All smiles as Bluesdays open summer run at Squaw Valley

Clare Foster / Tahoe Onstage

The Village at Squaw Valley is packed for the Bluesdays opener with the Blues Monsters and friends.

Blues is Chuck Dunn’s business and business is booming.

Dunn and his band, The Blues Monsters, opened the 10th and greatest season of Bluesdays on Tuesday in The Village at Squaw Valley.

“When I saw the lineup I said, ‘Wow, are you kidding me!’ ” Dunn said. “Joe Louis Walker, Debbie Davies, Chris Cain, Curtis Salgado. These are the top dogs right now.”

The North-Shore based Blues Monsters, who formed 27 years ago, opened Bluesdays for the fifth year in a row. The remaining 12 Tuesdays will be filled by national touring blues bands.

Dunn has been wearing out guitar strings since retiring four months ago from his day job as a dry waller. On Sunday, he was resting after playing four shows in three days. In addition to being a member of The Blues Monsters, Dunn plays in duos with Johnny Bias and Cowboy Steve.

Tahoe Onstage

Kandy Xander

The Secret Weapon, who is South Shore keyboardist Terry Ogg, and the Groove Foundry horn section joined The Blues Monsters for Bluesdays and will play at Friday’s Carson Valley Music, Food & Brew Fest in Minden, Nevada.

“Groove Foundry are some of the hardest working musicians I know,” Dunn said. “We can throw songs at them and a week later Todd Mather, the sax player, will text back, “OK, we’re ready. Let’s rehearse them.”

Kandy Xander and Matt Reardon also jumped onstage at Bluesdays to sing along with the Blues Monsters.

Each week, Dunn features the music of the Bluesdays’ artists on his radio show, “Choose Blues Hour with Chuckie Dunn,” which airs Mondays at 7 p.m. on 101.5 KTKE Truckee Tahoe Radio. The show is repeated Saturdays at midnight.

The Blues Monsters are guitarists Dunn and Barry Slayton and the rhythm section of Tom Barnes and Michael Overhauser. The Groove Foundry horns are Mather, Jen Campbell and Brian “Nak” Nakagawa.

Related stories:
Schnebelens break out from Trambled Under Foot, Nick to debut at Bluesdays.

Blues Monsters, Buddy Emmer, Chris Cain, Nancy Wright, Mighty Mike Schermer at Carson Valley Music, Food & Brew Fest.

  • Bluesdays
    The Village at Squaw Valley
    6 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesdays
    June 12: The Blues Monsters
    June 19: Nick Schnebelen Band
    June 26: Mark Hummel’s Golden State / Lone Star Revue
    July 3: Curtis Salgado
    July 10: Debbie Davies
    July 17: Ron Artis II & The Truth
    July 24: Albert Castiglia
    July 31: Joe Louis Walker
    Aug. 7: Kenny Neal
    Aug. 14: Chris Cain
    Aug. 21: Terry Hanck
    Aug. 28: Coco Montoya
    Sept. 4: Cedric Burnside Project

    Tahoe Onstage

    Chuck Dunn and Matt Reardon are onstage at the first Bluesdays show of the year.
    Clare Foster / Tahoe Onstage

    Tahoe Onstage

    The Secret Weapon Terry Ogg does a peace.
    Conrad Buedel / Tahoe Onstage

    Tahoe Onstage

    Conrad Buedel / Tahoe Onstage

About Tim Parsons

Tim Parsons is the editor of Tahoe Onstage who first moved to Lake Tahoe in 1992. Before starting Tahoe Onstage in 2013, he worked for 29 years at newspapers, including the Tahoe Daily Tribune, Eureka Times-Standard and Contra Costa Times. He was the recipient of the 2011 Keeping the Blues Alive award for Journalism.

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