Wicked Garden started out in 2010 specializing in the five most influential grunge bands of all time, Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Alice In Chains, Soundgarden, and Stone Temple Pilots. After amassing over three hours of set list hits from these five chart topping bands, they have performed these songs all over Minnesota and surrounding states. In late 2014 and early 2015, two founding members moved on from Wicked Garden to pursue more family time and other interests. John Gensmer, Ryan Gaskill, and Jamie Norman joined up with Wally and Jeff Borgan to form a new lineup with more versatility.
After listening to the requests at several shows prior, the newly revamped band decided to expand the set list to include several other artists from the 90′s Grunge Era, as well as Grunge influenced artists that are chart topping today, such as Tool, Foo Fighters, Queens of The Stone Age, etc.
The goal of today’s Wicked Garden is to appeal to today’s generation of concert goers, as well as fans of the 90′s era, which is certain to grow the fanbase to a level that was unreachable by sticking to the limitations of the original five band plan. The band wants fans to be able to expect new songs when they see Wicked Garden return to their favorite venue. The goal is to have an extensive catalog to keep the shows fresh, and to keep fans engaged and excited for what may come next time around. For the venues that the band performs back to back nights, the band will have a different set for each night to keep fans coming back for more the second night.
Ryan Gaskill: Lead Vocals
Former Blood Root Mother front man has has 10+ years on the road music experience as a vocalist/multi-instrumentalist. A versatile musician, he has performed with everything from regional cover bands, to local original acts. During this time he put out 4 studio releases which included writing collaborations with multi-platinum recording artists, and even a rock and roll hall of famer. After over 1000 career shows and a lust for grunge music, he’s ready to take the stage with Wicked Garden to attempt to emulate his biggest influences. Ryan’s vocal coaching and accuracy has also brought the rest of Wicked Garden’s backing vocal participants’ abilities to a whole new level.
Nina DeNio: Lead Vocals
The latest addition to Wicked Garden, “Queen” Nina brings a sparkling personality, soaring pipes, and a stacked resumé to fold. In addition to her acrobatic vocals, she’s a talented dancer and choreographer. She’s performed with Kat Perkins and Brat Pack Radio and more, singing and dancing her way through the midwest. Nina is in charge of some of the biggest hits from female artists from the 90s, including Fiona, Alanis, Bjork, and more. No stranger to 90s grunge acts, she brings fierce Layne Staley energy from her time in Alison Chains. She has a unique ability to pull people out of their chairs and fill the dance floor. Wicked Garden’s catalog and stylistic horizon’s expand with her addition.
Jamie Norman: Guitar/Vocals
Jamie has been performing in original and cover bands for over 20 years. Early on, John Gensmer and Jamie formed the drivetrain of an original Minneapolis outfit, Acadian, playing local venues and recording with top local producers. From there, Jamie contributed to other Minneapolis projects before moving on to cover bands on the East Coast and back to Minnesota. Most recently, Jamie has been playing bass in a genre-busting cover trio before tending to guitar duties in Wicked Garden. Jamie provides something to the band that was missing before; a third vocalist to enhance all the harmonies that are needed when covering these great bands, and his attention to detail is second to none.
Salvador Rosas: Drums
Eli Pete: Bass Guitar
Eli has been playing bass and owning stages across the country for longer than your grandparents have been subscribed to Reader’s Digest. He’s laid down low frequencies for Arch Allies, Dirty Word, Coyote Wild in recent times. He’s been on USO tours in the far reaches of the globe. As a member of Metal Blade artist and black metal outfit Epicurean (with former WG drummer John Gensmer) and toured North America with legendary metal bands. Eli brings unstoppable energy and funk to every Wicked Garden Concert Event.
Benjamin Horn: Lead Guitar/Vocals/Glockenspiel
Benjamin is a multi-instrumentalist, producer, composer, and connoisseur of Tiki cocktails. After over a decade on the music and restaurant scene in NYC, he returns to his roots in Minnesota to play alongside best friend Jamie, who—along with former drummer, John Gensmer—were 3/4ths of original project Acadian. Expanding production orchestration and an arsenal of instruments are on full display each Wicked Garden concert event. Benjamin’s wizardry shines a new light on the current catalog and allows the band to chart new territory.