Popularity for South Bend, Indiana's mayor Pete Buttigieg is soaring after his recent announcement of running as a Democratic candidate for the 2020 presidential election.
The openly gay Democrat's campaign raised $7 million so far, and he tied for the fifth position nationally with Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) in a recent poll.
Beyond his marriage to husband Chasten Buttigieg last June, not much else was known about the presidential nominee who aims to challenge discriminatory acts against the LGBTQ community.
Turns out, the 37-year-old is a very talented musician. And there is proof.
In 2015, the South Bend mayor expressed interest in joining musician Ben Folds on stage during a concert appearance.
The artist prematurely underestimated Buttigieg's musical capability and asked the sound technician to lower the volume on the piano.
Folds told Esquire his instincts were off.
Here is the YouTube clip of a pre-2020 presidential candidate, mayor Pete Buttigieg, tickling the ivories in the Ben Folds concert in South Bend from 2015.
Mayor Pete plays with Ben Folds & the South Bend Symphony Orchestra for SB150 5-23-15 www.youtube.com
"You know, the mayor sitting in sounds like a possible train wreck," Folds predicted. But after hearing the mayor playing the Ben Folds Five song "Steven's Last Night in Town," Folds changed his tune.
"He and I went over the music quickly and he was obviously a very good pianist—no worries there."
"It was a very difficult song he pulled off. I'm serious. He's a fine player."
The Washington Post confirmed his surging popularity with the viral video.
"Pete Buttigieg is winning the Internet—for what that's worth."
Twitter is impressed with the mayor's mad skills.
My friend just sent me a video of @PeteButtigieg playing piano for @BenFolds and it’s... even better than I could have imagined?— Kristina Koppeser 😑 (@Kristina Koppeser 😑)1554170249.0
@KristinaLuca @PeteButtigieg @BenFolds Well, I guess I’m a lock now.— (((Luke Mosher))) (@(((Luke Mosher))))1554174674.0
Just when we thought we couldn't be more impressed.
@KristinaLuca @PeteButtigieg @BenFolds He speaks multiple languages, his twitter account rocks, he’s a badass mayor... Who is this warlock?— pete wrigley (@pete wrigley)1554210771.0
@KristinaLuca @PeteButtigieg @BenFolds This is crazy! I thought it was a joke until I watched your video. I had th… https://t.co/rHAiTqon3e— Burn It All Down! (@Burn It All Down!)1554247129.0
At the time of the concert Folds noticed a uniqueness about the young mayor:
"The thing that struck me about the audience was that Pete's presence didn't elicit the predictable 'political' feel that comes over an audience when they're confronted with a politician."
"Having a politician on is guaranteed to feel a little stiff and usually somewhat divisive at a concert."
"But this was more like having world's most beloved entertainer onstage. Lots of 'PEEEETE!!!' across all types, young and old. And he didn't take the moment to grab the mic and talk or linger on stage. Total class."
The latest viral video of his performance joins his other social media highlights.
In a Facebook post, he described the start of his already chaotic day taking an unexpected turn. The mayor spontaneously married a couple in his constituency minutes before the bride-to-be delivered the couple's baby via a C-section.
"She had the paperwork and everything in a folder along with her hospital papers, and they wanted to see if I could do the honors," he recounted.
"Obviously there's only one answer to that question."
@meatloafcentral @KristinaLuca @PeteButtigieg @BenFolds AND he married a couple at 8:15 am in the morning on Monday… https://t.co/QjHEgY4pK2— Lynn Crowell (@Lynn Crowell)1554307446.0
Buttigieg is not only adept at playing the piano, he could be his own one-man band.
@KristinaLuca @PeteButtigieg @BenFolds This is pretty killer too. https://t.co/molvnvBxX0— Kevin J. Prather (@Kevin J. Prather)1554242884.0
With momentum like this building, he could be unstoppable on the road to 2020.
@KristinaLuca @PeteButtigieg @BenFolds Mayor Pete is so accomplished at everything he does...#President Pete— Jennifer (@Jennifer)1554226840.0
@KristinaLuca @PeteButtigieg @BenFolds Dammit! I'm really trying to stay open-minded about the Dem field, but this… https://t.co/QwH1fyzas2— orgfarmer (@orgfarmer)1554213029.0
If you didn't know who Pete Buttigieg was, he is quickly becoming a house hold name.
That was a good day https://t.co/adwbuvpshj— Pete Buttigieg (@Pete Buttigieg)1554201048.0
We look forward to more good days with him. Lots.