Day at night: 21-year-old singer-songwriter opens for Michael Franti & Spearhead |

Day at night: 21-year-old singer-songwriter opens for Michael Franti & Spearhead

Autumn Whitney
Zella Day opens for Michael Franti & Spearhead on Friday, Aug. 19, at 8 p.m. at MontBleu Resort Casino & Spa.
Courtesy Photo |

Zella Day is living her dream. At 21, she played Coachella for the first time and was called a top up-and-coming musician. Now on her second full-length tour, she spends months on the road at a time — currently she can be seen opening for Michael Franti & Spearhead on the group’s “Soulrocker” tour, which makes a stop at Stateline’s MontBleu Resort Casino & Spa on Friday, Aug. 19.

“I have been in Tahoe just a couple of times, but never to play a show. I’m really looking forward to it,” Day said. “All shows with Michael are very welcoming and warming. I’m guessing Tahoe is going to be very much in line with the way all other people at shows have been.”

Growing up in small-town Pinetop, Arizona, Day began playing music at age 9 and often performed at her parents’ coffee shop. In the past few years she has made appearances at festivals including Lollapalooza and iHeartRadio, in addition to making the rounds of late night television, playing on shows including “Late Night with Seth Meyers” and “Last Call with Carson Daly.” The singer-songwriter’s success all comes two years into signing her first record deal.

Day says the most challenging aspect of being on tour is getting worn out and still being expected to put on a great show for her audiences. She is thankful for the venues she gets to play with Michael Franti & Spearhead, as she can find rest in the locations.

“All the theaters and amphitheaters are either in the middle of the woods or right next to the woods. I’m definitely getting to recharge on this tour. [Franti] surrounds himself with a lot of beauty.

“I was on the road for a month straight. Thirty shows starts to wear on your body. To be able to get lost in the music in a different way, being in nature, is a completely different experience. It definitely is a re-charge, and I’m majorly looking forward to this tour,” Day added.

With every show, Day looks to create a bond with the audience and connect emotionally with others, saying she is “intoxicated by sharing music.”

She comes to Tahoe hoping to experience something new and connect with her fans.

“I played to 8,000 people opening up for [Franti] — astronomically different from a coffee shop show. It was a glimpse into my own future and what I was going to be doing with the rest of my life. It was a very comfortable place for me to be, I loved being on stage. That’s where I’m going to stay,” Day said.

Day will release a new single, “Man on the Moon,” at the end of her tour. She opens for Michael Franti & Spearhead on Friday, Aug. 19, at 8 p.m. at MontBleu Resort Casino & Spa.

For more information, visit Tickets start at $30 plus tax and fees, and are available at

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