Fantastic, incredible, mesmerizing: New Monsoon hits the beach at Tahoe City

Clare Foster

Phil Ferlino and New Monsoon treated Tahoe City with a moving performance Sunday, Aug. 30.
Tahoe Onstage photos provided by Clare Foster

One of the many great things about New Monsoon is that it always puts on a great show. Beautiful instrumentals roaming around and gathering together, vocals that resonate deeply, amazing songwriting and singing, and so much energy. And the players all care so much about one another and about the music they share with all of us.

New Monsoon often headlines at the Fillmore in its hometown San Francisco, and it recorded its 2014 album, “Diamonds and Clay,” at Bob Weir’s TRI studio in San Rafael. The band graced the stage Sunday at Tahoe City’s Commons Beach. It was the second to last concert of the series, and it was a beautiful breezy Tahoe day in late August, where the summer days are shorter, but lovely in its splendor. Last year in August when New Monsoon was to take to the stage, there was indeed a storm, a monsoon-like rainstorm, and the show was canceled.

Before this show, I hung out with the band and we laughed about 2014 show being as canceled because of the weather. We all looked up and then out toward the lake, and concurred that there was no rain in sight!

The boys were happy to be in Tahoe, dressed casually in jeans and nice short-sleeve button down shirts, Bo Carper with a Western flare. They put on one heck of a great show, playing two full, dynamic sets. The crowd loved them, danced and smiled and became emotional when Carper dedicated a song, “The Other Side,” to dear and beloved soundman and friend Blake Beeman, who passed away 2014.

The first set was fantastic. Jeff Miller ripped some incredible guitar licks, Carper mesmerizing the crowd with his voice and slide guitar, and Phil Ferlino on those keys — my goodness, his energy is never ending. Marshall Harrell played the bass and Michael Pinkham the drums, and there you have it, one fine group of talented and kind musicians sharing the love of song in our beloved Tahoe.

The first set
“Song for Maria”
“Next Best Thing”
“Are you Listening”
“The Other Side”
“Modus Operandi”
“No Reservations”
“Light of Day”
“Mountain Air”

The second set was equally fantastic.

“Time Won’t Wait” had the crowd singing along, and it was one of my favorite moments of the afternoon and evening. At one point, Miller said, ‘Our name is New Monsoon, and you know what a monsoon is.” He asked that we all pray for some rain, some much-needed rain to come our way, and to the entire West Coast, bringing us water to fill the lake and put out fires raging on the West Coast.

New Monsoon played a two-song encore, and the crowd loved it, loved the band, the music and the surrounding energy. Daylight faded and most of the concertgoers scattered and headed home, while others watched the sky turn a light purple.

Come back soon boys, and thank you.

Second set
“Ravens Eye”
“Blue Queens”
“From the Cliffsides”
“Time Won’t Wait”
“Bron y Aur”
“Eminence Front”
“Daddy Long Legs”

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About Clare Foster

Clare Foster finds some sort of balance in the place she has called home for 27 years, the North and West shores of Lake Tahoe. If she isn't out listening to and photographing live music, she is either down by the lake or wandering in the woods taking photos or, working on a new book. Check out Clare's website.

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