Giddy up: Bluesdays returns with smiles, ‘Monster’ sounds

The Blues Monsters and guests welcome 700 friends to Palisades Tahoe’s Bluesdays 2022. Tahoe Onstage photos by Tim Parsons

What is the sound of 700 people smiling? Bluesdays.

The weekly summertime Tuesday show at The Village at Palisades Tahoe opened with the happiest ambiance of local cheer in the crowd and upon a new stage large enough to fit The Blues Monsters and some talented friends.

“After every song the crowd would just go crazy,” said Blues Monsters guitarist Chuckie Dunn, whose voice was in fine fettle, singing into a new Sennheiser condenser microphone.

Backlit Barry Slayton looks sharp.

Guitarist Barry Slayton has new stuff, too: A Paul Reed Smith guitar and a sharkskin suit with razor-sharp creases.

A band that began 31 years ago doesn’t need a set list, so there were off the cuff renditions of songs by Buddy Miles, Tower of Power, Sly and the Family Stone, Elvin Bishop and, closing the show with “Tenth Avenue Freeze Out” by Bruce Springsteen — When the change was made uptown and the Groove Monsters Horns joined the band, Jen Campbell, Brian “Nak” Nakagawa and Todd Mather blew the crowd away. Onstage guests included singers Kendal Naughton and Kandy Xander and young keyboardist Ashton Kates.

Honey Vixen — Nicole Gaich and Kandy Xander — makes Bluesdays history.

For the first time, Bluesdays had an opening band, Honey Vixen, a rock duo of Kandy Xander and Nicole Gaich, whose hair matched perfectly with the Bluesdays banner.

“I can’t tell you enough how appreciative we are to be the only local band to play,” Dunn said. “We’ve opened every year. When I see the posters and all the names, Chris Cain and everybody else, and our names on there as well, it’s very gratifying.”

The opening show crowd was filled with year-round residents, happy to be back at Bluesdays, which was shortened in 2021 due to wildfires’ smoke and completely canceled in 2020 due to Covid-19. Folks who have been away are reminded to bring their own chairs.

Next week, perhaps Bluesdays’ most popular artist, Chris Cain. will perform.

“That little gig at Squaw Valley has been one of the real joys of my playing days,” Cain told Tahoe Onstage. “I’ve never played anywhere where everybody’s so happy. My band is like a bunch of flowers and if you put water on them, they just bloom. Those folks there are just so receptive to stuff. My band just played their brains out when they’d go there.”

-Tim Parsons

Bluesdays
When:
6 p.m. Tuesdays
Where: The Village at Palisades Tahoe
June 21: Chris Cain
June 28: Mark Hummel Band’s Night at The Fillmore
July 5: Laurie Morvan Band
July 12: Terry Hanck
July 19: Dennis Jones Band
July 26: Albert Castiglia
Aug. 2: Aki Kumar
Aug. 9: JC Smith
Aug. 16: Studebaker John & The Hawks
Aug. 23: Eddie 9V
Aug. 30: Roy Rogers & The Delta Rhythm Kings

The Blues Monsters with guest singer Kendal Naughton pose for a photo before taking the stage.
Chuck Dunn and Todd Mather funk up Bluesdays.
Paige displays uncommon restraint by not eating pizza.
Jen Cambell busts a move in between notes.
Preshow: Chango O’Brien battles internet connections to dial in the sound.
Caution: Mountainside contains Bluesdays.
Dunn eyes aggressive drummer Michael Overhauser.
The Reno Blues Society donates $2,000 before the show.
No more changing guitars between songs for sliding Barry Slayton and his new PRS.
Roomful of blues and Michael Overhauser.
Honey Vixen plays a three-song opening set.
Chris Cain returns to Bluesdays next week. Tim Parsons / Tahoe Onstage

ABOUT Tim Parsons

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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EVENTS CALENDAR

Calendar of Events

S Sun

M Mon

T Tue

W Wed

T Thu

F Fri

S Sat

4 events,

1 event,

3 events,

-

Bluesdays: Aki Kumar

-

Valhalla: Tahoe iMPRoV Players

2 events,

1 event,

2 events,

-

Sundays at Midnight

1 event,

-

Mustache Harbor

2 events,

1 event,

2 events,

2 events,

1 event,

1 event,

4 events,

-

Iconic Women in Music

-

TFT

6 events,

1 event,

3 events,

-

Bluesdays: Studebaker John

-

Paul Thorn

2 events,

0 events,

1 event,

2 events,

-

No Duh

2 events,

1 event,

4 events,

-

Bluesdays: Eddie 9V

-

Dopapod

-

Terry Hanck

2 events,

1 event,

1 event,

2 events,

4 events,

1 event,

4 events,

-

Steel Pulse

2 events,

1 event,

4 events,

-

Greg Golden Band

1 event,

-

Petty Theft

TFT

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