you are now at my discount (a.k.a. not as good as the others) ben folds five page. this picture of darren is at the top because i don't really have a place to put an individual picture of darren, so i just decided to put one here.
ben folds five is a trio from chapel hill, nc that likes telling people they formed in a gay disco bar where ben was the dj and robert and darren were kareoke stars. in case you've been living under a rock, ben plays drums, robert plays piano, and darren plays one mean harmonica. just kidding. (if you truly don't know what they play and must find out here, then their pictures are labeled and you should be able to figure it out.)
soon, caroline records "discovered" and signed them after listening to a sampler of their music which had jackson cannery and eddie walker on it. the night on which this happened, ben had been playing a gig on an electric piano type keyboard because the space they were playing wasn't big enough for the piano. caroline records people said never to do this again. i read that part in rolling stone... i doubt it happened. but anyway, there was never a demo tape, and ben has been quoted as to advising that bands shouldn't waste their money on recording demo tapes when they could record things to sell at their shows and spread their music to lots of people.after their "discovery," robert and ben and darren proceeded to make a very keen self titled first album, greatly pleasing many people. it gained lots of critical acclaim, because as you hopefully know it deserved it. then they toured and did interviews and the like to promote their album. it sold fairly well, and is still selling today because it is so good.
then something happened between robert and ben and darren and caroline, and they signed their band over to sony records, at which they recorded their second album, whatever and ever amen. they recorded this album in ben's house, and used the money for recording in a studio to basically make the house into one. as recognized in the liner notes, the neighbors were kind and tolerant and didn't call the police.
after that came the usual touring and interviewing to promote the album, and also many appearances on television. it, like the self titled first album, was also very very good, and although less songs inclined me to jump off my bed and begin to dance (no one was looking...), the songs were very thoughtful and pretty. this album also got much critical acclaim, though not as much as the last one. the album sold well with the success of singles on alternative radio, until the release of a single we all have some reaction to: brick. after brick was released on the radio, it inspired many many more people to get into the music of ben folds five. then their concerts started selling even more tickets, lots to teenage/pre-teenage girls who knew only the word brick. however, lots of these new people buying tickets also appreciated the whole album, and the first album also. many new bff fans were made.
while brick mania (resulting in the blatant over-exposure of an otherwise very nice song) occurred, the three fivers finished their contract with caroline records by releasing naked baby photos, a good compilation of b-sides and live songs, including the three that were cut off the first album but were supposed to be on it (emaline, tom and mary, and eddie walker). it sold pretty nicely, and is also still selling. the critics liked this one, but weren't very enthusiastic (considering there's apparently some unspoken rule about releasing a live/b-side album before your band is so many years old...).
touring resumed after a short break in the spring, and kept up for awhile. they finished their tour, and have recorded and released their third specially written album, "the unauthorized biography of reinhold messner." they are currently touring to support the release and appearing on various tv shows to promote it also.
on this page are bass tabs, a couple links, and piano music (gasp). but don't get excited about the piano music... well, you can, if you want to, since there's more than seven songs there currently. the bass tabs i hope are decent, they seem to be working fine for me. but enough of reading my babbling, use the wonderful pull down menu (which i am very proud of) to get where you want to go.
oh yeah, one more thing: if ANYONE has a bootleg or pictures of bff's june 6, 1998 performance at the saratoga performing arts center, PLEASE mail me.
and, i have an interview... i haven't seen this one, so i believe it to be exclusive to this page, though i'm probably wrong.
the fantastic bff pull down menu