O.A.R.

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O.A.R. (Of a Revolution)
OARlive.JPG
O.A.R. during 2009 summer concert tour at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center in Saratoga Springs, New York
Background information
Origin Rockville, Maryland, United States
Genres Alternative rock, indie rock, roots rock
Years active 1996–present
Labels Vanguard Records, Wind-up Records, Lava Records, Atlantic Records
Associated acts Matt Nathanson, Stephen Kellogg and the Sixers, Brett Dennen, Foxtrot Zulu
Website www.ofarevolution.com
Members Marc Roberge
Chris Culos
Richard On
Benj Gershman
Jerry DePizzo

O.A.R. (short for Of a Revolution) is an American rock band, founded in 1996 in Rockville, Maryland. The band consists of lead vocalist/guitarist Marc Roberge, drummer Chris Culos, guitarist Richard On, bassist Benj Gershman, and saxophonist/guitarist Jerry DePizzo. Together, the band has released eight studio albums, including their latest release, The Rockville LP, in June 2014. The band is well known for their live shows and extensive summer touring, and have released five records of various live performances to date. Four of the band members grew up in Rockville, Maryland and attended The Ohio State University where they met the fifth member, saxophonist/guitarist Jerry DePizzo from Youngstown, Ohio.

History[edit]

Formation and early years (1996–2004)[edit]

O.A.R. was founded in 1996 by lead vocalist Marc Roberge and drummer Chris Culos, inspired in part by Roberge's older brother, who plays drums for the band Foxtrot Zulu. They later recruited Richard On and Benj Gershman. In 1997 they recorded their debut album, The Wanderer, at Gizmo Recording Company in Silver Spring, Maryland with engineer/producer Gantt Kushner. Many songs from the album, including "Black Rock" and "That Was a Crazy Game of Poker", became staples of their live shows and are still played at most of their concerts today.

The four band members graduated from Wootton High School in Rockville, Maryland, then moved to Columbus, Ohio to attend The Ohio State University. While at Ohio State, they met Jerry DePizzo, from Youngstown, Ohio. He joined the band as the saxophonist, completing the current lineup. In 1999, they returned to Gizmo Recording to record their second album, Soul's Aflame.

Unlike other similar bands, O.A.R. did not use much formal advertising/marketing plans to obtain an audience, instead choosing to rely on word-of-mouth alone. Throughout the next few years, the band played as many shows as they could, expanding from the fraternities and sororities of Ohio State to any audiences that cared to listen. This exposure paid off; their third album Risen debuted at No. 11 on the Billboard top internet sales chart. The following year, their fourth album In Between Now and Then debuted at No. 156 on the Billboard 200 chart. They received offers from various major labels, but ultimately chose to sign with Lava Records.

Mainstream success (2005–present)[edit]

In 2005, O.A.R. released their fifth album, Stories of a Stranger, which debuted at No. 40 on the Billboard 200. It produced the singles "Love and Memories," "Heard the World," and "Lay Down." "Love and Memories" was the band's first single to chart and receive significant radio airplay, peaking at 98 in the Pop 100, at 30 in Modern Rock Tracks, and at 18 in Adult Top 40. The music videos for "Love and Memories" and "Lay Down" received airplay on VH1 and MTV. The video for "Lay Down" received a "Woodie" award from MTV for streaming video. The new partnership with Lava also seemed to mark the beginning of a shift in the band's fundamental style. Many of the tracks on "Stories of a Stranger" and subsequent albums have displayed a willingness by the band to move away from the reggae, ska, and jam band inspired sound of their earlier albums, in favor of songs with shorter run-times, less acoustic instrumentation, and more pop-inspired arrangements.

On January 14, 2006, O.A.R. reached a new peak of popularity by drawing roughly 18,000 fans and selling out New York City's Madison Square Garden, which earned them a review in the New York Times.[1] On October 5, 2006, a press release declared that O.A.R. had officially sold in excess of 1.2 million albums over their career.[2] The band attributes much of its popularity to the recording and subsequent trading and downloading of their live shows.

