Nearly 20 years ago in Aberdeen, MD, a mix of punk, reggae, and pop came together through the formation of Ballyhoo! 5 albums later and thousands of albums sold, Ballyhoo! still continues to play music to the fans they’ve accumulated over the years.
The band’s 5th studio album, Pineapple Grenade, was released in the middle of last year and met with generally positive reviews. In fact, I got to review it last year as well, which you can read about here.
Currently, their summer tour, the (hilariously named) #superhappyfunmoneytour, has reached the middle of the road as they head east through Texas and ultimately end in New Jersey. However, last Thursday brought the boys to San Diego’s Belly Up Tavern. When the opening bands first began, it seemed like it would be a relatively quiet night, as not alot of people had shown up. But by the time Ballyhoo! took the stage, the venue was packed wall to wall with pumped up fans. As the band began to play, opening with “Diamonds” from their 2011 album, Daydreams, the crowd went nuts.
Ballyhoo! live shows are pure fun. The crowd dances wildly from beginning to end. Singer, Howi Spangler, gets right in the audience when he can step back from the microphone. And the music shifts from mellow vibes to upbeat and fun songs to get moving to. Its been a while since I’ve seen such a mix of relaxed fans, with those ready to dance the night away.