and the beats of good old rock ‘n' roll has everyone singing along.

All proceeds from the FORTUNE Battle of the Corporate Bands competition will benefit the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's education programs. Winners of the competition will receive gear from event sponsors and a special “rock star” trip to the 2008 NAMM Show in Anaheim, Calif., Jan. 17–20, 2008.

Started in 2001, the FORTUNE Battle of the Corporate Bands event encourages friendly competition among a vast variety of companies that support their employees, recognizing that music helps develop teamwork, discipline, creativity, passion, harmony and commitment—all skills that are valued in business. In fact, recent research conducted with long-term care workers showed reduced employee turnover (18.3 percent decrease) due to the implementation of a recreational music making program. Along with FORTUNE, NAMM and The Rock Hall, the Battle of the Corporate Bands is sponsored by Gibson, KeyBank, Lava World International, Rock and Roll Fantasy Camp and Air Products.

About the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum is the nonprofit organization that exists to educate visitors, fans and scholars from around the world about the history and continuing significance of rock and roll music. It carries out this mission both through its operation of a world-class museum that collects, preserves, exhibits and interprets this art form and through its library and archives as well as its educational programs. The Museum is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. On Wednesdays the Museum is open until 9 p.m. Museum admission is $20 for adults, $14 for seniors (60+), $11 for children (9–12) and children 8 and under and Museum members are free.

FORTUNE, the leading biweekly business magazine, is known for its unrivaled access to industry leaders and decision makers throughout the world. FORTUNE's annual ranking of the 500 largest corporations, the FORTUNE 500, is the ultimate benchmark of business success. Founded in 1930, FORTUNE has grown to a worldwide circulation of more than 1 million and a worldwide readership of nearly 5 million. The Web site, icon link www.fortune.com, which averages 10 million page views per month, keeps visitors ahead of the business curve by providing up-to-the-minute information and analysis of the people and trends driving business innovation. The FORTUNE Conference Division extends the magazine's editorial mission into live settings, hosting a wide range of annual conferences for top-level executives, including the FORTUNE Global Forum, the FORTUNE Innovation Forum and the Most Powerful Women Summit. FORTUNE, along with FSB: FORTUNE Small Business, Money, Business 2.0, and the Web site icon link CNNMoney.com is part of The Time Inc. Business and Finance Network, which is a division of Time Warner, the world's largest media company.