Music City Mayhem

Lightning 100's Music City Mayhem 2022

Lightning 100’s Music City Mayhem is Nashville’s premiere new music discovery competition, exposing listeners to emerging talent while allowing Nashville’s Independent Radio to identify and support local stars in the making! Thirty-two local artists are chosen to battle it out on-air and online as they vie for the title of Music City Mayhem champions! It’s up to you, the fans, to determine who wins the grand prize.





*bold* indicates winner


  • 4/4: Jon Worthy VS. Blue Willow
    & Mandatory Leisure Group VS. Sarah Darling
  • 4/5: Israel McFarland VS. Stacey Kelleher
    & Kelsey Abbott VS. Gracie Hays
  • 4/6: Motherly Jet VS. BadCulture
    & Nove`VS. Nite Tides
  • 4/7: Bennett VS. Tedious & Brief
    & Tia Ortiz VS. Taylor Bickett
  • 4/8: Nick Howard VS. Neil O’ Neil
    & Ergo, Bria VS. Jacob Fleming
  • 4/11: Frank Samuel VS. Love Montage
    & Sugadaisy VS. Paul Vinson
  • 4/12: Kashena Sampson VS. Lenox Hills
    & Mcclendon VS. Thunder Lily
  • 4/13: Moony VS. Krantz
    & Muggs VS. Sarah Lake


  • 4/14: Blue Willow VS. Mandatory Leisure Group
    & Stacey Kelleher VS. Kelsey Abbott
  • 4/15: BadCulture VS. Nite Tides
    & Bennett VS. Taylor Bickett
  • 4/18: Neil O’ Neil VS. Ergo, Bria
    & Love Montage VS. Sugadaisy
  • 4/19: Lenox Hills VS. Mcclendon
    & Krantz VS. Sarah Lake


  • 4/20: Blue Willow VS. Kelsey Abbott
    & Nite Tides VS. Taylor Bickett
  • 4/21: Neil O’ Neil VS. Love Montage
    & Lenox Hills VS. Krantz


Kelsey Abbott, Taylor Bickett, Love Montage, Lenox Hills, and Nite Tides!

For official rules, click here.


The winning band will receive the coveted Music City Mayhem trophy and join the ranks of some of Nashville’s best emerging and established acts. The winning band will also receive an extensive artist development and promotion package that includes the following perks:

The Runner-Up will receive:

All entrants will receive



Music City Mayhem 2021 voting RECAP image

“Nashville, I want you to know who I am. You might think I’m just a punk who plays shows and posts on Instagram, but that will no longer suffice! So now I reveal the disguise. I was just a kid who lived here, who listened to The Avett Brothers, Of Montreal. I frequented Grimey’s and Cafe Coco. I moshed as hard as I could at every Live on the Green I could attend. I fell in love with this scene and every kind of artist I could witness. It’s the reason I became a person who calls themself a musician, and that’s before I started playing shows. I started playing shows! At any kind of back yard or basement or block party I could get my feet onto play until Taylor Cole in the East Room let me in. I saw with awe, the scale of the undercurrent in this town and I watched it throb. Albeit imperial, the music scene in Nashville is essential, enlightened, eternal, experimental, and ethereal! It belongs to us all, and its absence has united us too. I commit myself to bring great shows back to our city and I hope every single one of you does too. Because in victory, we will work to keep the energy alive in Nashville. And in defeat, we will continue to fight. If you believe in our capacity to reconnect & rejoice in each other in this division of our voices & bodies instead of our views, let me represent you.” – Nordista Freeze



2021 — Nordista Freeze
2020 — Fulton Lee
2019 — Creature Comfort
2018 — Jackson Bruck & The Dukes of Hume
2017 — The Voodoo Fix
2016 — Mountains Like Wax

2015 — Smooth Hound Smith
2014 — Phin
2013 — LuLu Mae
2012 — Roots of a Rebellion
2011 — Eastern Block (The Lower Caves)
2010 — Grand Magnolia (Paul McDonald)
2009 — Moon Taxi

“Music City Mayhem has been a true blessing to everyone here at Lightning 100 and the Nashville music community. Just look at our inaugural winner from 2009, Moon Taxi. We just saw them headline Nashville’s Municipal Auditorium and sell over 5,000 tickets. We have discovered so many great Nashville bands from the contest over the years. Every time we ask for submissions, we find someone new to love. Over the years the prize has gotten bigger and more valuable and it’s attracted more and more talented acts. Winning and playing Live on the Green is a big deal. Past winners have realized they were not even ready for all that came from being champions.” – Dan Buckley, Program Director

“Music City Mayhem was an experience that fit its name! It put us on the map overnight. Prior to the competition, it could be tough booking shows and gaining traction in town, but Mayhem helped legitimize what we were doing. Opportunities present themselves constantly now. There is a standard that has to be met in order to win MCM, and we are very thankful to be a part of the list of champions.” – Jackson Bruck, Music City Mayhem winner of 2018