Friends of Lithium to Rock Cafe 210 West in Support of Pets Come First
Since forming two years ago, State College-based band Friends of Lithium has played private gigs, at Medlar Field, at People's Choice Festival and even alongside some '90s alt-rock luminaries.
On Saturday, the band will make its downtown debut at Cafe 210 West with a pair of performances (8 to 9:30 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. to midnight) benefiting Pets Come First.
Consisting of lead vocalist Nichole Sheridan, bassist and backup vocalist Martin Sheridan, guitarist Henry Chiarkas and drummer Fred Metzger, the group plays music from the 1990s alt-rock and grunge era, with influences such as Nirvana, Stone Temple Pilots, Alice in Chains and Smashing Pumpkins. They got together in 2016 after the singer-drummer of a band Martin Sheridan and Chiarkas were in moved out of town. Nichole Sheridan, Martin's wife, first came on board as lead singer, then Metzger, a well-known veterinarian in the community, joined as the drummer
That year, Friends of Lithium attended Rock and Roll Fantasy Camp in Hollywood, where they got to play “Man in the Box” with Alice in Chains guitarist Jerry Cantrell and bassist Mike Inez and “Plush” with Stone Temple Pilots bass player Robert DeLeo and lead guitarist Dean DeLeo. They also had the honor of playing three songs at the famed Whisky A Go Go.
"We had a lot of fun, especially playing with our idols," Martin Sheridan said. "The popularity of the camp and the large crowds that we got while playing out there reinforced our opinion that there is a real following for alternative 90s music."
For their first show at a downtown State College venue, they decided to support the fundraising for a new building for Pets Come First, the local volunteer nonprofit animal rescue that operates a no-kill shelter and adoption services in Centre Hall.
"We are all animal lovers and Fred is an amazing advocate for animal charities," Sheridan said.
The $3 cover for "Rockin' for the Rescue" will be donated to Pets Come First, and local businesses have pledged donations as well.
Sheridan said the band hopes to play more regular shows in the area, but with each band member having other jobs and responsibilities, "not too late."
"[We're] a fun party band that enjoys playing the music ... hopefully everyone will have a great time," Sheridan said.