Achilles Wheel rolls to Valhalla’s Grand Lawn

Achilles Wheel plays Wednesday, July 21, on the Valhalla Grand Lawn.

Achilles Wheel is spinning again.

The Northern California band will jam to South Lake Tahoe’s spectacular venue at the Tallac Historic Site, the Valhalla Grand Lawn. Part of a summertime series, the show starts at 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, July 21.

Table seating is sold out but he lawn outside the table area is free. Walking or cycling to the show is encouraged. Concertgoers can bring chairs, blankets and picnic dinner.

The five-piece band formed in Placerville about 12 years ago.

“We all grew up on the same kind of music, so there is a common language,” said guitarist-singer Paul Kamm. “We are different stylistically and in our hearts we have different things that we feel but we are bonded by a desire to be free form with our music.
“We started with a song and we allow each other to play whatever it is we want to play without ever having to play the same notes every night.”

During the live show lockdown of 2020, Achilles Wheel released a triple CD, “Live on Wesley’s Road.” The title and spirt of the live recordings from 2019 honor KVMR disc jockey Wesley Robertson, who dedicated his life to supporting live music and streaming concerts for radio.

Kamm said more than 25 hours of live audio was edited into the three CDs.

The extended length “gives more of a heartbeat of what we like to do as a band, from folky rock stuff to getting way out there with experimental jamming.”

Kamm, who has a background in world beat music, plays mostly rhythm guitar. Johnny Mojo, experienced in blues, bluegrass and classic rock, plays lead. They combine their diversity in their songwriting.

Mark McCartney plays drums and the newest member is keyboardist Ben Jacobs. Shelby Snow plays a six-string electric bass guitar. His style has been compared to The Who’s John Entwistle.

“He plays from his heart and he plays wild and free,” Kamm said. “Maybe that’s why he has so many strings to keep up with what his hands are doing.”

The Achilles Wheel performance is part of a five-show series on the Grand Lawn. The first concert was James Garner’s Tribute to Johnny Cash. Joe O’Hara and his wife were in attendance.

“We’re here on a scouting mission,” O’Hara said. “We are coming back to see Achilles Wheel.”

  • Achilles Wheel
    Where:
    Valhalla Grand Lawn, Tallac Historic Site, South Lake Tahoe
    When: 4:30-6:30 p.m. Wednesday, July 21
    Tickets: Table seating is sold out. The lawn outside the table area is free. Walking or cycling to the show is encouraged. Bring a chair, blanket and picnic.
    Website: https://valhallatahoe.showare.com/
  • More shows:
    Wednesday, July 28: The Tom Rhodes Band
    Wednesday, Aug. 11: Grateful Bluegrass Boys
    Wednesday, Aug. 18: Earles of Newtown
Tahoe Onstage
Jonny “Mojo” Flores has a red beard and plays the blues.
Tahoe Onstage
Shelby Snow plays six-string bass.
Tahoe Onstage
Paul Kamm writes songs, plays rhythm guitar, gives interviews.
Tahoe Onstage
Achilles Wheel played the 2017 Hangtown Music Festival.
Michael Smyth / 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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