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A Summer Night with OAR

O.A.R., American Authors and Rozzi, outdoors at Mystic Lake Casino

This was definitely not my first O.A.R. show. These guys are my all-time favorite! I actually can’t count how many of their shows I’ve been to since I started following them nearly twenty years ago. Wow, where has the time gone? Their lively, upbeat, high-energy shows keep people moving, singing, dancing and coming back for more. 

Marc Roberge, O.A.R. – Photo credit: Chris Schorn, Christine Photography

Any chance I get to see these guys live, I jump at it. Let’s be honest, I’ve both road-tripped as well as booked a flight or two (or many) to get to one of these shows. And to attend an outdoor O.A.R. show in the summertime, so close to home, is just a little bit of “Heaven”

O.A.R. – Photo credit: Chris Schorn, Christine Photography

When I purchased my ticket for the show at Mystic Lakes outdoor amphitheater, for the second year in a row, I wondered how much warmer the night might be this time. Last year they played in September, which definitely offered a cooler evening than this August show. By the time O.A.R. took the stage, we were all glistening. 

Marc Roberge, O.A.R. – Photo credit: Chris Schorn, Christine Photography

American Authors opened for O.A.R., with Rozzi taking the stage before them. Did you know the lead singer of American Authors is from Minnetonka, Minnesota? Well even if you didn’t know that, you would probably recognize their one main well-known song, “Best Day of My Life.” Every time I go to an O.A.R. show it feels like the best day of my life, so that fit well. 

American Authors – Photo credit: Chris Schorn, Christine Photography

When I became a contributor for Music In Minnesota a couple of years ago, I could only have imagined getting to photograph my favorite band, and here I was, doing it! It didn’t feel real. I picked up my press pass and headed into the venue. It wasn’t a sold-out show, but you couldn’t tell. 

O.A.R. at Mystic Lake Amphitheater – Photo credit: Chris Schorn, Christine Photography

For the first time ever, my friends and I had purchased pit tickets. So we were up close for the entire show. 

O.A.R. at Mystic Lake Amphitheater – Photo credit: Chris Schorn, Christine Photography

We joked a bit about being ‘in the pit’ at our age, but it was perfect! Everyone else in this pit was the same age and concert maturity level. And it wasn’t packed like most pits at concerts. This might be the new way for me to roll for O.A.R. shows. 

Benj Gershman, O.A.R. – Photo credit: Chris Schorn, Christine Photography
Richard On, O.A.R. – Photo credit: Chris Schorn, Christine Photography

When the new The Mighty album came out earlier this year, I snagged the download version. This was the first time I didn’t purchase the hard copy of the album. Well, I ended up buying it at the show! I’ve been wanting it in my car’s old school CD player for easy access. Yeah, first world problem, I know, but my vehicle doesn’t have bluetooth, and I want this album ready to play at the push of a button. 

O.A.R. – The Mighty, 2019 – Photo credit: Chris Schorn, Christine Photography

I know it’s not typical for most people to attend a show and know literally every single song the band plays, but I knew every word! Of every song! I mentioned these guys are my favorite, right? And it’s not easy for me to explain why. It’s just the happy vibe their music and shows emit. It’s a feeling. It just makes me want to get up and move, or bounce around in my seat, or something. 

O.A.R. at Mystic Lake Amphitheater – Photo credit: Chris Schorn, Christine Photography

Their energy is contagious and welcomed. Which is why I snagged the setlist off the web. I was too wrapped up in the show to leave to grab another beer, much less keep track of songs. 

Marc Roberge, O.A.R. – Photo credit: Chris Schorn, Christine Photography

“Oh My”, that trumpet player! The fan support of freelance musician, Jon Lampley, who started touring with the band in 2011, has been immense, and for good reason. 

Jerry DePizzo & Jon Lampley, O.A.R. – Photo credit: Chris Schorn, Christine Photography

O.A.R. played a good mix of old and new, being sure to not miss “Crazy Game of Poker” which is not only played at every single show, but was the very first O.A.R. song I learned. It’s the song that got me hooked for life.

I never remember to bring a deck of cards to throw for Crazy Game of Poker!

It was fun to see people passing on the O.A.R. love and bringing their kids to the show. This band is definitely worth sharing with the next generation.

Front row at O.A.R., Mystic Lake Amphitheater – Photo credit: Chris Schorn, Christine Photography

Everyone on that stage looked like they were having the time of their lives. I fell right into the hypnotic state that sorta makes it all a big blur. I love it so much. 

O.A.R. at Mystic Lake Amphitheater – Photo credit: Chris Schorn, Christine Photography

Every member of the band is so passionate, which makes attending their shows worth every minute.

O.A.R. – Photo credit: Chris Schorn, Christine Photography

Mystic Lake Casino and Hotel offers a fantastic option for the outdoor concert scene in Minnesota. Hey, we only get a few months to enjoy outdoor shows, so we need to maximize. 

O.A.R. at Mystic Lake Amphitheater – Photo credit: Chris Schorn, Christine Photography

Prior Lake also has some great pre-show options like Boathouse Brothers Brewing Co. Or, if you want lakeside, try Charlie’s on Prior

Beer Flight at Boathouse Brother’s Brewing Co – Photo credit: Chris Schorn, Christine Photography

I was hoping for the chance to get to try The Mighty Lager it sounds like has been making an appearance at some shows this summer. But due to some casino policy, I was told, it wasn’t available. I mean, an O.A.R. beer?! Sign me up!

The Mighty Lager – Great Lakes Brewing Co

O.A.R. is infamous for putting on an amazing show! Speaking of a great summer of music in Minnesota, what’s next??  

O.A.R. at Mystic Lake Amphitheater – Photo credit: Chris Schorn, Christine Photography

SETLIST
1Dareh Meyod
2City on Down
3The Architect
4Program Director
5The Stranger
6Be Easy
7Shattered (Turn the Car Around)
8Knocking at Your Door
9Conquering Fools
10Are You for Real?
11Hey Girl
12California
13Anyway
14Peace
15Night Shift
16Stir It Up
17Love and Memories
18All Because of You
19Heaven
20Delicate Few
21Miss You All the Time
22This Town
23I Go Through
24That Was a Crazy Game of Poker
25Missing Pieces

Written by Chris Schorn

Twin Cities Photographer - Always smilin' and enjoyin' the journey! #ilovemusic

https://christinephotography.co/

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