Celebrating its fifth year as Nashville’s most heated and entertaining band competition, the Road to Bonnaroo contest, co-sponsored by BMI, Mercy Lounge, Yuengling, Nashville Scene, and the Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival, will pit 24 bands with Nashville ties head-to-head for three coveted slots at the 2013 Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival, slated for June 13-16 in Manchester, Tennessee. The Road to Bonnaroo will take place over three designated nights of BMI’s free 8 off 8th showcase, with eight bands performing each night. Venue partner Mercy Lounge will host the live-action litmus tests, scheduled for February 25, March 25, and April 15.To select each evening’s top contender, an industry panel comprising local music journalists, bloggers, and 8 off 8th hosts will contribute one half of the verdict, while fan voting through onsite ballots will determine the other half.The first round of finalists for round one of the 2013 Road to Bonnaroo competition will be announced on January 21, 2013.Fly Golden Eagle, Wild Cub, and By Lightning! claimed last year’s slots. Ultimately, in addition to promoting the town’s next crop of fresh faces, The Road to Bonnaroo competition uniquely celebrates the city’s homegrown and transplanted indie sounds—and thrusts the freshest faces, ready for their close-ups, out of the roost.Check out photos and video from last years competition on BMI.com/bonnaroo.