Ho-Chunk musician performs at Twin Cities fundraiser, interviewed on television

By Ken Luchterhand

Corey Rae White, guitarist and vocalist, performed with his band, “Lonesome Losers,” at the annual “Pulling Together” fundraiser on Saturday, Sept. 8, in the Twin Cities.
Before that happened, he and his band members appeared on WCCO Channel 4 television for an interview to promote the event and to perform on Friday, Sept. 7.
The fundraiser involved a “tug-of-war” competition across the Mississippi River with teams from St. Paul competing against teams from Minneapolis. Corey and his band played at the after-party following the “tug-of-war” competition and awards ceremony.
As it currently stands, St. Paul teams have raised $77,258 while Minneapolis teams have raised $69,735 for a combined total of $146,993. The money raised will go toward the Fraser Special Needs Bright Futures, experts in children with special needs and autism.
“It was amazing,” Corey said.
Corey’s band, Lonesome Losers, is a band that plays music termed as “Yacht Rock.” Corey describes the type of soft rock from the Time/Life music collections of the 70s and 80s.
“We played a big outdoor festival a couple weeks ago and a bunch of the newscasters from the CBS station was there. Of all eight bands that played that day, they went back to their news station and wanted the Lonesome Loser band,” Corey said. 
“So, they contacted me and then I made sure the band members were available,” he said. “First off, I was like holy cow, the most-watched television station in the Twin Cities wants us to play an event. Then I looked at the event and realized it benefitted Fraser, to which I wrote a reply email saying, ‘Hey, it really hits home with me. I love the fact that it’s benefiting Fraser and anything I can do above and beyond to help.’ They asked me to do interviews, and then they asked for the band to come in to perform the Morning Show the day before the event.”
When Corey was done being interviewed and the band was playing in the studio, all the newscasters were holding up their cell phones and recording them performing, he said.
Corey’s son, Jesse, now 10, went to Fraser for a few years and has improved considerably because of the help he received, he said.
“It was amazing, first off, to be approached by an organization of that size. And, second off, the fact it benefitted an organization that has done great things for my family, just made it all the better,” Corey said.
According to the producer of the event, the band did such a good job, he wants the Lonesome Losers to be the entertainment every year.
“It’s a very specific type of music and there’s no one else that does it. My guys can really play and it’s not the kind of music you hear from bar bands. It’s a show – it’s five-part harmony, it’s big orchestration,” Corey said.
“These songs are hard to play and it’s taken us several months to practice to get them down. It’s a big undertaking and it’s risky in the sense that no one’s really doing it,” he said. “People picture going to a bar and banging their heads and jumping around to hip-hop music and this is not that. This is smooth love songs with grooves. It’s music I heard as a kid and always been in my head.”
Part of the performance is the comedy, he said. That’s why they dress up like sailors. It’s about fun.
“Part of this is people will make fun of you if you’re singing a love song by Christopher Cross out loud. Also, part of the attraction of coming to the show is you can do that freely and loudly - we’re all doing it.  We’re creating a community of yacht rockers,” Corey said.
During the live broadcast of the Pulling Together event, WCCO reporters interviewed Corey on the beach of the Mississippi River.
“I ended up talking to them in my bright suit,” he said. “It was fun.”
The Lonesome Losers are scheduled to perform at Ho-Chunk Gaming – Black River Falls in January.