The Plus hosted local and regional bands on its stage last Friday night

Students and community members filled the downtown restaurant to watch performances by David Janakey, Sleeping Jesus and Kinda Kinky

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Photo by Kar Wei Cheng

David Janakey, Sleeping Jesus and Kinda Kinky performed on The Plus’ stage last Friday night. Janakey is pictured here.

Three bands performed at The Plus for a show dedicated to a retro band, The Kinks.

The show, hosted by WHYS Radio last Friday, drew in a crowd of both students and locals. The musical night welcomed multiple genres to the downtown restaurant, which the crowd responded to with applause and dancing.

David Janakey, an Eau Claire local, started the show off with original songs. He played acoustic guitar with a stick of incense stuck in its strings.

The second group to perform was Sleeping Jesus, a band from Winona, Minnesota. The group of five filled the stage as they also sang original songs.

Kinda Kinky, a Kinks cover band, headlined the show with their rendition of the rock band from the ’60s. Community members and students responded to their covers by singing along to some of the songs.

The Minneapolis-based band, made up by members Dave Randall, Keith Patterson, Lynn Von Sien and Steve Kent, took the stage as the last performers of the night. The group started seven years ago through the efforts of bass player, Von Sien, when the idea came to her while on a trip in England.

“I went to England and I went to see ‘The Kast Off Kinks’ and they were really fun,” Von Sien said. “I came back and I said, ‘We could do that.’”

In Minneapolis and St. Paul, tribute bands are “a thing,” Von Sien said. She said people who are in original bands often have side projects usually dedicated to tributes of multiple different artists like The Beatles, Prince, Tom Petty and Led Zeppelin.

Von Sien said they were interested in covering The Kinks due to the vast material they have. They now are able to play 150 songs by The Kinks at gigs local to Minneapolis and St. Paul.

Patterson, who plays the guitar and covers vocals, said he remembered Von Sien roping them into this band after one gig they did and her efforts to make it a group.

“Lynn had the drive, there was no way the three of us guys (in the band) could have gotten it together,” Patterson said.

With Kinda Kinky’s debut in Eau Claire, locals and students packed the house for their performance. Some of the crowd members sat at tables ordering food while others got up and danced in front of the stage.

Samantha Harvey, a junior public relations student, said Patterson was her old guitar teacher, and she came to the show to show support.

“I know them and played guitar with him (Patterson) for a lot of years,” Harvey said. “I’m just here to support him.”

Harvey said she enjoyed her time spent at The Plus listening to the music by the bands that performed.

“It was fun to hang out here and listen to music,” Harvey said.

As the night went on, more people filled the room to listen to the performances of the bands playing. By the time Kinda Kinky took the stage there was a group of people crowding the front of the stage waiting to dance to throwback ’60s rock.

The show started with more of an indie folk sound presented by Janakey, which then progressed to indie rock by Sleeping Jesus and ended with full-on rock by Kinda Kinky.

Next weekend at The Plus, award-winning comedian Tim Harmston will be recording his comedy show at 7 p.m. on Saturday. He has performed on CBS’ Late Show with David Letterman as well as other TV comedy shows. Tickets will be sold for $10.