About Us


WHISKEY TRAIN was formed back in 2012 by Johnny and Rich as a vehicle to pay homage to their favorite guitar heroes.  Since that time, Johnny led the band through many classic guitar-based songs by such timeless artists as Jimi Hendrix, Robin Trower, and Stevie Ray Vaughn.  As the years went on, the band continued to widen their net, covering such other guitar rock artists as ZZ Top, Kenny Wayne Shepard, UFO, Golden Earring, CCR, and many others.  After putting the band on hiatus for a few years, Johnny met Florida transplant Scotty while playing in another popular area band.  With Scotty's dynamic bass playing style, Johnny immediately felt the chemistry the two shared on stage and discussed bringing the WHISKEY TRAIN experience back to the local music scene.  Reconnecting with Rich, Johnny and Scotty decided to bring back the 3-piece, guitar-based rock and roll they all love and share it with everyone.  Over the years, the guys have played such high profile local shows as the Burning Girl Festival, the Relay for Life Benefit, Harley-Davidson Street Vibrations, the Reno-Tahoe Festival, California's annual Death Ride, as well as many of the Carson Valley area's smaller indoor venues.  The band's number one criteria has always been that the songs stay pure and uncluttered by trickery such as MIDI backing tracks that are used by so many of today's live acts.  WHISKEY TRAIN believes that true live rock and roll should be played 100% raw and live to maintain its purity; for that reason, what you hear at a WHISKEY TRAIN appearance is only pure live rock and roll.  Whiskey Train is also a fully self-contained band with full lights and PA, capable of handling any small-to-midsize indoor or outdoor event.  With all professional equipment and a small stage footprint, the band are just as comfortable on a small club stage (or floor) as they are on the big stage.

The Band

Johnny Smoke

Johnny, born and raised in the Bay area, was always into the electric blues guitar sound.  Deciding that he too wanted to become a six-string blues master, John taught himself how to play by listening to his idols and honing his craft.  Playing the local blues circuit for many years, John eventually relocated to the Lake Tahoe area.  Once there, he continued to make a name for himself in the local scene playing in such well-known area bands as Skychurch and Above & Beyond; John eventually went on to form his own band Whiskey Train and so the legend began.  With a distinct sound that reflects his love of guitarists such as Robin Trower and Jimi Hendrix, John uses only Fender Stratocaster guitars and Marshall amplification to get there.

Scotty Whiskey

Since his first stage performance at the age of 6, Scotty has always felt right at home on a stage.  It was only natural that this would lead him to pick up a guitar and start performing at a young age.  After playing his first paid band gig at 14 and first weekly club gigs at 16, he has never looked back.  After taking some time away from the music business to serve his country in the US military, Scotty returned to the Florida music scene to pick up where he left off.  During the years that followed, he has had the privilege of sharing a stage with such well-known bands as .38 Special, Molly Hatchet, Blackfoot, Great White, and Atlanta Rhythm Section, to name just a few.  Much like the pioneers of old though, Scotty felt the pull of the West; searching for that elusive musical gold, he packed up all of his belongings and headed for the beautiful mining town of Reno, Nevada.  Now as the newest member of Whiskey Train, he's ready to tap into that musical gold mine.

Rich Sorenson

Hailing from the Bay area of California, Rich grew up watching many of the great late 60s acts at famous venues like the Winterland and the Fillmore West.  Seeing great blues artists such as Paul Butterfield, Taj Mahal, and Peter Green's Fleetwood Mac, Rich was bitten by the performance bug at an early age.  Starting off playing the blues harmonica professionally at 15, Rich later switched over to drums.  Eventually he formed his own band, Factoryedge, that remained together for 10 years.  Rich even got to hang out at the infamous Chateau Liberté in the Santa Cruz mountains back in the early days, with such bands as The Doobie Brothers (not to mention many members of the Hell's Angels motorcycle club as well). Eventually relocating to the Carson City area, Rich connected with Johnny back in 2012 and Whiskey Train was born.

Upcoming Appearances

Saturday, June 23rd, 7pm-10pm

Washoe Camp Saloon

3155 Eastlake Boulevard

New Washoe City, NV

Friday, August 3rd, 8pm-12am

Nevada Ugly

1433 US Highway 395N, Ste A

Gardnerville, NV

Friday & Saturday, Sept 14th-15th, 9pm-1am | Friday & Saturday, Nov 23rd-24th, 9pm-1am

The Loft

@ The Carson Nugget

507 N. Carson St.

Carson City, NV

(775) 882-1626

Live Audio Sampler

A sampler of several live audio clips....just click on play and enjoy.

Artist List

Robin Trower

Guns and Roses


Bad Company

Jimi Hendrix


Wilson Pickett


Deep Purple

James Gang


Lynyrd Skynyrd

J.J. Cale

Seven Mary Three


Billy Squire



Steve Miller Band

Ted Nugent

Stevie Ray Vaughn


Golden Earring

Pearl Jam


The Beatles

Dire Straits

Bob Seger

Molly Hatchet


Wild Cherry

Neil Young


Kenny Wayne Shepard


Collective Soul


Eric Clapton

and more being added all the time

Live Videos


(originally recorded 

by Robin Trower).


(originally recorded by Z.Z. Top)


(originally recorded

  by Jimi Hendrix)

Born on the Bayou

(originally recorded by CCR)


Contact Us

For Booking Information

Let's Connect

Do you want to book a show? Reach out and let's make some music happen.