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Occurs on Friday August 30 2024

Approximate running time: 2 hours


Big Top Chautauqua Tent Venue
32525 Ski Hill Road
Bayfield WI 54814

Event Notes

Dance Alert!


Friday, August 30, 2024
Doors Open: 5:30PM
Show: 7:30PM

Tickets: $39/$46/$58

Blue Canvas Club Presale: Tue, Mar 5, 2024 - 12:00PM CT
General Public Sale: Tue, Mar 12, 2024 - 12:00PM CT

Sponsored by: Super H Foods - Pat Hunt

Launched following the dissolution of influential Twin Cities band Trip Shakespeare, Semisonic first emerged to widespread acclaim with their 1996 debut, Great Divide . While the album was a critical hit (Rolling Stone called it “a record of simple but sparkling modern pop, rattling with power-trio vitality”), the group’s commercial breakthrough didn’t arrive until the 1998 release of their sophomore album, Feeling Strangely Fine , which went platinum on the strength of its chart-topping lead single, “Closing Time.” Nominated for a GRAMMY, the track was a radio juggernaut that would go on to land in countless film and television soundtracks and come to define the sound of an entire decade of rock and roll. Years of gritting it out on the road eventually took its toll on the band, though, and after releasing one more album in 2001, the trio decided to part ways for an amicable but indefinite hiatus.

During the group’s time apart, Slichter became a celebrated writer and commentator, contributing to the New York Times and NPR in addition to earning high praise for his 2004 memoir, So You Wanna Be a Rock & Roll Star. He would go on to join the faculty at Sarah Lawrence, where he currently teaches creative nonfiction. Munson continued to make his career in music, performing and recording regularly with a variety of bands including The Twilight Hours, The Fragrants, and The New Standards, whose annual holiday show has been a Minneapolis staple for nearly 20 years. A lifelong lover of radio, he became the Music Director for American Public Media's WITS and a frequent guest host of Minnesota Public Radio's The Current .

Wilson, meanwhile, moved to Los Angeles and established himself as one of the most prolific, diverse, and accomplished songwriters of the modern era, taking home an Album of the Year GRAMMY for Adele’s 21 (which featured three of his co-writes, including “Someone Like You”), earning a Song of the Year GRAMMY for “Not Ready To Make Nice” (one of six tracks he co-wrote on The Chicks’ Taking The Long Way ), and collaborating with living legends like Carole King, Celine Dion, and the Preservation Hall Jazz Band; pop stars like Taylor Swift, Pink, and Leon Bridges; country artists like Chris Stapleton and Dierks Bentley; and indie rockers like My Morning Jacket, Mitski, Phantogram, and Claud among countless others. At the same time, Wilson also established himself as a celebrated solo artist, releasing a series of albums, EPs, and singles under his own name that found him working in the studio with everyone from Rick Rubin and Sheryl Crow to Sara Bareilles and Nickel Creek’s Sean and Sara Watkins.

Though Semisonic would reunite sporadically through the years for one-offs and charity shows, Wilson wasn’t sure he’d ever be able to write for the band again until a creative breakthrough led him to You’re Not Alone . Released in 2020, the five-track EP brought the band back into the studio for the first time in two decades and earned glowing reviews from Rolling Stone, SPIN, Stereogum, and more.

On Little Bit Of Sun , Semisonic’s first full-length album in more than 20 years, that hopeful spirit shines through. Recorded in the band’s native Minneapolis and featuring appearances from special guests including Jason Isbell and Jim James, the collection offers a deeply moving reflection on growth, gratitude, and commitment in the face of change and uncertainty. The songs walk a tightrope between raw energy and tender beauty, balancing power pop muscle with acoustic intimacy. Bassist John Munson and drummer Jacob Slichter’s performances are finely tuned to match, infusing Wilson’s bright, buoyant melodies with touches of melancholy and darkness that perpetually haunt the periphery. While it would be easy for a band like Semisonic to revel in nostalgia, Little Bit Of Sun instead looks to the past with appreciation rather than longing, pairing a profound thankfulness for the journey with an infectious excitement for all that’s still to come.

Semisonic - Closing Time (Official Music Video)

Ticket Fees

*Plus applicable taxes and fees

  • 5.5% State and local sales tax
  • $4 Facility Fee per ticket (facility fee is used for tent, building, and grounds needs)
  • 3% Processing and handling fee per order.
  • ALL TICKET SALES ARE FINAL. No refunds or exchanges will be given.


By purchasing a ticket to this event, you and your party agree to abide by the following conditions:

  • Attendees grant unrestricted rights & licenses for use of their likeness in any form of public broadcast and production, and for promotional purposes
  • Big Top Chautauqua reserves the right to refuse admission or evict anyone from the venue premises due to disorderly behavior without issuing a refund.
  • Big Top Chautauqua reserves the right to search all persons, packages, bags, and other items entering venue grounds and/or other properties owned by Lake Superior Big Top Chautauqua. The safety of our guests, volunteers, staff, and artists are top priority.
  • All venue policies and procedures are subject to change without notice.

Make an annual donation of $125 or more and receive exclusive access to ticket pre-sales, usually a week before the general public. Learn more about the Blue Canvas Club HERE

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