Again this year, Lagniappe Weekly and SouthSounds will team up for another edition of the Lagniappe Mobile Bay Showcase (Saturday, April 8 at noon) and the New Southern Music Showcase (Sunday, April 9 at noon), on the Hargrove Stage at Cathedral Square.

Last year’s installment brought a diverse cavalcade of up-and-coming musical acts from the Mobile Bay region to downtown Mobile, where they were judged by a panel of music industry notables for a chance to win a prize package featuring a number of exciting perks. This year’s panel of judges includes:

•Greggory Smith (Atlanta): Director Of Writer/Publisher Relations, SESAC

•Josh Brackin (Atlanta): Entertainment Attorney, Greenberg Traurig, LLP

•David Stringer (Columbia, SC): Founder of SceneSC, South Carolina’s oldest and most widely read music website

•Sabrina Nastrini (Biloxi, MS): Entertainment Manager and Booking Agent for Hard Rock Biloxi

•Corey Cochran (Biloxi, MS): Production Manager for Hard Rock Biloxi

•Tim Camp (Mobile): Owner and Host, 92.1 WZEW

•Kate Lumpkin (Mobile): Owner, Skate Mountain Records

•Billy Francis (Fairhope): Owner, Bay Sound

•Stephen Centanni (Mobile): Music writer, Lagniappe Weekly

The Lagniappe Mobile Bay Showcase will be a locals-only affair. Representing the local punk scene, A Sunday Fire will hit the crowd with tracks from its new EP “Mobtown Punk.” In recent weeks, A Sunday Fire has been touring in support of this pop-punk release.

When they first started playing together, Infant Richard & the Delta Stones hoped to bring about a musical renaissance in Mobile, much like the monk who inspired the band’s name. This six-piece group pulls inspiration from rock, blues, soul, jazz and jam music. With a new album on the streets, the band hopes to sway judges with their freshest material. This band’s live shows tend to be eclectic and electrifying.

Also appearing will be Party at the Moontower. This Mississippi band prides itself on concentrating on “songwriting and arranging” for the live setting. The end result is an attractive brand of modern rock that tends to skirt the mainstream. This musical formula has won them fans along the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

The Red Clay Strays are one of the newer acts appearing in the Lagniappe Mobile Bay Showcase. This group prides themselves on an original sound with influences ranging from Motown to classic country. Their original songs and musicianship have not gone unnoticed: Mobile’s label Skate Mountain Records recently added this group of talented young musicians to its lineup of Alabama artists.

Azalea City supergroup Slide Bayou will also perform in the showcase. Slide Bayou’s lineup includes music scene veterans Lee Yankie, Ryan Balthrop, Harrison McInnis, Marc Hendrix and Winter Baynes. Yankie, Balthrop and McInnis are accomplished local artists whose combined musical backgrounds should make for a set filled with soulful jams.

From O’Daly’s Irish Pub to The Hangout, Yeah, Probably has been entertaining crowds with original music from an upcoming EP. Yeah, Probably’s members met in their college jazz band and cite chemistry as the source of their creative productivity. This chemistry will shine throughout a set of soulful funk and R&B.

The Lagniappe New Southern Music Showcase will pit the judges’ choice from the Mobile Bay Showcase against three regional acts. One, Blackwater Brass, will be traveling from Ocean Springs, Mississippi. This 10-piece specializes in funky brass sounds but isn’t afraid to step into other musical worlds.

Nick & the Ovorols were born in Chicago but are now based out of Pensacola. This trio will bring a dose of blues-rock influenced by classic sounds. Expect a glorious aural and emotional rollercoaster.

Post Pluto will represent Pensacola in the Lagniappe New Southern Music Showcase. These Florida musicians pride themselves on their versatile repertoire of jam rock. Post Pluto has also built the reputation for providing memorable live performances, quickly turning new listeners into fans. Its set will include cuts from its most recent effort, “New Horizons.”

After the Lagniappe New Southern Music Showcase concludes, judges will select one band to receive a prize package any up-and-coming band would welcome: three days of studio time with Rick Hirsch at his Studio H20, complete with accommodations; a $500 gift card to Andy’s Music; and a $200 gift card to Callaghan’s Irish Social Club. Touring requires gas, and with this in mind, Lagniappe Weekly is adding a $100 gift card. Finally, Hard Rock Hotel & Casino will give the chosen band an opportunity to play the Biloxi venue.