You probably didn’t win a Golden Ticket to see Nite Wave perform live this Saturday, but you can still watch the show from the comfort of your own home.
Bothell’s own new wave cover band will perform a livestream “Best ’80s Party Ever!” show at the Nectar Lounge in Seattle Feb. 27 via Facebook. Six lucky fans won a Golden Ticket auction on eBay to see the band live.
“It’s been an interesting mental exercise as a band on how to adapt to the current world we live in and still maintain some interactiveness with our fans,” Nite Wave frontman Michael Henrichsen said. “About 99% of what we do is perform live. It’s still our bread and butter.”
Nite Wave performs ’80s favorites like Billy Idol’s “Dancing With Myself,” Duran Duran’s “Hungry Like the Wolf” and Prince’s “Purple Rain.”
Henrichsen (lead vocals and guitar) is joined by Evan Galt (lead bass and keyboard), Dave Dodge (lead guitar), Jim Simbe (lead keys and bass) and Jeff Mills (drums).
Nite Wave has opened for Billy Idol and shared the stage with Jane Wiedlin of The Go-Go’s, the ‘80s icon Tiffany and Clive Farrington of When in Rome.
In 2011, Henrichsen placed a Craigslist ad for musicians to join an ‘80s cover band. He needed a band to help him get Billy Idol to play at Seattle’s Showbox SoDo.
An Idol fan, Henrichsen made the website www.playmybirthdaybillyidol.com in 2010. Two years later, Idol played for his 26th birthday. The band — through Billy Idol Aid events — raised more than $17,000 for the Northwest Harvest Food Bank and the American Red Cross.
Before COVID-19 hit, Nite Wave was playing more than 60 shows a year. Now they perform about once a month at either Seattle’s Nectar Lounge, Kirkland Performance Center or the Aurora Borealis in Shoreline. A TV screen shows the band Facebook comments from fans watching them live.
“Our 2020 calendar, we had booked out nine to 12 months in advance,” Henrichsen said, adding that their last live show was March 7 at The Swiss Restaurant & Pub in Tacoma. “We had dates all the way out to 2021 back when COVID-19 started to hit.”
The band has also livestreamed performances from their rehearsal studio — it’s Gault’s rec room in his Everett home — with Henrichsen’s cellphone. They take lots of fan requests for these DIY shows.
“Our first show was reversed because we didn’t know how to set up the camera,” Gault said, with a laugh. “Left was right and right was left, video-wise. We had a sign up for people to donate and it was a mirror image. We got it fixed for the next show, but the first time we didn’t know how to do it.”
Nite Wave covers a variety of ‘80s bands, including Duran Duran, The Cure, INXS, The Cars, Prince, Depeche Mode, Tears for Fears and Billy Idol. The band knows about 150 popular songs from the decade. (They play about 25 songs per show.)
More recently, the band developed tribute shows for Duran Duran (Tiger Tiger), Billy Idol (Whiplash Smile) and Prince’s “Purple Rain” album.
With their extra rehearsal time, the band has learned a number of new songs, such as Living Colour’s “Cult of Personality,” Thompson Twins’ “Hold Me Now,” Van Halen’s “You Really Got Me,” Sade’s “Paradise” and “True Faith” by New Order. They’re also working on a show where they play A Flock of Seagulls’ debut album.
Both Henrichsen, who does marketing for University of Washington Medicine, and Gault, a staff analyst for Boeing, miss performing in front of a live audience. They’re excited to have six Golden Ticket winners at the Nectar Lounge this time.
“This will be the first time we have more than two people that we’re playing for in the room,” Gault said, adding that they’ve had to limit it to two Golden Ticket winners at previous shows. “That adds a lot of energy for us when we here people cheer.”
“Dancing on stage, playing our instruments and the audience reacting — that’s certainly what we look forward to after our 9-to-5s,” Hendrichsen said. “To not have that outlet has been challenging.”
Pay what you will for tickets via Eventbrite. Or donate to the band’s virtual tip jar at www.paypal.me/nectarlounge or via Venmo @nectar-lounge.
“The donations we’ve been so lucky to receive, those are going to go a long way in helping in keeping their doors open but also all the employees are out of work: the bartenders, the security guards, the sound engineers,” Henrichsen said. “We tend to forget that a lot of these people who work these shows are unemployed right now.”
Sara Bruestle: 425-339-3046; sbruestle@
If you go
Bothell’s Nite Wave will perform a livestream “Best ’80s Party Ever!” show presented by the Nectar Lounge Virtual Concert Series at 8 p.m. on Feb. 27 via Facebook. Purchase pay-what-you-will tickets via Eventbrite. Or donate to the band’s virtual tip jar at www.paypal.me/nectarlounge or via Venmo @nectar-lounge. Watch the show at www.facebook.com/nitewaveparty.