To see Aaron’s new video of his song “Call Your Mom,” see below.
To see the list of artists who have performed on Ocracoke and hear their original songs, click here.
By Peter Vankevich
Aaron LaVigne (pronounced LaVinay) loves performing on Ocracoke. It’s a welcome respite from his demanding career in New York City where he has performed in many theatrical shows.
“In New York, it’s amazing to see and work with the most talented people,” he said about his career. “I see some of the best music, one-man shows and avant-garde performances, as well as the big Broadway performances that take years to develop,” he said. “Being in their presence is inspiring and makes me a better artist.”
Like most performers, he works on contract, which gives him the opportunity to take time off and come to Ocracoke to perform.
Hailing from Cincinnati, Ohio, he comes from a musical family. His father was a drummer and taught him to play snare, and Aaron later learned the guitar.
Inspired by his high school drama teacher and a local theater program for kids, Aaron started thinking of making the theater his career. After a year at the University of Cincinnati, he then went to the University of Northern Kentucky.
“There I studied drama, musical theater and improv, and all kinds of crazy stuff that set me on my journey that eventually got me to Ocracoke,” he said in an interview on the island last summer. He attributes a voice teacher in college for helping to develop his singing style.
Around 2003, he discovered Ocracoke while as a college student, he performed for two summers in “The Lost Colony” on Roanoke Island, Dare County.
His theatrical acting include the Broadway production of “Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark” and “Rent” in which he performed off-Broadway and on a national tour. In his free time while on the road was when he started writing music seriously. Two of Aaron’s albums are “The DownTown Crowd” (2010) and “Call Your Mom” (2014).
Aaron is equally comfortable performing on his own and with others, including his band, Aaron & The DownTown Crowd.
“I like to do both,” he said. “Whether its solo, with a band or on a big stage, it’s the same, all working toward the same result which is making a connection.”
Ocracoke is a big inspiration for his songs.
“There is a lot of beauty–especially the beach–to be found here, as well as some sadness,” he said.
Aaron will perform at several venues throughout the summer here, including at the Ocrafolk Festival June 3 to 5 with Jonathan Walsh and TJ Moss of the Yes Team.
His brother Adam, a drummer who lives in Cincinnati, also will perform on the island with the band The River City Roustabout. The two perform together when their paths cross.
Check out the Ocracoke Observer entertainment calendar in the summer newspaper issues and online for the dates for his performances on the island.