A good friend will visit Blake’s Tree on Saturday, when Carolyn Wonderland appears for a seated Crown Room show in the Crystal Bay Casino.
Blake Beeman was the sound engineer for the venue’s first thousand shows. After he died in 2014, a tree was placed next to the sound booth to ensure his memory will always be there.
“I love coming to visit the tree and catching up on Blake tales with his tribe of besties,” said Wonderland, a multi-instrumentalist blues artist from Austin, Texas. “We love stopping by to play at the CBC and that speaks volumes of Blake. Casinos are not usually favorite stops, but Blake made it a real music room.”
Before the Crystal Bay Casino became a music hub, Beeman was known at Lake Tahoe for providing the sound at the Humpty’s, Elevations venues, and the Sunday concert series on Commons Beach.
“We’d follow him anywhere he went,” Wonderland wrote in an email to Tahoe Onstage. “I am thankful to have known Blake, to get to make music with him and be friends for so many years. I play one of his lapsteels at home.”
In a show to raise funds to help pay Beeman’s medical bills, Wonderland performed in the Crown Room in January 2014 with Beeman and his band the Beer Gardners. Beeman died of cancer six months later.
This week, Wonderland releases a studio album, “Moon Goes Missing.”
“Ty Taylor from Vintage Trouble makes a guest appearance on a song we co-wrote, ‘Hellfire Bitters,” ’ Wonderland wrote. “Guy Forsyth guests on a reworking of Bob Dylan’s ‘Brand New Leopard Skin Pillbox Hat.’ The additional verses on “Pillbox” were from 2004 when Bob asked me to write response verses. I did! It was fun! Figured I should get around to recording it before it fades from my fingers.
“The band (Kevin Lance, Bobby Perkins, and myself) was joined by the aforementioned Ty Taylor and Guy Forsyth; Shelley King, Cole El-Saleh, Shelley Cox and Oliver Steck on some tracks. We recorded at Ray Benson’s Bismeaux Studios with Sam Seifert & Steve Mazur.
Wonderland usually performs in a trio with Bobby Perkins on bass and Kevin Lance on drums. But on this tour, there will be a fourth member, Shelley King, who sings and plays acoustic guitar.
Wonderland will be back in the area in three weeks for the High Sierra Music Festival.
- Carolyn Wonderland
When: 9 p.m. Saturday, June 10
Where: Crystal Bay Casino Crown Room
Tickets: $18 in advance or $20 on the day of the show
Red Room after-party: Disco Terrorist & Sir Funksalot