• Wed. Feb 21st, 2024




Y&T remains one of the most criminally underrated bands of all time, not to mention one that got credit for all the wrong reasons. The group is known for their pop-flavored hit “Summertime Girls,” but their actual sound was something much heavier and far more hard rocking. Those who put in the time to explore the band’s catalogue discover some of the most incredible classic hard rock of all time. Even with the death of classic bassist Phil Kennemore, guitarist/vocalist Dave Meniketti and the current incarnation of the group are still going strong.

Y&T remains busy with regular tours, having released their latest studio album in 2010 and a new live CD with the current lineup in 2012. In the current version of the group, Meniketti is joined by guitarist John Nymann, bassist Brad Lang, and drummer Mike Vanderhule. This version of the band is one of the strongest to date, and anyone in attendance at this Vamp’d show would agree.

Kicking off the evening of rock and roll was the John Zito Band! Zito is one of the greatest blues rock guitarists to call Vegas home, and is also known to locals as a part of Count’s 77, the band fronted by Vamp’d owner and Pawn Stars/Counting Cars auto restoration expert Danny “The Count” Koker. Zito always knows how to rock and command a crowd, and his opening set here tonight was one of the best in recent memory. It was the ideal way to jumpstart this evening of music!


Current lineup of Y&T. From left to right - Brad Lang, Dave Meniketti, Mike Vanderhule, John Nymann
Current lineup of Y&T. From left to right – Brad Lang, Dave Meniketti, Mike Vanderhule, John Nymann


Of course, it was Y&T that attracted this large crowd, which was one of the biggest this fan had seen at Vamp’d in quite some time! As soon as the band took the stage and began shelling out the classic gem “Hurricane”, it was clear that the audience was impressed by this display of hard rock on the live Vegas stage. For over two hours the fans were hooked.

One thing that has always impressed me about the Y&T shows is just how diverse of a setlist they are able to give their listeners. This must be the fourth time I have seen the band play Vamp’d, and they pull out deep cuts at every show, in addition to some of the better known tracks. The band even manages to impress in the fact that they care so much about playing lesser known obscure cuts, that they are even willing to sacrifice playing hits to do so; a bold move that no other band out there would dare do. We got Y&T classics like “Rescue Me,” “Dirty Girl,” “Black Tiger,” and “Mean Streak,” but the group pulled out plenty of quality deep cuts, including “Midnight in Tokyo,” “Cold Day in Hell,” “All American Boy” (actually a minor follow-up hit to “Summertime Girls” back in the day) and even some cuts off the band’s latest studio effort, 2010’s Facemelter. It was a great, diverse setlist that ranks amongst the finest I have heard the band perform in concert. A number of fairly popular songs were MIA (even “Summertime Girls” was omitted, as were “Don’t Stop Runnin’” and “Lipstick and Leather,” but this was a small price to pay to get deep Y&T cuts done up live).

You also have to give the band credit for stage chemistry and humor. These guys clearly enjoy making music on the live stage, and enjoy their current situation as well as looking back on the classic years of the group. One of the more humorous moments of the evening was Meniketti claiming Steel Panther had ripped off the “chanting” chorus from “Contagious” and incorporated it into one of their own songs. Little moments like this added to an already great rock show that ran for two continuous hours.

This was an awesome night of rock and roll with no shortcomings whatsoever, and definitely one of the best of the year so far. Y&T seems to hit up Vegas once a year on average, and their performances are always a cut above the rest. Dave Meniketti still sounds just as good as a vocalist and lead guitarist as he ever has, and it shows with every single gig. Fans of the band can take pride in the fact that the group is still at the top of their game. For any fan of classic hard rock/metal, attending a Y&T show is a must.


By Taylor Carlson

Taylor T Carlson Assistant Editor/Senior Staff Writer Taylor T. Carlson was born August 17, 1984, and has called the Vegas Valley home his entire life. A die-hard fan of classic rock and metal music, Taylor has been writing album and concert reviews since he was 16 years old, and continues to do so, having done well over 1,000 reviews. He is also a fan of video gaming and cinema, and has reviewed a number of games and films as well, old and new alike. His thorough and honest (some would say brutally honest) reviewing style has won him the respect of hundreds of music fans and musicians alike, both local and abroad, and the ire of just as many others. Despite being one of the youngest attendees at classic hard rock/metal shows around Vegas, he is also one of the most knowledgeable, having gained the unofficial nickname of “The Eddie Trunk of Las Vegas.” In addition to reviews, Taylor has written and self-published three books on classic hard rock bands, and is a regular participant in rock and roll trivia contests. Taylor also holds a masters degree in special education from the University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV), and has appeared on the hit History Channel television series Pawn Stars. His dream is to be able to one day make a living from writing music books and reviews.

2 thoughts on “Y&T Returns to Count’s Vamp’d and Rocks the Vegas Stage Once Again!”
  1. Always a great band, both live and on record. Original drummer Leonard Haze is currently playing live dates with his band, HazeXperience. We throw some classic Y&T into the set, along with some brand new material. Look for a live album to be available in the near future.

    1. That’s awesome, I definitely appreciate the update! If you guys hit up Vegas I will make every effort possible to attend, and will definitely be picking up that live album in either event. Thanks for the info!

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