The band Sleigher is not your average cover band. Sleigher is strictly Christmas themed and comes together every holiday season to perform parodies of yuletide hits. This year’s Sleigher formation is comprised of five new faces and two original performers. 605 chatted with original member Jesse Yost to see what they have up their (Christmas sweater) sleeves this go-round.

I WOULD DESCRIBE SLEIGHER AS… a Christmas parody lounge band, or simply a band of filthy mouths and generous hearts. 

PEOPLE MIGHT KNOW US FROM… bands such as Sugardaddy, Glory Holes, The Velcro Ultrasound, Spooncat, Driven, Angelic, and many more. 

SLEIGHER BEGAN WHEN… Chad McKinney and myself talked after a show by my then-Christmas project called Tiny Tim and the Crutch Kickers. Both of us loved swearing, music, and Christmas. Stupidity ensued.

SLEIGHER WAS STARTED IN… 2011 in Sioux Falls. It started in Kerry and Adrienne Roberts’ basement. With several drinks and Chad McKinney already having an idea for the band name, Sleigher was the perfect recipe for fun. 

OUR FAVORITE SONGS TO PERFORM ARE… Wake Me Up Before You Ho Ho, Dancing With My Elf, and Yule Shoot Yer Eye Out. 


SHOW ONE: December 7 // Vermillion Theater, Vermillion

SHOW TWO: December 14 // Icon Lounge, Sioux Falls

ONE MISCONCEPTION ABOUT SLEIGHER IS… we’re great for kid’s parties. We’re not, but we do only play shows to raise money for charity. No big paydays for the band.

OUR MUSICAL INFLUENCES ARE… Burl Ives, Richard Cheese, Billy Idol, “Weird Al” Yankovic, Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra, Tenacious D, and Fugazi. 

OUR MOST INTERESTING PERFORMANCE WAS… on December 12, 2015. The SantaCon pub crawl was the same day. Icon Lounge was full, and it was a wonderfully messy and joyful night. It looks like this year may be similar! 

CHRISTMAS IS… magic. Pure magic. 

I RETURN TO SLEIGHER EACH YEAR BECAUSE… well, it’s more like every 2.6 years since we’ve only played three shows in eight years. However, Sleigher 2019 has two shows booked, and that’s a first. We love to celebrate the season and raise money for good causes! .

SOME OF OUR DAY JOBS INCLUDE… teaching, music instrument repair, information technology, and a tattoo artist. You can guess who has what job. 

ONE THING YOU CAN EXPECT TO SEE AT OUR SHOWS IS… mucho holiday gay apparel. 

OUR PREPARATION PROCESS LOOKS LIKE… drinks and repeating the Sleigher motto: “Dumb it down and lounge it up.” 

MY FAVORITE HOLIDAY TRADITION IS… a leg lamp in the front window.

THE UPCOMING PERFORMANCE I’M MOST EXCITED FOR IS… Vermillion on December 7, which is our first road gig. From what we understand, the road don’t take no guff.

WHEN I WALK AROUND DOWNTOWN, SOME OF MY FAVORITE PLACES TO STOP BY ARE… Vishnu Bunny Tattoo and Piercing, Zandbroz Variety, The Game Chest, and Great Outdoor Store. 

MY FAVORITE HOLIDAY FOOD IS… holiday [egg]nog. That’s food, right? 

I LOVE TO GRAB A BITE OR DRINK AT… Tommy Jack’s [Pub], Parker’s [Bistro], JL Beers, Taphouse 41, Jono’s Bar and Grill, TC’s Referee [Sports Bar & Grill], or Remedy Brewing [Company]. 

MY FAVORITE CHRISTMAS MOVIES ARE… Gremlins, [National Lampoon’s] Christmas Vacation, Love Actually, A Christmas Story, It’s a Wonderful Life, and White Christmas.

WE LOVE PERFORMING IN SIOUX FALLS BECAUSE… we thoroughly enjoy that our town is becoming much more diverse, and we dig the different crowds we get at Sleigher shows. We also love to see our musician friends who come out to see us. 

ONE THING I LOVE ABOUT SOUTH DAKOTA IS… it’s not North Dakota. Also, we love both our seasons: road work and Christmas. 


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