Singer-songwriter Ben Rector dazzled San Antonio’s Aztec theatre with his high-fun performance Saturday night. Josie Dunne was tasked with kicking off the night and she brought her big dance moves and bigger vocal power to make the story true -everything really is bigger in Texas. Her songs ranged from disco to folk to EDM. Who follows up an EDM song with one straight from Gatsby 1920s jazz-age trumpet tune? Are my genres off? I’m a metal kid by nature, so it’s possible, but it felt as though Josie transported me all over music history during her 35 minute set. She even brought me back to my childhood of the ’90s playing her Fisher Price xylophone. Her stage presence alone was enough to earn her a second listen, but you’d be amiss to not give her a chance.
>With the crowd good and warmed up, Ben Rector and his four piece band took the stage with an all-star welcome. Having heard Rector’s albums, I didn’t know what to expect from his live show. I was taken aback by the energy and humor he possessed. The man clearly loves what he does and communicates that well to his audience. The set kicked off with one of my personal favorite tunes, Drive, and was followed up by a strong set list full of unexpected moments and sentimental sweetness. This show may end up claiming the title of “most embarrassing moment on the road” as he recounted to the crowd what happened sitting in a man’s lap in the balcony for Forever Like That – Ben’s in-ear pack took a swim in someone’s beer followed by a near slip off the balcony, minor things, really, turned into a memorable and funny moment for both Ben and the fans to take with them.
The crowd was introduced to the term “phintermission” – an intermission for your phone. Two minutes and thirty seconds were put on the clock for fans to catch a quick glimpse of their phones. Good timing for anyone in dire need of checking the Texas Tech final four score (Wreck ’em). The back half of the show was my favorite because of the sentimental vibes that started to come into play. The use of the backdrop playing different clips was more prominent following the phintermission and added a degree of emotionality to the show. Never one to want to take away the surprises of a show, I’ll leave it up to you to check out the Magic: The Tour and see Ben Rector’s way of taking you back to your childhood and re-living some of the 80s and 90s best moments.
If you’re looking for a good night filled with laughter and great music with a slight trip down memory lane – don’t miss this tour. You can see Josie Dunne and Ben Rector on the remaining dates of Magic: The Tour Part II which are listed below.
April 8 – Phoenix, AZ – The Van Buren
April 9 – Los Angeles, CA – Theatre at Ace Hotel
April 12 – Anaheim, CA – House of Blues
April 13 – San Francisco, CA – The Fillmore
April 15 – Portland, OR – Roseland Theatre
April 16 – Seattle, WA – The Moore Theatre
April 18 – Salt Lake City, UT – The Union
April 19 – Denver, CO – The Fillmore Auditorium
April 20 – Omaha, NE – Sokol Auditorium