When Off the Reservation lead singer Tiger stretched his voice to span four octaves, as 1980s arena rock icon Steve Perry could, he understood his musical calling.
Fans of the band Journey and lovers of the rock anthems the band gave to rock history such as "Don't Stop Believin'," "Anyway You Want It" and "Open Arms" won't want to miss Off the Reservation's next gig.
The band will bring its classic rock sound to the LakeHouse Pub Sunday.
In the late '70s, the progressive rock sound of the band Journey was arriving on the musical scene. A shift in its vocal leadership led the band to hire Perry. His vocal ability advanced the band's songwriting to include not only now-recognizable rock anthems, but ballads that drew male and female fans in equal numbers, helping secure the band's place in rock history.
"I've been told that I'm the Steve Perry of central New York," said Tiger, one of Off the Reservation's three lead singers. "I've got a gift to sing like that."
Tiger and his band-mates — keyboardist Mike Place, drummer Eric Wilson, and guitarists Billy Place and Dave Wolever — share much of the vocal load when they get together as Off the Reservation, and boast a playlist that anyone coming of age in the 1980s will recognize. The band covers such stalwarts of the era as Van Halen, REO Speedwagon, Queen, AC/DC, The Police, Ozzy Osbourne, The Scorpions and, of course, Journey.
"Steve Perry's my hero, my No. 1 idol," Tiger said.
Tiger handles the acoustic guitar licks for the band, and says the band's two other guitarists will bring their Fender Stratocasters and Gibson SG's to gigs so they can closely replicate the sounds created by their classic rock idols.
"I never took lessons as far as guitar and singing goes," said Tiger, who has a successful solo career, as do many of the band's members.
The guys in the band have known each other for close to 25 years, having grown up near each other in Fulton and Oswego and knowing each other here and there from the central New York music scene.
"We've been together as a group for about six years," Tiger said, though members of the band have played together in various iterations throughout the years. "We just decided to finally do it."
The band doles out the three-part harmony parts and shares the lead singing duties, and they also take suggestions from each other about songs they want to work on to bolster their playlist. Right now the band's working on "Africa" by Toto and some Thin Lizzy tunes.
The band plays out, these days, twice a month — and one of those gigs is their appearance at the LakeHouse Pub. They look forward to playing the lakeside venue, Tiger said, because the bar's patrons appreciate the band's homage to rock's classic tunes.
"We do 11 Journey songs, but we have to split them up (throughout the night)," Tiger said. "There's not an unhappy person that leaves when they come to see us, and that says a lot about everybody in the band."