Blue Turtle Seduction to play Downstairs |

Blue Turtle Seduction to play Downstairs

Greg Marshall, Of the Record staff

Jay Seals doesn’t remember how his band, Blue Turtle Seduction, got its name. But Seals, the lead vocalist and guitar slinger for the five-piece band, urges fans to figure it out for themselves.

Blue Turtle is scheduled to play a free show July 30 at Downstairs nightclub, located on the corner of Heber and Main Street. Doors open at 8 p.m.

After recording three studio albums, including the recently released "13 Floors," the band wants to compile an album of live tracks. In addition to original tunes, Seals and company perform covers from Scissor Sisters and Billy Idol during live performances. "We’re known for our live shows," Seals said. "It’s a whole different beast."

It is a sonic ‘beast’ most will have to hear to understand. The group features Glenn Stewart on harmonica and pan flute, Christian Zupancic on violin and mandolin, Stephen Seals on bass, and Adam Navone on drums.

If the band’s name is something of an enigma, so, too is its style of music. Seals describes Blue Turtle as a combination of post-grunge American music and gypsy ska.

The quintet formed while working at a conference in the Tahoe Desolation Wilderness Area in 2003. Blue Turtle’s sound reflects their abandon for life in Lake Tahoe, what Seals called one of the premiere recreation spots in the Western United States.

Recommended Stories For You

Shortly after forming, the band formed a nonprofit branch, Deep Blue, dedicated to a variety of Tahoe-inspired causes, including the Keep Tahoe Blue campaign and the Coral Reef Alliance, according the band’s website, .

As Blue Turtle’s reptilian, slightly dreamy name would suggest, the band is committed to a cleaner environment and sustainable living. Until a recent breakdown, vegetable oil fueled Blue Turtle’s tour bus.

"It was an easy transition from the alternative mountain lifestyle to the alternative music lifestyle," Seals said. "We didn’t have mortgages and we still don’t. It’s all about making progress and performing our own material better."

The recession has made touring and recording difficult for regional acts like Blue Turtle, Seals said, who was noticeably relieved when he confirmed that people could come to the July 30 performance without having to pay.

"We want people to be able to afford to see us," he said. "With us, you definitely get a bang for your buck."