MN Music On-A-Stick 2014 announces lineup

Categories: State Fair
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Photo by Anna Gulbrandsen
The Minnesota State Fair and 89.3 the Current's tradition of putting local music on the Grandstand stage continues with the 2014 running of MN Music On-a-Stick on August 30.

This year brings together several popular vets of past Rock the Garden shows and birthday parties, and has the deepest lineup yet. Fresh off hosting duties at Soundset, Brother Ali leads the way.

See also:
Review: MN Music On-A-Stick 2013

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Smash Mouth with Sugar Ray and the Gin Blossoms at the Grandstand, 8/23/13

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Erik Hess
Smash Mouth
Smash Mouth with Sugar Ray and the Gin Blossoms State Fair Grandstand Friday, August 23, 2013

Friday night State Fair goers took advantage of the perfect summer evening and stepped into a time machine for the Under the Sun tour with Smash Mouth, Sugar Ray, and Gin Blossoms at the State Fair Grandstand, which as the tagline reads, definitely celebrated the golden age of '90s pop-rock. The last stop on this American tour, the night featured many songs about summertime, nostalgia, and odes to each band's wonder years.

See also:
Photos: Smash Mouth at the State Fair, 8/23/13


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MN State Fair: A deep-fried look at 2013's Grandstand music

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Artwork by Chris Strouth

Makes No Sense At All captures the visions, ramblings, and memories of Chris Strouth, a Twin Cities-bred master of music, film, and everything else.

The world is divided into three camps at the moment. There are those overwhelmed that the Replacements are playing their first show since the Bush era, folks who can't stop talking about the MN State Fair, and the third group are the people who don't live in Minnesota. Regarding the 'Mats, my money is on a Three Stooges-style pie fight followed by the shocking revelation that Paul Westerberg is in fact the love child of Alex Chilton and Judy Garland. Now that we've settled that, let's talk about the Great Minnesota Get-Together, a.k.a. the great Minnesota Cultural Equalizer.

The State Fair is the one place the whole state comes together with the common goal of eating fried food on a stick. Whether you're a governor, a mayor, a local rock 'n' roll icon, a farmer, or an aspiring juggalo, you can take some small comfort in that you're all going to go home with a stomach on the verge of being queasy. It's like a class reunion, but with life -- and a bit like Costco that way. You can run into your high school drama teacher, the bully from eighth grade, and any number of local drummers. Somehow you're never asking yourself why Garrison Keillor is buying a 50-pound tub of Gorgonzola cheese, instead you just wonder "Where did he get that three-foot-deep fried cream puff on a stick?"

Of course another big draw is the scattered State Fair music offerings, with a lot of folks getting excited about the big Grandstand shows. Most notably, Depeche Mode with Bat for Lashes. At $60 on top of the fair's $12 admission, it's one of the priciest shows of the season. Is it just me, or is this just kind of weird?

See Also:
MN State Fair 2013 Grandstand lineup & schedule
MN State Fair 2013 free stages: Sheila E., Chastity Brown, and more


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MN State Fair 2013 Grandstand lineup & schedule

Categories: State Fair
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Photo by Anna Gulbrandsen
The late-summer magnet for music fans that is the Minnesota State Fair Grandstand has just widened its offerings. New concerts packed into the late-summer blast of live, outdoor spirit have a distinctly nostalgic vibe with the additions of Train, Michael Franti & Spearhead, Smash Mouth, Sammy Hagar, and several others. Also, the local tradition of MN Music On-A-Stick just got a few more acts thrown into the fryer in the form of the Suburbs and P.O.S.

With Depeche Mode, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, and Tim McGraw on the Grandstand, as well as Sheila E. and plenty more on the free stages already announced, this thing is getting mighty busy. Check out the dates below.

See Also:
Depeche Mode unveil 2013 U.S. tour dates -- St. Paul in August
MN State Fair announces more 2013 grandstand: Macklemore, Tim McGraw, and more
MN State Fair 2013 free stages: Sheila E., Chastity Brown, and more
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MN State Fair 2013 free stages: Sheila E., Chastity Brown, and more

Categories: State Fair
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Sheila E.
Most Minnesotans hunger for music as much as they crave cheese curds -- if not more. So it makes sense that between the Minnesota State Fair's Grandstand entertainment and a load of free stages there's a veritable binge on live entertainment, and no heartburn.

