Hit Men meld Motown with Santa Cruz sound at Mt. Tallac Brewery on Sunday | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Hit Men meld Motown with Santa Cruz sound at Mt. Tallac Brewery on Sunday

Tim Parsons, Lake Tahoe Action

These guys are far out.

A Motown-themed band with a penchant for psychedelic explorations, Harry and the Hit Men make their South Shore debut Sunday.

The Santa Cruz band is like a contemporary Rare Earth, a group of white players who revel in R&B.

“We’re a cover band, but we experiment with soul and dance,” said the drummer, Harry Murphy. “We play anything from Stevie Wonder to the Temptations, the Jackson 5 and the Four Tops.”

The six-piece band, which has a horn section, formed in 2005 when each of its members was attending UC-Santa Cruz.

“(Singer-guitarist) Rolf Sandmeyer was the first one to start playing this type of music,” Murphy said. “We feel like (Motown) was a very deep and powerful musical era that needs to continue be heard. But more than anything, it’s fun to play.”

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Harry and the Hit Men have all finished college and continue to live in the Santa Cruz area. They play about four shows a month and have performed in Truckee on a few occasions.

“We definitely get very experimental and try to get as far out as we can,” Murphy said. “We have unique guitar sounds and cool effects. We all use vintage equipment and pedals and instruments.”

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