TESLA may have been born in the mid-80s eruption of leather, spandex, and big hair, but this band has never been about those things. Hardly. Their bluesy, soulful sound is strongly embedded in the roots of organic, authentic, 1970s rock and roll. The same roots that produced bands that produced bands like The Allman Brothers, Grand Funk Railroad, AC/DC, Lynyrd Skynyrd, and Aerosmith.
They started out as City Kidd, until someone suggested they change their name in honor of eccentric inventor Nikola TESLA, who pioneered all things electrical – and who, like any revolutionary rock and roll band, made magic working with the basic forces of nature.
Their 1986 debut album, Mechanical Resonance, would eventually go platinum, nestled comfortably in the Top 40, and produce the iconic hard rock hits, “Modern Day Cowboy” and “Little Suzi.” Today, Mechanical Resonance lives on as one of the most successful and acclaimed debuts of the era. In 1990, TESLA helped reshape the face of modern hard rock music by stripping down to the Five Man Acoustical Jam, a loose, informal collection of their biggest hits peppered with rock and roll classics by the Beatles, Stones, and others. Not only did the format reveal just how sturdy and rock solid the band’s catalog was, it also inspired every major band after them to perform similar acoustic, storytelling shows, going back to the basics. TESLA’s daring experiment also produced their biggest hit single, a cover of Five Man Electrical Band’s “Signs.”
TESLA is a band for the ages. All ages. TESLA’s legacy is alive and well as they continue to record and sellout venues all over the world. As comfortable, rugged, and dependable as your favorite pair of boots, they endure. TESLA is a celebration of the greatest spirits of rock and roll.
There’s only one all-female hard rock band from the 80’s who sold over a million albums, had six #1 videos on MTV, and had four songs in Billboard’s Top 100. VIXEN was founded in St. Paul, MN by high-schooler guitarist Jan Kuehnemund. The desire to achieve the rock star dreams like so many before her, Jan took her group to Hollywood but soon retooled the line-up, which included, vocalist Janet Gardner, drummer Roxy Petrucci and bassist Share Ross (Pedersen).
After founding member and lead guitar player, Jan Kuehnemund passed away, Gardner, Petrucci and Ross have carried on the Vixen legacy since 2013. Rocking theaters, casinos and major festivals including M3, The Moondance Jam, Monsters of Rock Cruise, FireFest, Hard Rock Hell, The Halfway Jam, Rockin’ the Rivers, Iowa State Fair, every nook and cranny of the USA, Canada and Spain. In 2017, guitarist Britt Lightning (Alejandro Sanz, Rachel Platten) signed on to round out this extraordinary line up. Vixen consistently delivers high-energy top-notch performances that leave fans breathless and wanting more at every show. In 2019, a new chapter begins with the addition of Lorraine Lewis (Femme Fatale) stepping into lead vocals and Janet Gardner pursuing other ventures. Lewis rounds out the finely tuned lineup bringing notable Femme Fatale MTV video hits “Waiting for the Big One” and “In and Out of Love” to Vixen’s catalogue of crowd pleasers. Onward and upward the Vixen legacy shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon!