AGT finalist Joey Kar to perform at The LongShot Sept. 18
Excitement is building at The LongShot Sports Pub in Lakemoor for an evening of music featuring "America's Got Talent" finalist Joey Kar.
The fun will start at 4:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 18, when local area band Delta Rising kicks things off with their blend of powerhouse, classic and southern rock. It continues at 7 p.m. when Kar and his band take the stage. Kar, a resident of the small town of Manhattan, Illinois, near Joliet, rose along with Austin Edwards to second place in the 2020 "America's Got Talent" show as the duo Broken Roots.
Claudia Cox, who co-owns The LongShot along with her brother, Paul Gasior, said she could not be more thrilled to see the big-name talent perform at her Lakemoor restaurant and bar. She thanked customer Beverly Hutch, a fan who met Kar during a McHenry performance several months ago, for the introduction.
"I'm so excited," she said. "He's the nicest guy in the world. Every time someone comes in here we're always talking about it."
Admission will be $10, with a VIP ticket available for $15. The VIP admission includes reserved seating and one draft beer. Tickets are available at the bar, 615 W. Route 120, Lakemoor. Cox said she encourages people to buy their tickets in advance, as only a limited number will be sold for the rain-or-shine event.
She added that she is hoping for nice weather so that the night of music can take place on LongShot's new, 1,600-square-foot patio overlooking Lily Lake. Those without VIP tickets may wish to bring a chair, as seating is limited. If the event is moved indoors, capacity will be limited to about 150 people, which is why buying tickets ahead of time could prove wise.
Reached after dropping a daughter off at school, Kar said he is looking forward to the show, and has assembled a terrific group of bandmates for the night.
"I'll have Eric Sommers on drums and Jim Major on bass along with guitarist Josh Nestor," Kar said. "Eric is phenomenal, Jim has played for Styx and Josh is just killer."
Cox said she plans to give 10 percent of the night's admission sales to a McHenry Elementary District 15 music program. When Kar -- who ran a music school from 2011 to 2018 -- heard about that, he was elated.
"I'm all about inspiring kids and giving back," he said. "Kids need to get away from video games and learn how to get out in front of people and take a chance. When I find kids who have the guts to get on stage, I'm all about it."
A talented vocalist and guitarist, Kar also is a former Illinois Department of Corrections tactical team member and served as a Will County Sheriff in the latter part of the last decade. He is a husband and father of three, with a fourth on the way, and said his pandemic-year AGT experience was a whirlwind of highs and lows.
"I was about to reopen my music school when we got the call for AGT," he said. "It was crazy … at one point Broken Roots got cut because they were eliminating more acts than usual due to Covid. Reddit blew up; the Internet blew up. Then we got a call on a Wednesday that we should go out Thursday, and the day the (finalist) live show aired was my 38th birthday. It was pretty cool."
Kar, now 39, said he still plays occasionally with Edwards of Broken Roots, but that the dollar amount those shows now command makes them a less-frequent occurrence than the opportunities to perform solo with session artists.
"Music is who I am and what I do," he said. "You go where you're called to play. Without these venues and without the fans, you wouldn't be playing at all, so I'm always grateful. And thanks to AGT, I can use that connection to help draw larger crowds to smaller venues."