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Santa Fe band wins slot at Taos Solar Fest

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — And the winner is …

Santa Fe band, Anthony Leon and the Chain, were named the winners of the first annual band search by the Taos Solar Music Festival.

The alternative country band won an opening 45-minute slot on the main stage of the festival. It also won $1,000 to cover travel expenses.

“We can certainly see how Anthony Leon and the Chain were chosen by the public as our first Band Search winners – they managed to connect with their fan base through their great sound,” said Dawn Richardson, Taos Solar Music Fest organizer. “A great plus is how professionally they have conducted themselves. We really look forward to working with them and consider them a great addition to this exciting event.”

The band’s entry video and song, “How the West was Won” won them the most votes over four other competing bands.

A total of 24 New Mexico bands entered the contest, which were then narrowed down to the top five picks, chosen by music industry experts. The public was invited to vote for their favorite on the Taos Solar Music Festival’s Facebook page.


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The winner was then determined by the number of public votes cast online.

“We are really excited of course to play alongside top notch performers like Lyle Lovett and the Del McCourey band, but what really strikes a chord for us is how many people believed in and voted for us in this competition thanks to our fan base and management team who helped us get great exposure,” said Leon. “We’re excited about playing in Taos which is a fun, personable community that helps me find inspiration. This is a great opportunity to share our music; I love when our stories becomes other people’s stories through our songs. To make it in this business, you have to have both opportunity and ability — the Taos Solar Music Fest is giving us that opportunity to do what we love and to be heard.”

Thousands of music lovers will pack Kit Carson Park for the 14th annual Taos Solar Music Festival, June 30 and July 1, where they can watch Anthony Leon and the Chain share the stage with Grammy Award-winning performers Lyle Lovett and Los Lobos, along with the Del McCoury band, Michael Franti, Sonny Landreth, and more.

Tickets for the Taos Solar Music Festival are still available and can be purchased online at