Talking Heads tribute serves as fundraising concert in support of Stivers School for the Arts



It takes a big band to take on Talking Heads’ “Stop Making Sense,” one of the most iconic concert films by one of the biggest American groups of the early 1980s. On Friday, April 14, more than a dozen local musicians will come together as This Must Be the Party, the Talking Heads tribute headlining a benefit for Stivers School for the Arts’ Seedling Foundation at The Brightside in Dayton.

“It’s fun a show to do,” said Nathan Peters, one of four lead vocalists. “It’s a ridiculous amount of fun to play those songs and we really enjoy being able to give the people an awesome time. There are four (by) David Byrne so I sing like five songs. (The group) came upon the realization very early on that to be David Byrne the whole show, you either need to be David Byrne or an athlete. None of us are athletes. You literally have to dance, jog and run around and still be able to sing. It’s a workout.”

Check out This Must Be The Party with Talking Heads’ “Burning Down the House” live in 2017:

The concept first began in 2015 when Libby Ballengee contacted Brian Hoeflich to see if he could put a band together. The first show happened in 2017 and Friday’s concert will mark the first mounting since 2019. The group tackling the music includes Hoeflich (drums), Patrick Himes (guitar), Nathan Lewis (guitar), Aaron Holm (keyboards), Chris Corn (bass), Erich Reith (percussion), Khrys Blank (backing vocals) and Sammi Garett (backing vocals). The other lead vocalists are Brian Spirk, Eric Cassidy and Matt Byanski.

“The cool thing about this project is I met a lot of people I had brushed passed in the scene but never really connected with,” Peters said. “I love the fact we can still do it and as a fundraiser. The majority of what I want to do in the future is fundraiser-based for organizations that matter in town. We’re happy to be able to help an arts school like Stivers.”



Proceeds benefit the Seedling Foundation, the nonprofit that provides funding for arts education at Stivers. Tickets are $30 for advance general admission tickets and $35 on day of show. VIP tickets are $100 and include 7 p.m. entry for cocktail hour with a DJ set from retired Stivers jazz educator George Balog. Doors open at 8 p.m. Intergalactic Space Force performs at 8:15 p.m. followed by This Must Be The Party at 9 p.m. An after-party at 11 p.m. features Freekbass Solo Grooves.

This benefit is part of a new relationship with The Brightside, whose owners, Carli and Hamilton Dixon, are parents of two Stivers students. On December 9, the venue hosted Rise Up: A Seedling Foundation Fundraiser with Freekbass, the Lov Locz Experiment and Crabswithoutlegs. For Seedling’s executive director Christie Baker, it’s a partnership that makes sense.

“Carli has been on our board for four or five years and has been a parent of a Stivers kid for longer than that,” Baker said. “She also has this great venue and she offered us The Brightside for some events. It’s such a perfect, natural fit. We wanted to do some events that are in keeping with the spirit of the arts we have through Stivers but doing some things outside of the school allows us to do events that are more community oriented. By doing that we can bring in broader, diverse audiences.”

Contact this contributing writer at 937-287-6139 or


What: This Must Be the Party: Talking Heads tribute and Seedling Foundation benefit with Intergalactic Space Force and Freekbass Solo Grooves

Where: The Brightside, 905 E. Third St., Dayton

When: Friday, April 14 at 8 p.m.

Cost: $30 advance general admission tickets, $35 day of show; VIP tickets are $100

More info: 937-410-0450 or

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