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Former ‘Show Choir Dancing Kid’ Finding Success As Singer-Songwriter

July 22, 2008

By Terry Rindfleisch, La Crosse Tribune, Wis.

Jul. 22–Tony Zobeck is trying to make his mark as a singer-songwriter. The 24-year-old La Crosse native is coming into his own and has a following at coffeehouses in the Twin Cities and at the Fine Line Music Cafe. Of course, Zobeck said, he would like to be better known, but that doesn’t mean he necessarily wants to be popular.

“I do music for artistic expression and don’t write songs to be popular,” Zobeck said. “But if that happens, that’s OK, too.

“My niche is that my music can stand on its own vocally, and I’m not a guitar player turned singer,” he said. “I’m a singer turned guitar player.”

Zobeck, who received a degree in public relations from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse in 2007, does his own marketing and created his own Web site at www.tonyzobeck.com.

His songs will be available Aug. 10 on iTunes.

“I’m as independent as you can be, and I’m just trying to get my name out there so I can spend more time performing,” he said. “It’s a challenge to be noticed and a lot of hard work.”

Zobeck writes his own music, and most of his two-hour show features his tunes. He recently released his second CD, “Fragments,” recorded in his home studio in St. Paul.

“The CD is about broken pieces, broken hearts and putting them back together again,” he said.

He will perform Thursday and Aug. 7 at the Courtyard Marriott.

Zobeck describes his music as acoustic rock/independent music.

“A lot of music is making sense of life,” he said. “It’s focused on my story and what I have learned along the way.” A 2002 Central High School graduate, Zobeck was a member of Central’s Grand Central Station show choir, sang in Robed Choir and formed an a cappella quartet, Harmonic State.

“Coming back to La Crosse, people are finding out I’m a musician,” Zobeck said. “Some people still think I’m that show choir dancing kid.”

Zobeck, who works at Blockbuster Video during the day, has performed in the La Crosse and Decorah, Iowa, areas. Zobeck released his first CD, “Mourning the Cause,” in June 2007.

He moved to the Twin Cities in January because of more musical opportunities there.

“I needed a new challenge, and the market has opened up to what I’m doing,” Zobeck said. “Most places, audiences have been very receptive.”

He said his short-term goal is to perform more in the Twin Cities area so audiences get to know him and his music.

“My long-term goal is to travel the world and play music, maybe latch on to someone’s tour,” Zobeck said.

IF YOU GO

WHAT: Tony Zobeck performance

WHEN: 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday and Aug. 7

WHERE: The Courtyard Marriott

NEW CD: $10; available online at www.tonyzobeck.com or www.myspace.com/tonyzobeckmusic. Available Aug. 10 on iTunes.

Terry Rindfleisch can be reached at trindfleisch@lacrossetribune.com or (608) 791-8227.

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Copyright (c) 2008, La Crosse Tribune, Wis.

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