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Hawkey to bring his 'Kinda Crazy' to Brainerd

Chris Hawkey of “My Kinda Crazy” will be on the Lakes Jam main stage at 4 p.m. June 27 at Brainerd International Raceway (BIR).

This Twin Cities country singer's mother forced him to answer an ad in the newspaper at age 15 to be a lead singer in a band because he "wanted to be a rock star."

He got the job and now at age 43, Chris Hawkey is still performing and his single "My Kinda Crazy" hit No. 1 on K102's Top 5 at 5 just last week. Hawkey, who spent the last six years as a vocalist in the Minneapolis country band Rocket Club, went on his own this year and will be making his second trip to Lakes Jam this summer. He will be on the main stage at 4 p.m. June 27 at Brainerd International Raceway (BIR).

Hawkey, who was born in Ohio, was in several bands during his early musical career and got into radio as "I needed a real job," he said. Hawkey said his family moved to Maple Grove 19 years ago and joining Rocket Club was the first time where his music was heard at a national level. Hawkey said all the members of Rocket Club were in different bands before the creation of Rocket Club. The band had three singles debut on the Billboard Hot Country Songs including "One More Day" in 2009; "One Thing Beautiful" in 2010; and "North Country" in 2011.

"We didn't even know we were a country band," Hawkey said, until they were on the country charts. "We were doing stuff we never thought of. I kind of gave up on my dream (of being singer) before this. Then we were off to Nashville ... I went from being a dad to a huge country star on the weekend.

"At the end of last year after playing every summer, the band wanted to take a year off and spend time with their families ... I decided to go down to Nashville where I cut my first solo record."

Hawkey worked with a team of studio musicians and producer Jason Perri on his album "All I Can" which includes his hit single "My Kinda Crazy." There are eight songs on the album.

"It's harder than I thought it would be (to go on my own), but in a lot of ways more fulfilling," Hawkey said. "The radio here (Minneapolis) is playing it ('My Kinda Crazy') a lot. When the song comes on and it says my song and my name, it is an amazing feeling; knowing it is possible."

According to Hawkey's website, his new album provides a looking glass view of himself, as a performer and a person. He said his song "Camera" is a fun, upbeat song about capturing a certain moment in time and "All I Can" talks about how people's time on earth is limited.

Hawkey is playing at festivals this summer all around the upper Midwest, including Lakes Jam. Hawkey said having a music festival at BIR is a perfect idea as there is the space for the music arena and camping.

Hawkey said Brainerd fans can expect music from his new record, as well as some songs from Rocket Club.

Hawkey is excited country star Maggie Rose is playing June 27 after his set at Lakes Jam.

"I played with Maggie Rose before and she is a rising star in the country music world," Hawkey said.

What: 2014 Lakes Jam.

When: June 26-28.

Where: Brainerd International Raceway.

The line-up:

June 26: Secondary stage: 6 p.m., Electric Almighty; 8 p.m., 32 Below; and 10 p.m., Chris Hawkey.

June 27 (country night): Secondary stage: 12 p.m., Roadhouse 6; 2 p.m., Jeremiah James Korfe; Last Call, Korfe. On the main stage: 4 p.m., Chris Hawkey; 6 p.m., Bucky Covington; 8 p.m., Maggie Rose; 10 p.m., Clay Walker.

June 28 (rock night): Secondary stage: 12 p.m., King's Ransom; 2 p.m., Madd Company. Last Call, Captain May I. On the main stage: 4 p.m., ThundHerStruck; 6 p.m., Starship Featuring Mickey Thomas; 8 p.m., Uncle Kracker; 10 p.m., Bret Michaels.

Tickets: Tickets and camping are available online at or by phone at 800-514-3849. Camping has been expanded to include full service and reserved sites. Campers can arrive at 8 a.m. June 26. The concert arena opens at 3 p.m. June 26; 10 a.m. on June 27; and 10 a.m. on June 28.