Last night, I saw my first Ben Folds show. However, this was not the first time I've seen Mr. Folds in person. One summer, I was walking down some street in Newport, RI after having stuffed my face with an $18, albeit delicious, lobster roll* and literally bumped into him. I was too star struck to make the best of it. I'm still made fun of it to this day. Along with many other, unrelated things.
Right, so, in ninth grade, I used to stay up late listening to 95X making recordings from the radio of cool songs that I thought everyone else should know (not a lot has changed). There were three that they only played past midnight for a long time. I have no idea why. One was "Santeria". One was 'This Lonely Place' (Goldfinger) and the other was "The Battle Of Who Could Care Less". Dang, I loved that song. Wore that tape out! I bought Whatever and Ever Amen and can sing the whole thing start to finish including all of the instrumental parts. I'm that awesome. I have most of his other stuff too, but get kind of lost toward the recent years (I'd forgotten so many songs last night, but there they are on iTunes ready for new rotation). He's this odd hybrid of Burt Bacharach and Elton John except he doesn't suck.
I went with Lacey. It's her fifth show. I think. But, there was a guy, Ben said, who'd made it to 60 shows, so he asked him what song he'd like to hear. I said/shouted to Lacey, "Steven's Last Night In Town"! And guess what? That's what the dude said too! Ben sat at the piano and promised he'd try, but would probably fuck it up. And he did. But it was good. The last bit of the song features a frenzied drum bit, which Ben played, leaping up to the drum kit and really going to town.
I know there are a lot of naysayers (please don't judge him by the terrible ubiquitousness of "Brick"), but it was a pretty rad show. There's something great about standing with your fellow dorks screaming lyrics in harmony. And there's something about talented musicians. Wathing live music really restores my faith in true creativity and superhuman talent. However mainstream he is now, I think part of my interest in current, non top 40 music (prior to this I listened to parent mandated classical, Beatles and KOMA, the local oldies station) is due to him and late night airings of "The Battle Of Who Could Care Less".
Take a listen (these are all I could find):
You Don't Know Me
Don't Change Your Plans For Me
Steven's Last Night In Town
Zak and Sara
Song For The Dumped
Still Fighting It
*I miss you, seafood. I really, really do.