Who wants to be a quarter-millionaire?

When the young Atlanta-area rock band Ultraphonic recently won a $250,000 record contract from the Garageband.com website, their producer/spokesman Bryan Holmes was understandably pleased. "It was pretty cool," he says cheerfully. "We had five songs on their site, and all five made the Top 100 — three were in the Top 40. This is out of 40,000 songs."

But Holmes was also cautious. "They flew out and had a meeting with us last week. They're very knowledgeable and reputable people, but they're still negotiating with several major labels for distribution. We also want to make sure they have an in-house promotion department. In the meantime, we're talking to several other major labels."

That quarter million dollars, Holmes reveals, would be partly tied up in pressing costs and promotion, "and none of that has been determined yet. When they get that together, we'll be that much closer to signing."

If Holmes sounds unusually business-savvy, it's because he learned a great deal about the industry during his tenure in the Producers, an Atlanta pop band that enjoyed several hits during the early '80s new wave boom. He's currently preparing re-mastered CDs of the Producers' first two albums, with an expected release this October through One Way Records.

But Ultraphonic's new CD, originally scheduled for late summer, will now take longer. "It won't be released until early next year," says Holmes. "We may go cut a few more songs and put at least one or two of the new ones on the disc. But whether through Garageband.com or elsewhere, it's gonna be out right after the first of the year."

Ultraphonic plays an Atlantis conference showcase at the Variety Playhouse, Sat., Aug. 12.