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Ben Rector wins Tulsa’s heart on his American tour

The first time Ben Rector took the stage at Cain’s Ballroom, it wasn’t as the soulful, solo artist he is today. It was several years ago that this Tulsa native competed, and didn’t place, in a battle of the bands as a member of Euro-Mart. Now, years later, Rector graces the stage once more.

Sunday, Nov. 3, Ben Rector made his way back to downtown Tulsa for “The Walking In Between” tour to promote his fifth album.

At 8 p.m., the opening act, Tyrone Wells, took stage with a style most closely relatable to Gavin DeGraw and Train. His songs have been featured in movies like “Something Borrowed” and the CW show, “The Vampire Diaries.” Wells played a set compatible with the energy that would later be established by Rector himself.

As the lights dimmed and instruments joined in one by one, a swell of cheers filled the intimate setting. Shoulder to shoulder, the audience began clapping and lifting their hands as Rector finally walked on stage.

Opening with “Ordinary Love,” a song from his latest album, “The Walking In

Between,” the lights danced with the beat as the familiar tune sounded throughout the venue.

Despite the concert landing on a Sunday night, from the very beginning, Rector set the tone of the night as a relaxed Saturday.

Throughout the concert, only one word could be used to describe Rector: charming. He was interactive with the audience as he added one-liners between songs, and even during his songs. The crowd, mostly teenage to twenty-something girls, giggled as he freely threw out sharp commentary.

The set list was a perfect combination of old and new, soulful and upbeat.

Throughout the night, Rector played singles from “The Walking In Between” like “Beautiful” and “I Like You,” as well as some of the older songs he is most known for, including “Let the Good Times Roll” and “White Dress.”

Rector closed the set with an encore cover of “I Wanna Dance With Somebody,” an unexpected, but enthusiastically greeted hit. The crowd immediately fell into the lively atmosphere, singing along word for word.

At the beginning of the concert, Rector was just another talented performer. He wooed the audience with his meaningful lyrics, playful melodies and endearing personality. At the end of the night, he left the audience like an old friend; it was hard to say goodbye, but exciting to anticipate the next time around.

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