Puddles brings his clownish pity party to Thunder Valley

Big Mike Geier (6-foot-8) is Puddles, the melancholy clown with the sad face and soaring vocals.
Big Mike Geier (6-foot-8) is Puddles, the melancholy clown with the sad face and soaring vocals. Puddles Pity Party

When you lose, it often helps to throw yourself a pity party. That’s what Mike Geier did after he lost the “America’s Got Talent” 12th edition title this year. He made it to the semifinals as his alternate persona, Puddles, a clown with a sad face and soaring vocals.

Big Mike Geier (6-foot-8) hails from Atlanta, where he is the leader of a band appropriately called Kingsized, but he gained most of his pre-AGT fame from doing covers of songs, like a famous one for Postmodern Jukebox of Lordes’ “Royals.” That one ironically led to his AGT elimination after his performance caused Simon Cowell to give him a dreaded “X,” leading to his ouster the following night.

Geier has wisely dubbed his current tour “Puddles Pity Party: the Sad Clown with the Golden Voice.” His downcast visage contrasts nicely with his covers, like those of ABBA’s “Chiquitita,” Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah,” Conway Twitty’s “It’s Only Make Believe,” or a mash-up of Queen’s “Under Pressure” and “Let It Go.”

Nobody can doubt his vocal versatility; check out his many YouTube songs. The party comes to Thunder Valley Saturday (7:30 p.m.; $29.95-$39.95;thundervalleyresort.com).

Those who love to taste craft beers were left out last weekend when Jackson Rancheria had to cancel its Harvest Brew-Fest, but this weekend provides another opportunity to sip away as Reno’s Grand Sierra hosts its Beer and Chili Festival Saturday and Sunday (noon to 6 p.m.).

Brewers range from the local (Brewer’s Cabinet, Battle Born Beer Company) to the regional (Belching Beaver, Tonopah Brewing) to national (Samuel Adams, Alaskan Brewing). Monster Energy’s BMX team will be on hand to entertain. (Free admission; tasting packages start at $20; benefits go to Make-A-Wish Foundation; grandsierraresort/chilibeerfest.com)

Also this week:

The great Mexican Norteno band Los Huricanes del Norte play “Amarte Es Hermoso” and “Nomas port u Culpa” and other hits at Cache Creek Saturday. (8 p.m.; $49 standing, $60 reserved with access to dance floor; cachecreek.com)

Classic rockers (48 years and counting) Grand Funk Railroad brings “We’re An American Band” and “Locomotion” to the MontBleu Saturday. (8 p.m.; $45; Ticketmaster)

Travis Tritt goes more subtle in a solo acoustic outing Saturday at the Nugget Casino Resort (previously John Ascuaga’s Nugget) in Sparks. (8 p.m.; $40-$65;nuggetcasino.com)

And Felipe Esparza, who has been all over HBO all month, brings his comedy to Reno’s Grand Sierra Saturday. (7 p.m.; $20.50-$25.50; silverlegacy.com)