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    Ben Thornewill’s on a piano bench, but he ain’t bound to it. This is no concert recital. This is Jukebox the Ghost. This is power pop. This is Thornewill hammering all over the keyboard. Keyboards. Standing up and grooving as he presses the keys. Playing with one hand while the other points to the audience and the little girls scream, because there are little girls here, the show for 14 year olds and up, quite different for Headliners Music Hall, quite telling, love lyrics tonic in those teen (y)ears. 

    But there are young and old alike here for “Ghost,” as one chica in the audience dubs the indie/pop/rock trio based out of Washington, DC. I’m somewhere in the middle and my bro-vested neighbor tells me he went to Ballard High School with Thornewill and he’s here with a group of old friends supportin’. Louisville represent! He points out Thornewill’s ma and pa; ma mouthing all the words, pa with his arm waving back and forth in air. 

    These mannerisms are repeated throughout Headliners. A baby face holds his heart and stomps his leg and feels the words, feels the desire of wanting, needing “Somebody,” as the song goes. A 20-something hippy chick with dreads and flowy skirt sways and mouthing “All for Love.” An old woman bounces about. There’s a lot of bouncing. Because it’s the kind of music you can’t help but bounce to. Tommy Siegel energetic on guitar and harmonizing with Thornewill who takes the vocal lead while Jesse Kirstin keeps the drumbeat. It’s kind of like Broadway meets Billy Joel meets So Cal meets a clothespin on the nose. 

    If I matter, I’m more of a Thornewill solo fan myself; the lyrics a bit more complex and piano playing whimsical, flirting the skirts of dreams. But still, this is fun. I’m bouncing with the rest of ‘em. The fellas are definitely quality performers, all zest despite lyrics’ heartbreak. For one song they bring out their stuffed animal “tour dog,” let it crowd surf, fly through the air like a beach ball. They joke the joke of “Free Bird.” For last song they bring out the openers and we all walk like bouncy Egyptians. 

    Photo courtesy of Tim Girton 

    Arielle Reyna Christian's picture

    About Arielle Reyna Christian

    Oh me! Just a screamer and dreamer. Poet, know it. Righter writer. Too much wordplay is good for the soul. Arts all around. Hooty hoo!

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