Magic Man brings synth rock, wanderlust to UD

By: Katie Christoff and Mary Kate Dorr – A&E Editor and Asst. Editor

Magic Man is going places, and it’s taking listeners along for the ride.

The self-described “triumphant synth rock” band, playing at the University of Dayton Saturday night, broke onto the indie scene over the summer with its first album, Before the Waves, and the single “Paris,” which became a staple for hipster partygoers everywhere.

With song titles like “Paris,” “Texas” and “Chicagoland,” the band has a serious case of wanderlust – due in part to the fact that members (and childhood friends) Alex Caplow and Sam Lee began the project one summer while volunteering to work on organic farms in southern France.

The wanderlust didn’t end after their summer Eurotrip. Magic Man, now a five-piece band featuring Gabe Goodman, Joey Sulkowski and Justine Bowe in addition to Caplow and Lee, has been touring the U.S. ever since releasing Before the Waves in the summer. The band began opening for Smallpools in late 2014, with a sound and fan-base similar to Walk the Moon and Passion Pit. Now Magic Man is in the midst of headlining its own tour, coming to UD fresh off a show at the El Rey Theatre in Los Angeles.

This is the first major concert at UD in over a year, after the Campus Concert Committee (CCC) took 2014 off to save funds in order to bring a bigger act this year. They’ve teamed up with Campus Activity Board (CAB) to plan this year’s Magic Man concert.

Patrick Doyle, president of CAB, said he suggested Magic Man in October after seeing them perform in Columbus.

“We thought by time the concert rolled around, they’re going to be big enough that people would be interested,” Doyle said. “And the cool thing is that people recognize the music now.” He said CAB and CCC have focused on playing the songs on campus during table hours to link the name of the band with songs they’re confident students will recognize.

CCC president Lucas Mccanna is excited about the new partnership with CAB.

“A lot of people don’t know this, but a lot of organizations [on campus] want to have a concert,” Mccanna said. “Looking at campus, there’s so many different people competing – if we pool all our money together, we could have really good shows.”

Though CAB plans a great deal of programming throughout the year, Doyle agreed that the partnership with CCC was a worthwhile one.
“Our goal on a mission statement level is to have alternative programming, and we’re interested in effective programming,” Doyle said of CAB. “We think that concerts are one of the most effective ways to get people to engage in campus events.”

Mccanna and Doyle both encourage students to show their support for more concerts on campus by attending the Magic Man show Saturday.

“Also, the music is awesome!” Doyle added.

Magic Man performs Saturday at 8:30 p.m. at the RecPlex. Doors open at 7 p.m. and Nine Ties will open at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are on sale now for $7 and are available at the KU Box Office and table hours hosted by CAB and CCC. Tickets will be available for the same price at the door. For more information, visit

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