Last March, Swedish occult rockers Ghost revealed what was believed to be their new frontman, Papa Emeritus IV. Today, the band have thrown audiences for a loop by announcing the arrival of their actual new frontman, Papa Billy Joel.
“Now begins the era of the piano man,” announced Ghost mastermind Tobias Forge in an exclusive statement to Swedish publication Köttbulle. “For years, we have been plagued by weak-minded uptown girls and big shots — but no longer. Now, all will hear the true voice of Satan, from the streets of Vienna to the factories of Allentown. It is time the Devil drags you through the long night, across Scandinavian skies, down the river of dreams. Only the good die young, friends.”
When the reporter questioned whether or not the music Ghost will be making with Papa Billy Joel would fall outside of the definition of metal, and might instead be considered blue-collar dancing rock for your average beer-swillin’ dude, Forge answered, “You may be right, I may be crazy…but it’s still rock and roll to me.”
In his first public appearance on 52nd Street in New York, Papa Billy Joel broke from typical Ghost protocol by walking around smiling warmly, shaking hands with random fans, and repeatedly telling those who addressed him to “just call [him] Billy.” After this, the robe-and-miter-wearing frontman entered a dive bar, sat down at a piano with an ashtray on top, and asked if the assembled onlookers had any requests.
“Papa Billy Joel will be our most mysterious and off-putting frontman to date,” one of Ghost’s Nameless Ghouls assured The Pit. “It might appear as though Tobias has actually transformed into the character, or even that Papa Billy Joel is in one place while Tobias is in a back room eating a sandwich. But that’s just part of the rock theatricality that we’ve always courted in Ghost.”
At press time, Papa Billy Joel had pointed into the crowd around him and said, “I heard ‘Captain Jack!'” before laying into his piano.
Words by Hank Callsy