Here’s a tour that finally has come to Fruition.
Fruition and Goodnight, Texas will play six shows together this month in California, including one at the Crystal Bay Casino on Thursday, Aug. 25. The bands’ tours scheduled in March 2020 and January 2022 were canceled.
“It’s been a long time coming. I was starting to think God didn’t want it to happen,’ Fruition’s lead guitarist Jay Cobb Anderson said.
A five-piece Americana band featuring vocals and harmonies from Cobb, rhythm guitarist Kellen Asebroek and mandolin and guitar player Mimi Naja, Fruition is a much-loved group around Tahoe and the WinterWonderGrass festivals.
Goodnight, Texas is lesser known in these parts, but it does have a history at Crystal Bay Casino. The group’s founders, Avi Vinocur and Patrick Dyer Wolf, call themselves “a dark Americana band of historical fact and fiction.” Vinocur said he’s influenced by folklorist Alan Lomax’s collection Archive of American Folk Song at the Library of Congress.
The band debuted at CBC in a 2010 Red Room show. It opened in the Crown Room in 2013 for Rusted Root and in 2019 for Brothers Comatose.
“The ‘70s Guy Clark- Townes Van Zandt junkie country kind of vibe is popping up more and … basically championing good songwriting and Goodnight, Texas is in that vein,” Cobb said. “We really dig those guys’ stuff.”
To see Cobb onstage reveals his appreciation for the past, too. His No. 1 instrument is the same beat-up guitar he took with him from Idaho to Oregon, where he met Naja busking on Portland sidewalks. Built in the 1930s, the guitar’s origin is a mystery but Cobb said if might have been crafted by a Harmony luthier. “I bought it for $125 and have probably spent $3,000 keeping it alive,” Cobb said.
Fruition formed in 2008 as a string band but added drummer Tyler Thompson. Four of the five members are still in the band, but Asebroek is the only one who remains in Portland. Cobb lives in Seattle, electric bass guitarist Jeff Leonard lives in Tacoma, Naja lives in Atlanta and Thompson lives in Pittsburgh.
During the Covid hiatus, Fruition produced its ninth album and first live record from a single performance in the Visual Arts Collective in Boise in 2019. Although there is talk of putting “Live Vol. 1” on vinyl, the band is looking ahead.
Fruition’s latest EP, “Broken At The Break of Day” January 2020, followed “Wild As The Night” November 2019.
“2020, that was really tough for us because we had some strong momentum after releasing (the two EPs) and then the world shut down,” Cobb said. “It’s been great being able to play the songs out live but we are so very ready for a new record with new material.”
While Cobb has many Tahoe memories of being on a bandstand, his most vivid could be when he was atop a mountain cornice in 2018 for the making of a video. WinterWonderGrass founder Scotty Stoughton provided the transportation.
“A film crew was already there doing ski videos,” Cobb said. “It was my first and only time in a helicopter. We just hung off the edge of a cliff and did the thing.”
- Opener: Goodnight, Texas
- When: 8 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 25
- Where: Crystal Bay Casino Crown Room
- Tickets: $22
Below: One of the first videos produced by Tahoe Onstage, here’s Jay Cobb Anderson at the 2013 High Sierra Music Festival.