O.A.R. Embraces Their Rockville Roots
It was 2014 and the band O.A.R. was releasing its eighth studio album. After becoming an international success and touring all around the world it seemed fitting to go back to where they started and name their album “The Rockville LP,” after their hometown in Montgomery County, MD.
The album was “a concept where we said…We need to go home and be inspired by where we grew up,” Richard On, O.A.R.’s guitarist, said in an interview with the Washingtonian.
The band members met each other while attending Wootton High School in Rockville. They would play together at the Grand Marquis in Onley and pass out CDs to other students at school. After high school the band went to Ohio State, using Columbus’ nightlife to build the O.A.R.’s reputation.
The band even came back to Wootton High School and played a concert on the football field, back in May of 2001.
Years later in 2008, O.A.R. reached Billboard’s Top 100 chart with their hit single “Shattered (Turn the Car Around). Despite the national fame and attention, O.A.R. didn’t forget their Rockville roots. On described the band coming back and recording in their hometown as “awesome, so nostalgic.”
Rockville isn’t the only place in MoCo that inspired the band. The song “Black Rock” is about place that’s special to you when you need to get away. Black Rock Road in Germantown is where some of the band members would go hang out when they needed that kind of time.
Scattered across the US, O.A.R. is still creating music after 20 years. Although On still lives in the Washington area in Ashburn, Va. He visits Rockville occasionally and still loves the city, adding, “the reason why we loved growing up there was because we felt comfortable in our skin.”
Photo courtesy of O.A.R’s official band website.