Ben Rector sells out the Jones Assembly for two consecutive nights


Sidney Norman

Ben Rector and his band during their second show of the two-night experience at the Jones Assembly on the "Magic" tour.

Sidney Norman, North Photo Editor

On March 8-9, 2019, Tulsa native Ben Rector played at the Jones Assembly in OKC, delivering a two-night electrifying experience to fans on part two of his “Magic” tour. 21-year-old singer-songwriter, Josie Dunne, was Ben’s opener on the Spring stretch of the tour and brought an unmatched energy to fans. Growing up in La Grange, Illinois, Dunne performed locally throughout the Chicago area during high school before signing with Atlantic Records and releasing her hit single, “Old School”, in 2018. Though still a young, rising artist, Dunne’s experience in the music industry demonstrates both her maturity and future potential. Her quirky, yet soulful sound paired with Rector’s spontaneity created an uncomparable dynamic duo.

Ben played back-to-back sold out shows at the Jones Friday and Saturday, which had never been done before at this venue. Similar to the rest of his tour, Ben opened both shows from offstage with the album’s first track entitled “Extraordinary Magic” before appearing onstage midway through the song. In its entirety Magic delivers tracks filled with nostalgia and power, which is why this slow piano track followed by “I Will Always Be Yours” make for the perfect opening. The mysterious question of where Ben was created anticipation in fans and adds to the experience.

During every show, Ben takes a moment to acknowledge and emphasize the importance of his band. He fully introduces each member and then they each play a solo to wow the crowd. This shows the down-to-earth side of his personality and the relationship he has with the rest of his band. After introductions, the band led into their 2015 track “Paris” accompanied by video on a hanging oversized cloth “screen”. The use of home videos and music video clips from hits including Rick Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up” have been the centerpiece of both parts of the tour. Towards the end of the show fans opened up the pit while Ben stood on the floor and serenaded the crowd with his rendition of Shania Twain’s “You’re Still the One”.

After coming back on stage for their encore, the band played “The Men that Drive Me

Places”  and closed with “Brand New”. The encore is not to be overlooked because these two songs take the audience from crying to jumping around in a mere nine minutes. This was the last local show on the tour, but there’s no doubt the Oklahoma native will be back to play at the Jones again in the coming years.

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