Back in 2008, a band from Minneapolis, Minnesota called 'Rocket Club,' skyrocketed out of the gate, and accomplished a goal that no other Minnesota band has been able to do since that time, or before. This independent, unsigned group had three of their songs land on the Billboard County music charts. That means without any major label backing, they were able to create a serious buzz in the country music industry.

You can listen to my interview with Chris by clicking on the player below:

AM 1240 WJON logo
Get our free mobile app


The band hit the road, writing their own style of music, and recording their harmony-heavy style of music, and as you can imagine, playing night after night after night.

In 2014, after releasing their 4th studio album entitled 'Lucky,' they decided it was time to take a break, and the band members decided to go their separate ways.

Photo by Rocket Club
Photo by Rocket Club


I interviewed Chris Hawkey, one of the lead singers of the band, who said that the band was surprised that they continued to build a following after they split. Their music was still being played and shared even though they weren't together anymore.

The members of the band include:

Chris Hawkey - Vocals
Billy Thommes - Drums
Matt Kirkwold - Guitars, Vocals
Don Smithmier - Vocals, Keyboards
Brian Kroening - Guitars
Joel Sayles - Vocals, Bass, Guitars


The group recently got together to surprise one of the members at a surprise birthday party celebration, and the band played a few songs together and thought about recording some music. Pretty soon, the whole band was back together again, and now Rocket Club has a new record and a new tour.

The new album is called 'Come on Home,' and will be available on February 1st. Rocket Club will be performing in Saint Cloud on Thursday, March 30th at Pioneer Place. Tickets are almost completely sold out to the show already, but you can check and see if you can grab some by going to

You can also follow the band by heading to their website: You'll be able to find tour information and pre-order a limited edition vinyl copy of their new album for just $20.

Watch the incredible interview from CBS News on their story and return to the music scene in the video below.

Chris Hawkey had an exciting moment on 'Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.'  Famous North Dakota actor Josh Duhamel mentioned his name. See the exciting moment. It happens at about 1:50 in the video.



Rockville, Pictures

This $1 Million Home in Sartell Has an Indoor Basketball Court

Here are the Restaurants that Opened in the St. Cloud Area in 2022

More From AM 1240 WJON