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Baysiders garner MTV buzz

A Queens−based band with members from Bayside, Flushing and Middle Village took the top prize last month at an MTV awards show that honored the best college bands without a record deal from across the country, the band’s bass player said.

The Bride Wore Black, a pop punk band that uses a synthesizer, was selected among thousands of bands nationwide as the winner of the Best Music on Campus award at mtvU’s Woodie Awards, said bass player Michael Antonucci.

The band includes Antonucci and lead guitarist Sam Fruner, both of whom are from Bayside, as well as Sean Walsh of Flushing and drummer Devin Passariello of Middle Village.

Antonucci said he hoped the MTV competition would draw attention to his band.

“We were really excited we won,” he said. “It was one of the best moments of my life. It’s definitely going to open doors for us. People will recognize our name and be more receptive to us.”

The band entered MTV’s contest earlier this fall and battled other groups throughout October and November. The competition eventually narrowed to two outfits — The Bride Wore Black and Virginia’s Chasing Arrows, both of which played at the Woodie Awards in Manhattan Nov. 12.

Lead singer Walsh named the band after a line in a poem he read, not the 1968 Francois Truffaut film of the same name, Antonucci said.

The band formed two years ago, although Antonucci and Fruner have known each other since kindergarten. Antonucci met Walsh during their high school years in Long Island and now both are seniors at New York University. The trio decided to form a band during their freshman year of college and eventually picked Passariello to be their drummer.

Antonucci said the band is currently contacting labels to garner interest in cutting a record and searching for a manager. The Bride Wore Black released an EP titled “PWNED” last summer and plans to record another in Cleveland this March. EP stands for extended play.

Meanwhile, the group is gearing up for a short tour that will begin later this week and take the band to Chicago and Buffalo, as well as parts of Michigan, Connecticut and New Hampshire.

The Bride Wore Black will kick off another tour in January that will take them to Florida and Texas. Most of the band’s venues are bars or lounges, Antonucci said.

“Since we are in school, we try to tour whenever we get the opportunity — like during winter break and the summer,” Antonucci said. “And we’re getting more recognition from it. We’re now in the process of trying to get signed to a label.”

The band currently sells its EP on iTunes and has its own online merchandise store.

Reach reporter Nathan Duke by e−mail at or by phone at 718−229−0300, Ext. 156.

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