Joan Jett drops a ‘Cherry Bomb’ on Minden, Nevada

Tahoe Onstage / Pheonix Gruneich

Joan Jett celebrates the red, white, blue and Blackhearts on July 4 at the Carson Valley Inn.
Pheonix Gruneich / Tahoe Onstage photos

Joan Jett and her band played their hearts out on Independence Day for an appreciative audience in TJ’s Corral at the Carson Valley Inn.

The show was pure, dirty guitar-led rock ‘n’ roll without much chit chat. In contrast to the red, white and blue dressed crowd at last year’s July 4th concert with Ted Nugent, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts were decked out in black from heads to their toes.

At the age of 60, she puts younger generations to shame with her abilities and punk-rock attitude.

When she played the iconic anthem “I Love Rock ‘N’ Roll,” concertgoers rushed the stage, many recording the moment on their phones. Joan Jett’s attitude and that of the band intensified by the crowd energy and their performance just kicked off after that, and the crowd stayed in front of the stage the rest of the show.

“We are going to cherish the memories of this night for the rest of our lives,” said newlywed Trish Chavez. “Seeing Joan Jett was a dream come true for me. She played such an amazing show and I am still reeling in excitement.”

Radio personality Max Volume (Glenn Bailey) was another head-banger in the crowd:

“In a raw, uncut, no B.S. fuzzy guitar humbucker performance; this Rock n’ Roll Hall of Famer, is the real deal. A woman who kicked the door down on the boys’ club that was rock music, she paved the way for other women to do the same. She … won the crowd, worked them up into a frenzy and left the stage forever changing the Carson Valley.”

The musicianship was flawless. The only slip up occurred when Joan Jett, a native of Pennsylvania, made the common mistake heard from East Coasters. She pronounced the Silver State “Ne-vaah-duh.”

“I knew I was going to do that,” she laughed. “We even had a talk backstage about not doing it.”

The Blackhearts included keyboardist Kenny Laguna, whose time with the bandleader goes back to The Runaways, which had five albums in the 1970s. Dougie Needles was the second guitarist, Hal B. Selzer was on bass and Michael McDermott on drums.

People will be talking about this show for some time. Thanks to Carson Valley Inn for bringing the rock! Joan Jet was inspiring to me. All I want to do now is practice guitar.

– Pheonix Gruneich

About Pheonix Gruneich

Photojournalist Pheonix Gruneich is a native of Southern California where her love of music began. She moved to Tahoe when she was 16. She now resides in the Carson Valley. She is a lover of arts and, most of all, live music!


  1. Phoenix. Leave to you to always tale outstanding photos. From Lavish Green to Joan Jett. Mad respect girl! Much love Kaeli Nash and Ezekiel McGary.

  2. Nice article, I couldn’t make the show so thanks for covering like I was there…

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