The Astronomers conclude first national tour


Cory Sparks / Advance-Titan – The Astronomers traveled across the country and visited new and old venues on their first tour.

Mattie Beck, Arts & Entertainment Editor

The Astronomers, a band made up of UW Oshkosh student Michael Stensland and alumnus Ben Baker, embarked on their first national tour in January. 

Their tour started in Milwaukee, and took them up all around the Midwest and beyond, including going on The Rock Boat, known as “a floating musical festival at sea.” 

The tour ended  Feb. 4 in La Crosse, and the band is now taking a break until a show in April. 

Lead singer Stensland said he was  happy with the touring outcome.

“We had a blast,” Stensland said. “It was such an incredible experience.”

The Astronomers did a lot of traveling, including stopping at different places while cruising on  The Rock Boat.

“We also got on a cruise ship that sailed from Miami to the Bahamas and the Dominican Republic. We played four  shows on the boat and played alongside acts such as Neon Trees, American Authors and Lit,” Stensland said. 

While on the tour, the band was able to see lots of fans from across the country, some of whom traveled long distances.

“We had fans drive nine hours to see us at these shows. We had people drive from Canada to Michigan,” Stensland said. 

That meant they had a lot of packed houses, according to Stensland.

 “We almost sold out five of the venues, three of which were places we have never played before,” he said. 

The band was able to grow throughout the tour, but the highlight of it just being on tour in general. 

“I think the best part of touring was just getting to experience it all,” Stensland said. “There wasn’t really anything in particular [I liked most] but more so just learning everything about what it means to tour.”

But there were still downsides to touring, Stensland said.

“If we had to pick the worst parts of the tour, it probably was any time we had to fly. We got stuck in the airport both times and it was not fun,” he said. 

As for plans post-tour, the band is focusing on making music and focusing on themselves. 

“Right now our focus is making music until I graduate,” Strensland said.

 “We do have a big show in Green Bay on April 1, but just expect a lot of new music,” he said. 

That performance will be held at the Meyer Theater in Green Bay.

“We just released a new single called ‘Orange Afternoon’ on Feb. 10. It’s out everywhere.”