TESLA will continue to support their latest studio album, "Into The Now", by hitting the road in early 2005 for a special acoustic tour commemorating the 15th anniversary of their groundbreaking album "Five Man Acoustical Jam". Each show on the "Five Man Acoustical Jam 2005" tour will be an evening with TESLA. There is no opening act.
Vocalist Jeff Keith, guitarist Frank Hannon, guitarist Tommy Skeoch, bass guitarist Brian Wheat and drummer Troy Luccketta will play full two-hour sets loaded with classic hits, covers and new favorites from "Into The Now", including "Caught In A Dream" and the current single "What A Shame".
This is also a fan-appreciation tour. In each city, the sponsoring radio station will conduct two special contests:
(1) A handful of winners will get to sit on stage for the entire show; and
(2) One winner will actually perform one song with the band and, in select cities, receive a Gibson electric guitar too. The radio stations will be responsible for auditioning finalists so the winner has at least basic vocal and/or instrumental skills.
Fans will also get to help select the set lists by visiting TESLA's official web site — TeslaTheBand.com — and voting for the songs they want to hear. Big hits like "Modern Day Cowboy", "Little Suzi", "Heaven's Trail (No Way Out)", "Love Song" and "Signs" are sure to earn votes alongside classic favorites that fans may not have heard in a long time and recent covers like BLACK SABBATH's "War Pigs" and QUEEN's "We Will Rock You".
This tour is a logical extension of the handful of Hard Rock Cafe acoustic promotional performances Keith, Hannon and Skeoch completed in early 2004 prior to the release of "Into The Now" and a lengthy run of "electric" dates by the full band.
The 1990 release of "Five Man Acoustical Jam" was directly responsible for launching that decade's "unplugged" craze. It all started during the Sacramento, California-based band's 1989-1990 tour for their second album, "The Great Radio Controversy". The quintet played a few acoustic songs during an appearance on the nationally syndicated radio show "Rockline" and enjoyed it so much that they performed acoustically at the Bay Area Music Awards (Bammies). The buzz was such that acoustic club shows were booked in San Francisco, Boston, New York, Philadelphia and Detroit on open dates during the summer 1990 amphitheater tour with MÖTLEY CRÜE. TESLA previewed a few of these club shows with live acoustic performances at radio stations that were promptly swamped with phone callers demanding to hear the songs again and again.
The July 2, 1990, concert at the Trocadero in Philadelphia was recorded and filmed just for the band's own archives — or so they thought. The loose, yet potent show featured solid performances of songs from their "Mechanical Resonance" and "The Great Radio Controversy" albums, playful original jams and covers of the GRATEFUL DEAD's "Truckin'", THE BEATLES' "We Can Work It Out", CREEDENCE CLEARWATER REVIVAL's "Lodi", the ROLLING STONES' "Mother's Little Helper" and, most importantly, FIVE MAN ELECTRICAL BAND's 1971 hippie anthem "Signs". It turned out so well the band demanded that this concert recording be released as their third album, a decidedly unusual step at that point in their career. Their record company at the time initially didn't want to put it out. TESLA won the battle of wills and "Five Man Acoustical Jam" (a pun on FIVE MAN ELECTRICAL BAND) went on to become a platinum-selling album, "Signs" was a smash hit single, and instinct triumphed over reason.
The Sanctuary Records release "Into The Now" was TESLA's first album of new material in 10 years. Keith, Hannon, Skeoch, Wheat and Luccketta worked intensely on the songs for nearly two years, and the ones that made the final cut had to be voted on for inclusion. Many songs were completely rewritten and re-recorded until everything was just right. The band knew it was an important album and the reward was an abundance of positive reviews and strong sales. "Into The Now" debuted in the Top 30 on the Billboard album chart and it has sold more than 130,000 copies.
More dates are forthcoming, but current "Five Man Acoustical Jam 2005" tour dates include:
Feb. 20 - Killington, VT @ Pickle Barrel
Feb. 22 - Verona, NY @ Turning Stone Casino
Feb. 23 - Poughkeepsie, NY @ The Chance
Feb. 26 - Hartford, CT @ Webster Theatre
Feb. 27 - Boston, MA @ Avalon
Mar. 01 - New York, NY @ Irving Plaza
Mar. 02 - Sayreville, NJ @ Starland Ballroom
Mar. 03 - Binghamton, NY @ Magic City
Mar. 05 - Westbury, NY @ Westbury Music Fair