Louisville's Ben Thornewill from Jukebox the Ghost talks about their new release, 'Safe Travels' [Music]
Louisville.com: You all perform live a lot. How many shows have you done to promote Safe Travels? What is the hardest part about touring as much as you all do?
Thornewill: The CD was released June 12 so we haven’t done a whole lot of shows since the CD released. I think we have done 10-12 so far, but we have been playing off the album for the past 9-10 months for 50-60 shows. Touring and playing shows is our mode and means to success. The hardest part about touring is having a bunch of creative people in the same space. You eat, sleep, and live together which is probably the reason many bands end up breaking up. We manage to get along well. It is hard traveling and not having a home to be able to center yourself.
Louisville.com: What has been your favorite show on your current tour so far and why?
Thornewill: It’s a tossup between New York and DC’s shows. New York was sold out six to seven weeks before. The shows were packed with energy and feeling of excitement. Hopefully this is positive foreshadowing of future shows.
Louisville.com: You have a couple shows coming up nearby in Cincinnati and Nashville. For those people who have not been to one of your shows what would you tell people to expect?
Thornewill: Unadulterated joy and excitement. It will be a good time. Plan on having a good time.
Louisville.com: You have a couple shows coming up near Louisville in Cincinnati and Nashville. I hope to come see you guys live.
Thornewill: We will also be playing a Waterfront Wednesday in Louisville sometime in August.
Louisville.com: Well I’ll definitely have to hit that one up. Speaking of venues and locations, is there any particular dream venue or location that you would really like to play at but haven’t?
Thornewill: Red Rocks outside Denver. It is this amphitheater placed between these huge rocks. It is really cool place and we played a music festival inside when we were first starting out. It would be great to be able to go back and play outside.
Louisville.com: WFPK has been playing “Somebody” on the radio a lot here in Louisville. Have you heard yourself on the radio in Louisville?
Thornewill: Actually I heard it on the radio yesterday on my way to my grandmother’s. It was the first song to come on when I got in the car. It’s the second time ever. It is really exciting. I used to listen to WFPK driving to high school, and I’d turn the radio to WFPK when doing the dishes. I’ve always listened to WFPK so hearing us on there is special and really exciting.
Louisville.com: Is there a particular song on Safe Travels that is your favorite?
Thornewill: I have two favorite songs to listen to. “Devil’s On Our Side” and “All For You” starts out quiet and builds to something big and have a lot of classical influence. “Devil’s On Our Side” goes into “All For You.”
Louisville.com: For all the music nerds out there, what kind of gear do you use?
Thornewill: I use a Kurzweil as my main keyboard. It has a great range of expression. I also use an Alesis QS 6.1 synthesizer.
Louisville.com: Well I don’t want to take up too much of your time. Is there anything else you would like to share with readers?
Thornewill: We will have a music video for “Somebody” next week filmed on Coney Island. Check it out.
Louisville.com: Well Ben, thanks for taking time to chat with me despite your busy schedule.
Thornewill: Thank you for the interview!
After listening through Safe Travels for the first time I am a new Jukebox fan. You can tell they are inspired to some degree by the The Beatles, Yes and Coldplay. The gorgeous melodic string arrangements and upbeat piano pop rock sound is indeed happy sounding despite some of the darker themes. They have garnered a mature sound that is unique and catchy.
Jukebox the Ghost will be playing in and around Louisville this summer:
- July 13—The High Watt, 8 p.m., 1 Cannery Row, Nashville, TN 37203
- July 14—Bunbury Music Festival, 11 a.m., Cincinnati, OH
- August 29—Waterfront Wednesday presented by 91.9 WFPK
Photos: Courtesy Jukebox the Ghost