In advance of new album, Tesla plays Greensburg’s Palace Theatre
It looks to be another good year for Tesla.
There’s just no stopping the original Sacramento hard rock band from the ‘80s that has sold more than 25 million albums and filled concert auditoriums to sold-out crowds in its three decades plus together.
Just as Tesla’s Winter 2019 tour starts to wind down after a month of concerts in February, its spring 2019 tour kicks off the end of March. And fellow rockers British band Def Leppard recently announced that Tesla will be joining them on their recently announced Canadian Summer Tour that opens July 12 in Halifax.
Palace tour stop
Greensburg’s The Palace Theatre is one of the tour stops on Feb. 12, in what looks to be another sellout show in advance of Tesla releasing its eight studio album, “Shock,” on March 8.
The recording features 12 new studio tracks produced and co-written by Phil Collen of Def Leppard and follows Tesla’s 2014 “Simplicity” and 2016 “Mechanical Resonance Live!” releases. Collen also produced a new song, “Save That Goodness,” on their 2016 CD.
Each ticket purchased online for any of the U.S. dates on Tesla’s “Shock USA Tour” will include a copy of Tesla’s new album.
In addition, a Meet and Greet VIP upgrade package is available for the Palace Theatre concert for $175 in addition to a show ticket, which includes access to Tesla’s pre-show sound check, a signed photo, a commemorative merchandise item and photo op with the band.
Their Greensburg concert presented by Drusky Entertainment and Kirschner Concerts also will feature half-hour sets each by two New York City-based rock bands, The Cringe and Year of the Locust.
Tesla drummer Troy Luccketta, who now lives with his family in Nashville, says he switched coasts — from California to Tennessee — not so much for the music, but for the “quality of life” there.
“Music has been the by-product of the move and I’ve met some wonderful people. Nashville is growing really fast,” he said in a phone call during a rehearsal break the night before Tesla’s Winter Tour kickoff at Mystic Lake Casino in Prior Lake, Minn.
With four out of its original five members still playing and touring together, Tesla has remained a band committed to its audience, many of whom have followed the group since it started.
“It all comes down to hardcore fans,” Luccketta said.
Their dedication to continuing to belt out the same quality of blue-collar hard rock sounds has been a driving force for the band, according to its drummer.
“It’s what has sustained us and always kept us honest and true,” he said. “It’s not about jumping on the bandwagon of something different. It’s no frills, just us guys staying real true to our music. For some awesome reason, we survived.”
Not only survived, but thrived.
Besides their deep friendship with Def Leppard members that has resulted in playing and making music together, Tesla has shared stages with Styx, Deep Purple, Cheap Trick, Joan Jett and REO Speedwagon and has performed headline shows the past several years consistently.
They’re also scheduled to be among 40 rock bands on the 2019 Monsters of Rock Cruise Feb. 24-March 1 from Miami, Fla., to Jamaica.
Tesla has a fan following on a “non-official Tesla page” on Facebook to rally support for the band’s induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The group has been eligible for the honor since 2011.
In addition to Luccketta on drums, Tesla includes Brian Wheat, bass, keyboards, piano; Frank Hannon, guitar, keyboards, piano, organ, bass, mandolin, harmonica; and Jeff Keith, lead vocals.
Aside from his music, Luccketta is involved in his own campaign, Troy Shows Up, to help high school students make good decisions through his own personal experience. He’s lined up to speak at a half-dozen schools in Chicago in March to share his message of overcoming addiction. He hopes his accomplishment of being 25 years sober can help young people.
“We’ve all made bad choices,” he said. “I’m super transparent. I don’t get into any war stories. I make it fun, play some music the students might like, and keep it light since it’s heavy subject matter. I’m excited about it.”
Candy Williams is a Tribune-Review
Candy Williams is a Tribune-Review contributing writer.