South Lake Tahoe’s new and gnarly rock band Strange Weather will make its first appearance in Harrah’s Lake Tahoe after Sunday’s fireworks show.
The up-and-coming band recently landed a last-minute offer to play the Center Stage on the casino floor on Sunday night. Center Stage is the venue for Arthur “Arty the Party” Hervey on weekends and the Buddy Emmer Band’s Tuesday night blues jams.
“We just got a phone call a few days ago, asked if we wanted to do it,” front man Vinny Berry said.
Strange Weather is Berry (vocals, guitar), John “Chili” Munroe (vocals, guitar), Todd Christensen (bass), and Jon Gardner (drums).
The quartet came together out of the South Shore music scene over the last year, and has been hard at work both in studio and onstage. Their first summer together has included appearances at Homewood Resort, headlining a benefit at Lakeview Commons, and a number of other shows, such as last weekend’s show at South Shore’s American Legion.
“That was amazing,” Berry said of the Sunday night concert at the Legion. “That was almost kind of a last minute too, not as last minute as this. We’d only had it on the books for a few weeks, and just put it up on Facebook a week before.”
Even so, the singer estimated that there were upwards of 120 concertgoers that evening. It’s the second time this summer that Strange Weather packed a local venue on a Sunday night, the first being July 19 at Whiskey Dick’s Saloon.
“I saw a lot of people buying beers and getting wild,” he said.
Apparently folks had a good time. More than a half-dozen cars were still in the parking lot the next morning, and the band had provided a shuttle service from Stateline before the show. It was a ’70s party and concertgoers dressed the part, although many of them wore tie-dye attire that looked more like the 1960s.
The Harrah’s show marks the most prominent stage that the band has played to date. The band will be on stage from 9 p.m. until 12:45 a.m.
“This is going to be our longest gig, so we’re working on some new covers; we call ‘em dummy covers, something we can learn in a couple goes at it, or something we all know,” Berry said, noting classics like Jimi Hendrix’s “Voodoo Chile,” along with newer tunes like “Gold on the Ceiling” by the Black Keys.
Covers are hardly Strange Weather’s focus, however. The band is putting the finishing touches onto a 13-track introductory album of original songs, recorded over several sessions at Play Your Own Music in Carson City. Munroe and Christensen are wrapping up some final cuts this week, with the goal of having a finished product before early October, when the band will head out on its first tour.
While currently working on booking the latter half of the tour, Strange Weather is looking to make a Central- and Southern-California run for its first time on the road, with shows in San Diego, Los Angeles, Bakersfield, San Francisco, Sacramento and more. More information will be available shortly, Berry said.
With such notable success in less than a year (albeit one of substantial effort), Strange Weather is clearly on the right track.
“It’s amazing, it tells me that we’re doing something right,” Berry said
Related story: Strange Weather tears up Whiskey Dick’s Saloon. LINK