Rock band OK Go on viral success, chart-topping hits, and playing at the Belly Up in Solana Beach

OK Go plays July 24 at the Belly Up Tavern in Solana Beach.

By Rob LeDonne

When rock band OK Go rolls into San Diego to play a July 24 gig at Solana Beach’s Belly Up Tavern, it will mark the latest in a string of memorable shows in the region.

“We’ve played in the area a handful of times,” said bassist and vocalist Tim Norwind from his home in Los Angeles.

“Once, the night we released our second-ever record, we made our debut on ‘The Tonight Show,’ then drove down from Burbank to play at (downtown venue) the Casbah. Maybe 50 people show up,” remembers Norwind with a laugh.

The band’s star has risen exponentially since those early days, largely due to a string of indie rock hits, including “Here It Goes Again,” “All Is Not Lost,” and “This Too Shall Pass.”

Aside from their music, the band has become known for creative and intricate music videos, many of which become viral sensations.

“A lot of bands don’t or wouldn’t enjoy making them, but we like the experience,” Norwind said. “We love to make videos that excite people and inspire wonderment, joy, and fun. That’s the kind of stuff people enjoy watching and playing for their friends.”

The band, which started in Chicago, first gained national prominence when the video for its 2005 single “Here It Goes Again” (which featured the members jumping around on treadmills) took off during the early days of viral Internet videos (it boasts nearly 22 million views on YouTube), and later won a Grammy award.

“We’re lucky enough to come up in a time that the Internet has become a showcase space, like an art gallery, where you can make and share things,” Norwind said. “The fact that people like our videos is certainly encouraging.”

The word “like” is probably an understatement. The band’s latest video, for the single “The Writing’s On The Wall,” was posted to YouTube on June 17 and in the past month alone has garnered 9 million views and attention around the globe.

“The song is about a couple breaking up and seeing their relationship two different ways,” said Norwind of the video, which consists of a variety of elaborate optical illusions. “The song and video focuses on perspective and seeing things in a lot of different ways.”

The band members originally had the idea to produce a video with optical illusions and forced perspective four years ago. They reached out to a New York-based production company. From there, it took months to hatch a feasible plan, construct a set, and make their unique vision come to life.

“One day, (lead singer) Damien Kulash had seen an advertisement on BBC 4 which featured camera tricks where, at certain angles, the same thing looks different,” remembers Norwood of the video’s genesis. “We thought we could do it on a bigger scale, and make a cool video.”

The video, single, and Belly Up gig are all in support of their album “Hungry Ghosts,” which comes out Oct. 14. Until then, Norwind and his bandmates are continuing to think of eye-popping new video ideas and are, of course, going to enjoy the Southern California weather.

“We started out in the Midwest, and while I’ll always love it there, the weather (in California) is a major selling point for me,” Norwind said. “Just being able to see hills, mountains, and the ocean — it’s something I didn’t grow up with.”

OK Go will perform at 9 p.m. July 24 at the Belly Up in Solana Beach  (doors open at 8 p.m.). For information, visit or The Belly Up is at 143 S. Cedros Ave., Solana Beach; call 858-481-8140.

Related posts:

  1. Punk rock band X to perform in Solana Beach
  2. Alternative band Deer Tick to perform at Belly Up in Solana Beach
  3. Alternative band Deer Tick to perform at Belly Up in Solana Beach
  4. Solana Beach: Want to win tickets to the Belly Up’s Atomic Groove Christmas Party?
  5. Paul Cannon Band to perform in Solana Beach June 20

Short URL:

Posted by Staff on Jul 16, 2014. Filed under A & E, Music. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

Leave a Reply



Bottom Buttons 1

Bottom Buttons 2

Bottom Buttons 3

Bottom Buttons 4

Bottom Buttons 5

Bottom Buttons 6





  • Czech violin duo to perform at Village Church in Rancho Santa Fe
    In cooperation with the Consulate General of the Czech Republic, the Czech School San Diego hosts a free classical violin concert by internationally recognized Czech violin player Jaroslav Svecený and his daughter, Julie Svecená, who are on a tour of the United States. The concert will be at 7 p.m. Oct. 27 in the Village Church. The father-daughter duo will […]
  • Rancho Santa Fe weekly sports update
    Torrey Pines defeated Canyon Crest Academy 4-3 in a Palomar League opener for both teams on Oct. 9. Alayna Tomlinson and Farah Farjood each scored two goals to lead the Falcons. Samantha “Sammy” Cirino added one goal and one assist. […]
  • ‘Kachina Dolls and Dances’ to be topic at Rancho Santa Fe Historical Society lecture
    Native American expert Dr. James Kemp will discuss “Kachina Dolls and Dances” from 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 25, at the Rancho Santa Fe Historical Society. Katsina figures, also known as kachina dolls (in photo at right), were carved typically from cottonwood root by the Hopi people to instruct young girls and new brides about the katsinas, the im […]