As previously announced via this Web site, the 17-year-old son of Elton's late keyboardist and arranger, Guy Babylon, recently changed the name of his Ben Babylon Band to The Episodes.
The name change reflects Ben's desire to shift the focus to the whole ensemble, even though he remains front and center as lead vocalist, keyboard player and vocalist.
There are other differences in the band, besides the new name, including the addition of Jacob Staben, who plays rhythm guitar, keyboards and percussion. He joins long-time band members Alex Arnaout (bassist), Jagger Krusen (drummer) and Brian Schwartz (lead guitarist).
“The name The Episodes could have any number of meanings,” Ben explained. “It could mean a period of time or a show, or it could be a mental breakdown type of episode. I think we, as The Episodes, will have many ‘episodes’ or chapters, as we continue to develop and try new things, musically.”
Ben describes The Episodes as a high-energy, piano-based alternative rock band which experiments with other musical genres. That musical versatility will be on display for the first time under the band’s new name on Saturday, November 22, when The Episodes open for Grammy-winning R&B artist Macy Gray at the Canyon Club in Agoura Hills, California.
With six studio albums behind her, Gray has been nominated for five Grammy awards, winning one for I Try, from her multi-platinum debut album On How Life Is. In addition to her music, Gray is an accomplished actress, having appeared in numerous TV shows and movies, including Training Day, Spider-Man, Lackawanna Blues and more.
“A lot of our musical influences are R&B,” Ben said. “Although we are not an R&B band, we try to capture the soul that so many R&B singers and bands have, in our rock music.”
Ben has been working on an album with members of Elton's group and Grammy-winning producer Matt Still, among others. The first single by The Episodes, with Still as producer, is titled Never Stop. It is available on Bandcamp at-- https://theepisodesmusic.bandcamp.com/releases
“Everybody in The Episodes contributes creatively, in different ways,” Ben remarked. “We still play some of the songs we used to perform as the Ben Babylon Band, but reimagined. We are also doing a lot of new material that our fans have never heard. I can’t wait for people to hear our new music.”
Ben Babylon and The Episodes will open for Macy Gray at the Canyon Club, 28912 Roadside Drive, Agoura Hills, CA, on November 22. Doors open at 6:00 p.m. Also performing will be Sayed Sabrina. The show starts at 7:15, with Macy Gray going on at 9:00 p.m. Tickets are $28, $38 and $58, and can be ordered through www.BabylonMusic.biz (which also has photos of Matt, Ben and the group), or by calling the Canyon Club at 818-879-5016.