The highest-profile shows of the Great Minnesota get-together are jammed into dual evenings at the Bandshell Tonight! stage. Singer/drummer Sheila E., who spent a good portion of the '80s collaborating with Prince and since has amassed significant pop, country, and jazz accomplishments, highlights the Bandshell offerings, which also include the now-grown Hansen, and Robert Randolph & the Family Band. The Heritage at Sundown stage should tickle a Gimme Noise reader or three as well with Chastity Brown, Lucy Michelle & the Velvet Lapelles, and several others. Plus, Grammy winners the Okee Dokee Brothers are at the Family Fair. Check out more highlights of the free stages below.

See Also:
Depeche Mode unveil 2013 U.S. tour dates -- St. Paul in August
MN State Fair announces more 2013 grandstand: Macklemore, Tim McGraw, and more

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MN State Fair announces more 2013 grandstand: Macklemore, Tim McGraw, and more

Categories: State Fair
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Photo by Erik Hess
It's unlikely that Macklemore & Ryan Lewis will get characterized as "raunchy" by anyone in the local press corps, but the rap group has had an undeniably meteoric rise in the past 12 months. Fans who caught them at Soundset 2012 got to hear them talk about some new song they were trying out called "Thrift Shop," which has elevated them to hip-hop prominence. Look at them now.

And Minnesota State Fair-goers will be able to cheer, gawk, and point when Macklemore hits the grandstand this summer. The act joins the already announced Depeche Mode as another performer that might have more than a few music fans suiting up for their first fairgrounds visit in a while.

See Also:
Macklemore on thrift shopping post-"Thrift Shop"
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis at First Avenue, 11/30/12
Depeche Mode unveil 2013 U.S. tour dates -- St. Paul in August

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MN Music on a Stick lineup: Semisonic, Jayhawks, Dessa, & Jeremy Messersmith

Categories: State Fair
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Related:
Dawes leads Minnesota State Fair free shows lineup
Kiss, Motley Crue lead Minnesota State Fair 2012 offerings

Just when you thought they'd put everything on a stick already, local star power combines for this year's MN Music On-A-Stick show at the Minnesota State Fair.

As you can see at right, the lineup is a formidable collection of area talents, including the tuneful alt-rock stylings of Semisonic, the twangy goodness of the Jayhawks, Dessa's poetic hip-hop, and Jeremy Messersmith's sly wordplay and song structures. Dip them all in the fryer, and this is something that'll certainly leave less of an ache in your stomach than a visit to the doughnut hamburger stand.

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Dawes leads Minnesota State Fair free shows lineup

Categories: State Fair
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Photo by Stacy Schwartz
Related:
Kiss, Motley Crue lead Minnesota State Fair 2012 offerings
Dawes at First Avenue, 11/4/11

Although the Minnesota State Fair has done a fairly good job of packing in some variety for its Grandstand shows, the free entertainment this year should pull a hefty crowd this late August/early September.

Dawes, the best local band not from Minnesota, is indeed lined up for not one, but two performances. Actually, in this case, the smooth folk-rockers love playing here so much that they probably requested these performances themselves. This is only the tip of the deep-fried Oreo of a lineup for this year's festivities, however. Check out the lineup and schedules below.

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Kiss, Motley Crue lead Minnesota State Fair 2012 offerings

Categories: State Fair
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Photo by Erik Hess
Kiss' Paul Stanley at the 2010 State Fair.
The 2012 running of the great Minnesota get-together is starting to pile up a load of concert offerings for this August. Tops among the Grandstand Concert Series shows is the Minneapolis St. Paul stop on the Kiss-Mötley Crüe joint tour, which will be the first series of dates these two monsters of rock have shared since, oh, 1982. Kiss, the band that hosted one of the most miraculous cruises ever to hit the high seas, performed at the Minnesota State Fair in 2010.

Updated: Wiz Khalifa and Journey shows have been added to the list. The salient details are included below.

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Def Leppard's Phil Collen on Heart, hair metal posers & vegetarianism

Categories: Q&A, State Fair
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Phil in the video for "Rocket"
As if the State Fair wasn't already crawling with interesting creatures from all corners of the state, today's sure to provide even better people watching as Def Leppard take the stage at the Grandstand (with rock-n-roll sisters, Heart). Time to bring out your tightest pants, Aquanet hairspray and ratty rock tees!

We caught up with longtime lead guitarist Phil Collen recently and talked to him about the hair metal era, who rocked, who were posers, and how he came out of it a happy, healthy Californian.

Here's our extended interview (a shortened version ran in print this week).

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