BenFolds Five discography at
My fourth time seeing Ben Folds Five over the past year, and they just keep gettingbetter. Less than a year ago, I saw them at the small venue, Urban Art Bar (read that review), and now this trio from Chapel Hill, NC (home of myalma mater, University of North Carolina) is playing tosold out crowds at Numbers. It's amazing how a little national TV exposure will promote aband, BFF having been on Saturday Night Live, Letterman, Leno, and Keenen this year. I wasvery happy to see the crowd into the set and singing along with more than just thesingles, specifically during Fair with the crowd providing a harmonic background duringthe chorus. With great songs like the current single, Brick and last year's Battle of WhoCould Care Less, Ben Folds played his little heart out on the grand piano. Not to beoutdone, Robert Sledge, the very accomplished bass player, stepped out front for a divadance party with a Donna Summer song and then a transition to Night Ranger's SisterChristian. Ben even sang a little song about Robert and him showing his ass. Otherhighlights included long intros to Song for the Dumped and Underground and a cover of theFlaming Lips She Don't Use Jelly. From the newest live compilation, Naked Baby Photos,they played Eddie Walker, a great song that was omitted from either studio album. Otherfavorites of mine were Philosophy, Jackson Cannery, and Kate. Closing with 200 SolemnFaces and One Angry Dwarf, and Ben climbing on a speaker to hurl his stool at the pianofor the perfect finish, the crowd was left wanting more, but the midnight curfew atNumbers wouldn't allow it.
Opening act, Robbie Fulks provided an alternative country flair with cute songs likeShe Took Too Many Pills and Died and NC is the Cigarette State. They were so good that Ipicked up their CD and chatted a bit with Robbie after the show. Having grown up nearDurham NC, (obvious in his song influences) he currently lives in Chicago. He was a veryfriendly fellow and obviously serious musician who is happy to be on such a high exposuretour. He commented on how he liked Houston better than Dallas, since we didn't throw fullbeer cans at his head during his set.
On That Note, I'm outta here......