He was playing a Lumineers song on a public piano in Boston. Then a member of the group came by and joined

“He started playing and I looked at him and I was like, ‘This guy kinda looks like one of the guys from The Lumineers,'” Spencer, 24, said.

Turns out that’s exactly who it was.

In a remarkable twist of fate, Jeremiah Fraites was strolling Downtown Crossing on his day off from touring Tuesday when he surprised Spencer at the piano nearby, playing a song Fraites had co-written.

He then approached the music floating around the neighborhood and surprised an unsuspecting Spencer.

“It was so mind-blowing,” Spencer said Wednesday. “I was immediately starstruck and embarrassed that I hadn’t played the song better.”

Fraites, the co-founder of the Colorado-based rock band, posted a video of the entire interaction with Spencer on Instagram on Tuesday.

“[Nicholas Sutton Bell] and I was walking around Boston on our day off and heard someone playing ‘Ophelia’ on a street piano, Fraites wrote in a caption accompanying the clip, which has been viewed nearly half a year. million times. “At first he didn’t know I was part of the Lumineers, but he was kind enough to let me come up and play with him.”

In the video, someone off camera says to an oblivious Spencer, “that’s a good song, man,” as Fraites listens for a minute while standing behind him and giving a thumbs up.

He then walks over to the piano and begins tapping out a few keys himself as Spencer – unaware that the person who wrote the song he was playing was right next to him – continues to play.

Afterwards, Sutton Bell, who was recording the video, told Spencer, “It’s his song,” referring to Fraites. Suddenly, everything starts to click for Spencer, who becomes visibly shocked.

“You must be [expletive] [expletive] me,” Spencer says in the video, as reality sets in.

Fraites and Spencer then talk for a while before Fraites tells Spencer that her rendition of “Ophelia” was “awesome” and “perfect”.

Fraites said on Instagram that it was “great to play” with Spencer, and even invited him to come see the band perform at the XFinity Center in Mansfield on June 6.

Spencer, an AmeriCorps partner with the National Parks Service who described Fraites as “cool” and a “really nice guy,” said the moment was “the craziest thing that’s ever happened to me.”

“I never thought this could happen before, even while it was happening,” said Spencer, who has been playing the piano for about 14 years and is self-taught. “But he was totally the coolest guy it ever happened to.”

Spencer said that Fraites offered him tickets to see The Lumineers perform this Friday was a fluke, as a previous show he had tickets for was canceled at the height of the pandemic. Having the chance to see them now is a memory he will surely never forget.

“They’ve been my favorite band for the last four years or so, so now that it’s actually happening, in the way, in such a weird and awesome and just weird way that the universe sent me” is exciting, did he declare .

It’s not the first time a musical celebrity has caught a local artist playing one of his songs while visiting the city.

In October of last year, Grammy Award-winning singer and pianist John Legend watched and listened to Radha Rao perform “All of Me” to a small crowd at Faneuil Hall. He then approached her and gave her a hug and a tip.


Steve Annear can be contacted at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @steveannear.

Corina C. Butler