Lavish Green turns 16, still chasing the dream |

Lavish Green turns 16, still chasing the dream

Tim Parsons

Chris Sanchez gave his location during a telephone call to Lake Tahoe Action: “I’m on Cloud Nine.”

More specifically, the bandleader of Lavish Green was in the town of Weed, near Mount Shasta. The quartet was recording its sixth studio album at RadioStar Studios, which has vintage equipment and is run by acclaimed sound engineer-producer Sylvia Massy.

Lavish Green, which celebrates its 16th anniversary Thursday, June 30, in the Flight Deck at Lake Tahoe Airport, is still pursuing its dream. It’s been a Tahoe and regional favorite for a long time, but national attention has always been the ultimate goal. Massy wants to make the dream a reality.

“She said, ‘You guys have been doing this for 16 years – all you need is the recognition,'” Sanchez said.

Massy has worked with Tool, System of the Down, Prince, Tom Petty, the Red Hot Chili Peppers and engineered for Rick Rubin.

“I’ve learned patience from her,” Sanchez said. “By watching her, I’ve learned so much about different things about equipment. I kind of feel like a little kid. Rob (Wheeler’s) bass tones are going through an amp that was on tour with the (Rolling) Stones in 1969.”

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Lavish Green hopes to have a five-song EP released in time for an Aug. 13 show at Whiskey Dick’s Saloon.

“It’s an absolute honor and kind of miracle for us to be here,” said guitarist Joel Gruneich. “The product we are listening to is something of that of which we have never heard from our band. It’s mind blowing.”

Sanchez, Wheeler and Gruneich have been together 15 years. Drummer Paul Emnas replaced John Shafer on July 8, 2010.

“We’re spending two weeks here,” Wheeler said. “It’s really hard with our families but this is just an opportunity that couldn’t be missed. We’re not getting any younger. We’re really excited that this could propel us another step toward our goal.”