Lost in Liberty
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Lost in Liberty

Liberty, Kentucky, United States

Liberty, Kentucky, United States
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"Local group "Lost in Liberty" wins Battle of the Bands"

By Donna Carman
Tuesday, January 11, 2011 at 4:12 pm

A little over two years ago, they couldn’t play a note, but on Sunday, a local band emerged as the winners of the Lake Cumberland Battle of Bands competition.
“Lost in Liberty” — a folk rock/blues band comprised of college students David Emerson, Ben King and Chris Carman — took home the top prize from among 32 bands of various genres.
And it was a huge surprise.
“I thought we did good, but I never expected we’d win it,” Carman said.
This was the second year for Lost in Liberty to compete in Clear Channel-Lake Cumberland Battle of the Bands, sponsored by Don Marshall Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep-Nissan. The event was held at The Center for Rural Development in Somerset with preliminaries on Friday night and Saturday.
Lost in Liberty, who didn’t place last year, was among the last bands to play on Saturday night. This time they made the Top 12 and were invited to the finals on Sunday.
“It’s an honor just to be in the Top 12,” Carman said. “That’s an honor that 20 other bands didn’t get.”
The first round saw the band play six songs in 20 minutes. In round two, they were allowed 25 minutes, and they played nine songs. All told, they played 11 original songs and four covers, songs that have been recorded by other artists.
The bands were judged on musicianship, originality, stage presence, vocals, professionalism, sound, overall performance, marketability, entertainment value, and crowd participation/reaction/control, according to Wynona Padgett, promotions and community affairs director for Clear Channel Radio-Somerset.
Padgett, who serves as the Battle of the Bands director/producer, said this is the fifth year for the competition. The event typically draws about 30 bands who compete as well as about 10 who play in exhibition.
“We have many bands from Somerset that enter, but we have also seen an increase in the number of bands from across the state, as well as from Tennessee and even Indiana,” she said. “We encourage all genres of bands to enter and usually have bands representing rock, metal, Bluegrass, country, Christian, indie rock and blues.”
During the awards presentation, the bands were called up front and the places announced from 12th to first.
“As far as I was concerned, we accomplished our goal,” King said. “Whatever place we got was good by me.”
King, however, was the most optimistic of the group, predicting they would finish sixth, in the middle of the pack.
Emerson said he thought they would be 12th, “but that was OK,” and Carman had them in ninth, “but just hoping to be in the Top 5.”
As each band was called, and Lost in Liberty remained standing, the members said they grew more nervous.
“Every time they’d call a band, Chris would say, ‘We’re next,’” Emerson said.
After sixth place was called, Carman said he thought, “Wow! We did make the Top 5.”
And when Lost in Liberty was still around with only three bands remaining, they realized they would get some cash for their win as the top three earned prize money.
In the final two, it was Lost in Liberty and The Sooners, a progressive country band from Richmond.
“As soon as they announced The Sooners (as runners-up), I nearly fell over,” Carman said.
As the winners, Lost in Liberty collected $1,000 from Don Marshall Chrysler-Dodge-Jeep-Nissan, a $400 professional photography package from B’Lynda’s Photography, a custom design and 10 T-shirts from Shotgunblast Printing, a trip to a number of various destinations for each member of the band from Clear Channel-Lake Cumberland, and a concert gig at the Pulaski County Fair.
In addition, Lost in Liberty is guaranteed a spot at the Master Musicians Festival this summer, and will return to the Battles of the Bands next year to play in exhibition.
Padgett said she is going to enjoy working with the members of Lost in Liberty in the coming year, and she is proud of how far they have come in the two years she’s known them.
“The one thing I love about them winning is that they brought a fresh new sound to the cmpetition and helped prove that any genre of music can produce a first place win,” she said.
That’s not bad for three high school friends who never even thought of playing music until about three years ago.

Donna Carman
The group “Lost in Liberty” belt out a tune Sunday afternoon at the Center for Rural Development in Somerset as they performed in the finals of the Lake Cumberland “Battle of the Bands” competition. The band placed first from among 32 competitors.

The Dylan influence
Lost in Liberty formed in September 2008, three months after Emerson, King, Carman and another friend, Zack Pennington, graduated from Casey High.
“In high school, we listened to music, but never really thought about forming a band,” Carman said.
After graduation, the foursome began going to Somerset and listening to local bands at Cruisers Live Music Showcase.
Pennington had been taking guitar lessons for awhile, and Emerson started also. King said his brother, Bradley, had received a set of drums, but didn’t play them much. King tried his hand at them.
“I really took a liking to it,” he said.
That led Carman to pick up the missing piece with a bass guitar, and he taught himself how to play.
The first song they learned was Bob Dylan’s version of “Knocking on Heaven’s Door.”
It wasn’t long before they began to pen their own songs, with their first original, “Mr. Jones’ Retirement Party,” written by Emerson.
Between going to classes and working part-time jobs, the band made time for regular practices and played wherever they were asked.
They’ve played two years at the Casey County Apple Festival, Relay for Life, the Monday Musicales in Liberty, the Hitching Post Café, the Ham Days Battle of the Bands, the Haunted Heat Wave (a benefit for the Science Hill Haunted House), and for Pulaski Goes Pink and Purple, a benefit to raise money for breast cancer awareness and domestic violence awareness.
Lost in Liberty (minus Pennington, who left the band in February) also played in “Pennyrail,” a summer concert series last year at Faubush.
“We just jammed for entertainment,” King said.
Now with a prestigious Battle of the Bands win on their resume, what’s next?
The guys said they’ve discussed taking their winnings and possibly recording a good quality, full-length CD.
“We’ve recorded two demos, but we’d like to do something good,” Emerson said.

Meet the Band
David Emerson — Guitar, harmonica and lead vocals; 21, junior at Campbellsville University, majoring in English; parents, Kent and Patty Emerson.
Chris Carman — Bass guitar, back-up vocals; 21, junior at Western Kentucky University, majoring in education; parents, Jeff and Donna Carman.
Ben King — Drums; 20, junior at Western Kentucky University, majoring in sociology with a minor in land surveying; parents, Jeff and Vera King. - Casey County News


Elevator Music (EP)



Formed in September 2008 to fill a void in three young mens' lives.