Power the parade
Fruit Juice Parade, has attracted quite a following. The two-piece band from Palmerston North Girls’ High sees year-12 pupils Shannen Petersen on guitar and Tharushi Bowatte on drums.
After winning the regional finals of the Smokefree Rockquest, and for the second year, taking out the local competition’s People’s Choice award, the pair are the only group in the lower North Island still eligible to make the national finals in Auckland early next month.
The band - they qualify as one because of Bowatte’s drums - made the top 30 of the national competition, but need to capitalise on their local popularity if they are to snaffle the last remaining national People’s Choice finals spot.
‘‘It’s people’s support that gets us places,’’ Shannen, 17, said.
‘‘We are asking people to support us to reach the Smokefree Rockquest finals by voting for us. Just text fruit juice parade to 5678 – it will be 20c well spent.’’ The voting closes on Sunday. Fruit Juice Parade were wellknown for their performances at The Stomach, Snails and Swampfest.
They played house concerts, in April performed at Wellington’s Sad by Sad South festival, and were regularly featured on Massey University’s Radio Control.
The band’s next live performance will be at The Stomach on Thursday, August 24.
‘‘It’s not just about us. Our friends and family and the wider community seem interested, and it’s really easy when there’s that support,’’ Bowatte, 16, said.
Both have learned piano from an early age. Bowatte had played trumpet, while Petersen continued to play tuba for the school’s concert band, as well as being the school music department’s audio leader
Bowatte described their orig- inal music as indie pop-rock, though Petersen said they don’t stick to the conventions.
‘‘We write and play what we want,’’ she said.
‘‘It’s a parade - a bunch of people having fun,’’ Bowatte said.
Earlier this year the pair released their first single Whaling on Papaiti Records, available at fruitjuiceparade.bandcamp.com and on You Tube. They would like to record an album and to tour.
But first, the Rockquest finals. Winning the text campaign Bowatte said would be ‘‘a very Fruit Juice Parade way of getting there’’.
Tharushi Bowatte and Shannen Petersen make music as Fruit Juice Parade.