ISHPEMING — A local drummer has made a name for himself throughout a large audience throughout his career, but he’s recently expanded his audience by several million after going viral.
The musician is Ishpeming native Wayne Oien, who is quite possibly the person most shocked after a video of him practicing just a half-mile from our studio at Al-Quaal went viral. Oien has had a lot of success throughout his career including winning the DCA International Snare Drum Championship in 2011. Since then, Oien typically opens his computer to find two or three e-mails with questions from other drummers.
“I opened up my computer and it was at 8,000,” said Drummer Wayne Oien, “and I thought, ‘what is going on here?'”
The video was taken in 2012 but was posted by Larry Hammond at the beginning of February this year. Oien said the video currently has 24 million views and describes the feeling as euphoric and comparable to a cribbage world champion.
“In that circle, you’re pretty well-known and it’s exciting. But the rest of the world, they don’t know who he is. That’s kind of the way this has been, up until now, with this practice video that I don’t understand to this day what happened with that.”
Oien can be found playing in several local bands to this day.