“For one great day, June 20th, 1998 to be exact, all the stars, planets and whatever other space junk is floating around in our atmosphere all lined up perfectly….and it was called GEARFEST. The place was Tantogarden in Stockholm Sweden, and the event was a big party celebrating the ongoing transcontinental love fest between Scandanavian rock and roll and Gearhead Magazine. The American muscle cars rolled in, the cold Swedish beer flowed freely, and the bands rocked like it was the last day on Earth! ”
These words were written by Gearhead founder Mike LaVella in the liner notes to the 2001 CD compilation Gearfest (now long out of print). After several more festivals in the early 2000s in Sweden and Austin, TX, Gearfest was put on hold as we struggled with the challenges of a growing small business.
Gearfest once again saw the light of day in 2015 to an overwhelming turnout of enthusiastic fans. Much to my surprise and delight, seven of the original partygoers from that iconic day in 1998 flew over from Sweden to join in the revived celebration. Click here to see pictures!
Gearfest 2016 is right around the corner and it looks to be another day when all the space junk and stars align. Sept. 24, 2016 is the date, 6 pm is the time and The Blue Lamp is the place. If you drive a hot rod, get there early for Rock Star parking in front of the club and across the street at the host hotel The Red Lion. Fans can view the cars before doors open at 6:30 pm. Rolling Rock, our beer sponsor for the evening, will be on hand with surprises and cheap beer to keep the fans lubricated. Event sponsors Sacramento Tattoo and Piercing, one of Sacramento’s oldest tattoo shops and Asphalt Rodeo, an Elk Grove based hot rod and customs builder will be hanging out talking tattoos and hot rods.
BAND LINE UP:
7pm The Troublemakers -- Sacramento-based garage-punkers kick things off!
8 pm The Roxy Suicide -- a glam-pop punk band from Fort Collins, CO (featuring Dave Mansfield from The Mansfields)
9 pm Ms. Gearhead Contest (see below for description and entry details)
10 pm Red Planet -- the long-loved Bay Area power pop outfit performing for the first time after a fifteen year hiatus
11 pm Leesa G -- former front-woman of the 80s punk band The Creamers performing several Creamers songs with The Rankoutsiders backing her
11:30 Pat Todd and the Rankoutsiders -- bluesy balls-out country-punk from Los Angeles
For more information about the bands and schedule, click here!
So what, you ask, is a Ms. Gearhead Contest? Held as a fundraiser for the non-profit Elk Grove, CA based Chicks in Crisis, who provide support and assistance to young women facing pregnancy and child-rearing issues and sponsored by Beautiful Disaster Cosmetics, any woman can enter for $20 with all proceeds going to Chicks in Crisis.
Each woman gets 3 minutes to share why shy represents the qualities of Ms. Gearhead after which the judges will choose the next Ms. Gearhead. The winner gets a feature on the Gearhead website as well as gifts valued at over $300. In addition, raffle tickets will be sold for $1 with half the cash prize going to Chicks in Crisis and the other half to one lucky raffle winner. Click here for more information and advance entry. Contestants can also enter day of the show. To see pictures of last year’s contest and winner click here.
A limited number of rooms at The Red Lion Hotel have been reserved at the discounted rate of $79 plus taxes and fees for partygoers. It’s right across the street from the Blue Lamp which makes getting to the show really easy. Plus the rooms have microwaves, a fridge and guests get a free breakfast the next morning. There’s a pool there too, so you can enjoy some sun and playtime before the show starts! For more information and to reserve a room, call Michelle today at 916-897-2451 or send an email.
Free posters, goody bags and digital download cards plus a full Gearhead merch table will round out the evening. Food will be available for purchase from Dave’s Dawgs so no one will have to miss any of the shindig!
Please join Gearhead for a kick-ass punk rock fueled fun time. Make tracks to the Blue Lamp. It is the ONLY place to be Saturday Sept. 24, 2016.
Keepin’ the rubber on the road with Lots of love,
Rock 'n' Roll/Automotive Journalist, Influencer, Editor and Publisher of Gearhead Magazine,