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geekbandsGeekWire-BOTB-Preview2 (1)Who is Seattle’s top geek rocker? And best costumed geek? We’ll find out on Friday, Oct. 25th as we host the Battle of the Geek Bands and costume competition, the epic after party immediately after our Startup Day conference earlier in the day.

Bands will take the stage at the Showbox Sodo at 6 p.m., with each playing a 12-minute set. Our judging panel will then pick a winner, choosing them based on originality, stage presence and geek cred. Same goes for the costumed cosplayers, with our illustrious judging panel choosing their favorite ghost, goblin, Master Chief or Lara Croft during a brief intermission between the third and fourth bands. (You won’t want to miss this special new addition to the party).

SonYong Yu

What’s at stake, other than bragging rights?

Well, for one Seahawks tickets. The winning band will receive five awesome tickets to the Anheuser-Busch suite for the Buccaneers-Seahawks game on Nov. 3rd, courtesy of sponsor Budweiser. Meanwhile, the runner-up will get suite tickets to the upcoming Trans-Siberian Orchestra show at Key Arena, courtesy of Ticketmaster/Live Nation.

Since Halloween is just around the corner, this will also be the best place to test out your favorite costumed creations.

Seattle cosplay celebs Crystal Bates von Oy, SonYong Yu and Lisa Weeks will be perusing the crowd for the most creative and geeky costumes. Top cosplayers and costumers will win tickets to the Dec. 4th GeekWire Gala, and we’re told a few Stormtroopers and Darth Vaders from the Rebel Legion and 501st Legion may even blast their way in.

Costume contest judge Crystal Bates von Oy

Pretty sweet, huh?

You better get those instruments tuned, and costumes dusted off. (We’ve got just one opening left for the Battle of the Geek Bands, so make sure to reach out to GeekWire’s Daniel Rossi at if you think you can rock the house).

Tickets are just $5 for the Battle of the Geek Bands and costume contest, and entry is free for those who attend Startup Day. (More details on Startup Day, featuring speakers such as former CEO Dawn Lepore; Redfin CEO Glenn Kelman and others here).

Even more fun, you can earn free entry into the “Battle of the Geek Bands” by collecting all five Seattle startup founder postcards, located at coffee shops, bars and restaurants around the city. (Caffe Umbria, Zeitgeist, Cafe Lladro, SURF Incubator, 9Mile Labs, Caffe Vita on Pike, Office Nomads, etc.)

The postcards cards also will be handed out at various Seattle Startup Week events, starting tomorrow with Entrepreneur University at the Hub.

startupfounderstypesNeed help getting to Startup Day, Battle of the Geek Bands, or any of the Startup Week events coming up in the next week? Make sure to sign up for Car2Go, which is offering all attendees a special $10 membership and 30 minutes of free driving time. Just use the promo code CAR2GOLIFE when you register here.

Here’s a look at our lineup of bands, and as I mentioned, there’s just one more opening left.

Who do you think will grab the crown for geekiest tech band in Seattle? Make sure to get your tickets today!

“The Tax Authorities” from Avalara

Thys Wallwork, manager and lead guitar of The Tax Authorities:  “We’ve audited all of the other bands and, guess what, they owe penalties and interest. The Tax Authorities are coming and no one is exempt from our groove.”


“Double Down” from Double Down Interactive

Band quote: “One of the great things about Seattle’s culture is that everyone has their career which they’re extremely passionate about. But then they also have their ‘other’ thing they do that brings them joy, whether they’re an artist, musician, dancer, fire juggler, etc. DoubleDown is very grateful and excited for the opportunity to play the GeekWire Battle of the Bands.”


“The Packet Droppings” from ExtraHop

Band quote: “(We are) primed and ready to rock your bits off!”


“Severity 2” from 

Amazon is in the house, and they’re bringing some software engineering firepower with Severity 2 (aka Sev-2). Band members include Stephen Rosenthal (Electric Guitar); Preston Tamkin (Keyboard); David Dai (Lead Vocalist and Acoustic Guitar); Dimitri Mostinski (Drums); and Steven Beach (Bass). “We’re a bunch of techies who enjoy playing music together and becoming better through practice while having fun,” says Beach.

sev-2 head shot

A big thanks to our sponsors for helping to make Startup Day and the Battle of the Geek Bands possible: Wave Business SolutionsMozKnollDouble Down Interactive, the Museum of History and IndustryAvalaraWilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, BudweiserAmazon Web ServicesHughes Media Law GroupPerkins Coie9Mile Labs, CobaltCar2Go, Ticketmaster and TechStars (which is holding its Demo Day and after-party the day before at the same venue). Startup Day is part of Startup Week, presented by GeekWire and taking place from Oct. 18 to Oct. 30. It features more than a dozen events. For additional sponsor opportunities, contact GeekWire Chief Business Officer Daniel Rossi at

Get your GeekWire Startup Day tickets and Battle of the Geek Bands tickets below. Looking forward to seeing everyone — including any Nigel Tufnel impersonators, Star Wars characters and other outlandish ghouls and goblins — on Oct. 25!

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