On July 15, 2008, O.A.R. released their sixth studio album, All Sides. The first radio single for All Sides, "Shattered (Turn the Car Around)," was released for download on June 13. It surpassed "Love And Memories," peaking at 2 in Adult Top 40. In December 2008, VH1 named the music video for "Shattered" as number 18 on their Top 40 Videos of 2008. During the 2008 All Sides tour, the All Sides album was released on USB Wristband along with instant live recordings of their concerts. After the tour, O.A.R. released their fourth live album (Rain or Shine) on January 12, 2010.[3]

In 2010, O.A.R. returned to the studio to record their seventh studio album, King. The band introduced several of their new songs during the 2010 tour, including: "Over and Over," "Fire," "Dangerous Connection," and "Gotta Live." King was released on Wind-up Records on August 2, 2011 and debuted at number 12 on the Billboard 200, the highest-charting debut for the band so far. The album's first single, "Heaven", was released on June 7, 2011. The next single, "Gotta Be Wrong Sometimes", failed to chart. On May 8, 2012, O.A.R. released a new single as part of a collaboration with Duracell in support of Team USA in the 2012 London Summer Olympics. The song is called "Champions", and features rapper B.o.B, who contributed the vocals in the verses.

On November 19, 2012, O.A.R. released a live CD/DVD entitled Live on Red Rocks, which consists of footage and music from their performance at Red Rocks Amphitheater on their 2012 summer tour.[3]

In an interview with Billboard magazine posted on January 16, 2014, Jerry Depizzo revealed that their eighth studio album would be released in May of 2014, and that the lead single would be "Peace" - a new song they played live many times on their 2013 summer tour. On March 21, 2014, the band announced via various social media sites that the new album, titled The Rockville LP would be released on June 10, 2014.

Members[edit]

Full-Time Touring members

Part-Time Touring Members

  • Jon Lampley (trumpet, sousaphone, backing vocals, 2011–present)
  • Evan Oberla (trombone, backing vocals, 2011–present)
Timeline

Charitable endeavors and other appearances[edit]

The band's Heard The World foundation was founded to support youth, education and sustainable programs both in the U.S. and abroad.[4]

On December 14, 2012, O.A.R. performed with the Baltimore symphony at Strathmore Music Hall. The concert benefited the Heard the World Foundation.

In December 2009, Jerry DePizzo headlined a charity fundraiser for Music Loves Ohio in Columbus at The Basement.[5]

The band teamed up with the large US defense contractor, SAIC, to raise money for the Paralyzed Veterans of America, a service organization focused on assisting veterans with spinal cord injuries and diseases, through digital downloads of the band's song "Light Switch Sky." Proceeds from downloads of the song through July 22, 2010 will support paralyzed veterans. The song was co-written by O.A.R. and its fans through a competition on Twitter.[6]

In August 2010, members Benj Gershman and Marc Roberge appeared in two videos for Diet Coke's Stay Extraordinary campaign.

On October 4, 2012, the band headlined a "But for Ohio State: Rock the Oval" concert at Ohio State University to help raise money for the school that all the band's members attended.

The 2014 Tour of OAR and Phillip Phillips will benefit Habitat for Humanity.

Song appearances[edit]

  • O.A.R. performed the theme song for the ABC show Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. During a two-hour special that aired on December 11, 2005, they provided a street-side concert, including a live performance of "So Much", the Extreme Makeover Home Edition theme, in front of the newly redesigned Los Angeles Free Clinic.
  • In 2006, O.A.R. Performed at the MLB's Home Run Derby at PNC Park in Pittsburgh, Singing "Love and Memories" and other titles.
  • In 2006, the band's song "Love and Memories" was featured in the movie She's the Man.[7]
  • In June 2007 the band's songs "Wonderful Day" and "One Shot" were used extensively by ESPN during its coverage of the 2007 NCAA Division I Baseball Tournament and College World Series; "This Town" was similarly used in 2008
  • In 2008, their song "Love is Worth The Fall" was featured on the deluxe edition soundtrack for the film Twilight. The song was also released as an iTunes single.
  • On Oct. 16 2011, the songs "Heaven" and "Wonderful Day" were played during "iGenius," a documentary about the life and death of Steve Jobs which was hosted by Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman of MythBusters.

Discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

Title Details Peak chart positions
US
[8]
US
Alt

[9]
US Indie
[10]
US Rock
[11]
The Wanderer
Soul's Aflame
  • Release date: April 8, 1999
  • Label: Oarfin Records
  • Formats: CD, cassette
Risen 44
In Between Now and Then
  • Release date: May 27, 2003
  • Label: Lava Records
  • Formats: CD, cassette
54
Stories of a Stranger
  • Release date: October 4, 2005
  • Label: Lava Records
  • Formats: CD, music download
40
All Sides
  • Release date: July 15, 2008
  • Label: Lava/Atlantic Records
  • Formats: CD, music download
13 3 4
King
  • Release date: August 2, 2011
  • Label: Wind-up Records
  • Formats: CD, music download
12 2
The Rockville LP
  • Release date: June 10, 2014
  • Label: Vanguard Records
  • Formats: CD, music download
13 6

Live albums[edit]

Title Details Peak chart positions
US
[8]
US
Alt

[9]
US Indie
[10]
US Rock
[11]
Any Time Now
  • Release date: May 6, 2002
  • Label: Everfine Records
  • Formats: CD, cassette
156 11
34th & 8th
  • Release date: July 27, 2004
  • Label: Everfine Records
  • Formats: CD, music download
80 6
Live from Madison Square Garden
  • Release date: June 5, 2007
  • Label: Atlantic Records
  • Formats: DVD, CD, music download
69 23
Rain or Shine
  • Release date: January 12, 2010
  • Label: Everfine/Atlantic Records
  • Formats: CD, music download
49 7 5 10
Live on Red Rocks
  • Release date: November 19, 2012
  • Label: Wind Up Records
  • Formats: DVD, CD, music download
_ _ _ _
"—" denotes releases that did not chart

Extended plays[edit]

Title Details Peak positions
US
[8]
Hello, Tomorrow
  • Release date: 2009
  • Label: Atlantic Records
  • Formats: CD, music download
180

Singles[edit]

Year Single Peak chart positions Certifications
(sales threshold)
Album
US
[12]
US
AC

[13]
US
Adult

[14]
US
Alt

[15]
US
Pop

[16]
CAN
[17]
2003 "Hey Girl" 26 In Between Now and Then
2004 "Right on Time"
2005 "Love and Memories" 116 17 30 Stories of a Stranger
2006 "Heard the World" 24
"Lay Down"
2008 "This Town" (re-released to radio in 2009) 119 17 All Sides
"Shattered (Turn the Car Around)" 36 14 2 25 43
2011 "Heaven" 21 King
"Gotta Be Wrong Sometimes"
2014 "Peace" 117 15 The Rockville LP
"—" denotes releases that did not chart

Album appearances[edit]

Compilation name (year, song title)

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Sanneh, Kelefa (January 16, 2006). "A Scrappy Jam Band, but Hold the Jam". The New York Times. Retrieved May 20, 2010. 
  2. ^ Press Release (2006). "O.A.R. Makes History With Over 1 Million Sold" marketwire.com (accessed October 6, 2006)
  3. ^ a b Chicago live album announcement
  4. ^ http://www.heardtheworld.org
  5. ^ http://www.dispatch.com/live/content/weekender/stories/2009/12/17/9A_MUSIC17_ART_12-17-09_T10_9GG0EH7.html
  6. ^ http://www.saic.com/oar/news/062110.html?
  7. ^ She's the Man Soundtrack
  8. ^ a b c "O.A.R. Album & Song Chart History – Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved June 14, 2011. 
  9. ^ a b "O.A.R. Album & Song Chart History – Alternative Albums". Billboard. Retrieved June 14, 2011. 
  10. ^ a b "O.A.R. Album & Song Chart History – Independent Albums". Billboard. Retrieved June 14, 2011. 
  11. ^ a b "O.A.R. Album & Song Chart History – Rock Albums". Billboard. Retrieved June 14, 2011. 
  12. ^ "O.A.R. Album & Song Chart History – Hot 100". Billboard. Retrieved June 14, 2011. 
  13. ^ "O.A.R. Album & Song Chart History – Adult Contemporary". Billboard. Retrieved June 14, 2011. 
  14. ^ "O.A.R. Album & Song Chart History – Adult Pop Songs". Billboard. Retrieved June 14, 2011. 
  15. ^ "O.A.R. Album & Song Chart History – Alternative Songs". Billboard. Retrieved June 14, 2011. 
  16. ^ "O.A.R. Album & Song Chart History – Pop Songs". Billboard. Retrieved June 14, 2011. 
  17. ^ "O.A.R. Album & Song Chart History – Canadian Hot 100". Billboard. Retrieved June 14, 2011. 
  18. ^ a b "RIAA – Recording Industry Association of America – Searchable Database". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved June 14, 2011. 

External links[edit]