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Ben Folds, KXCI Presents!

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BEN FOLDS
Ben Folds

Ben Folds is widely regarded as one of the major music influencers of our generation. He’s spent over a decade sharing the stage with some of the world’s greatest symphony orchestras – from Sydney, Australia to the Kennedy Center, performing his pop hits and his critically acclaimed concerto for Piano and Orchestra. For five seasons he was a judge on the popular NBC series“The Sing Off,” which catapulted the art of a cappella into the national spotlight, and helped launch the careers of numerous a cappella groups. Throughout his career, Folds has created an enormous body of genre-bending musical art that includes pop albums as the front man for Ben Folds Five, multiple solo rock albums, as well as unique collaborative records with artists from Sara Bareilles and Regina Spektor, to Weird Al and William Shatner. His most recent album is a blend of pop and classical original works, in part recorded with the revered classical sextet yMusic that soared to #1 on both the Billboard classical and classical crossover charts.Beginning this Fall, Folds will be back to pound pianos again with cross country solo touring reminiscent of his earliest solo tours, where he defied skeptics by delivering a high energy rock performance using the intimacy of just a piano. In addition to his self-described love of performing and making music “for humans,” Folds is also an avid photographer, and is a member of the distinguished Sony Artisans of Imagery. Folds is also an advocate for music education and music therapy as a member of Artist Committee of the Americans For The Arts, and he serves as a member of the Board of Directors of the Nashville Symphony.

TALL HEIGHTS
Tall Heights

Getting there is half the fun, as the old saying goes, but the journey is really the whole point for Boston progressive duo Tall Heights. And singer/guitarist Tim Harrington and singer/cellist Paul Wright have had one hell of a journey, starting from playing simple acoustics on the streets of Boston to reaching Sony Music Masterworks, for which they have released their biggest, brightest, and riskiest work thus far.Neptune is the band’s latest step in the ongoing evolution of their sound and style.

Neptune is backed with pristine vocal harmonies and splattered with surprises: there’s subtly chugging electric guitar and a spare descending bass line on “Iron in the Fire,” ethereal synthesizers and a spacious drum part on “Spirit Cold,” a brittle splash of percussion to open “Backwards and Forwards” and feedback created by two cellphones on “Cross My Mind.” The album is clearly the product of a long journey, but whether it’s Tall Height’s final destination remains unclear. “I can hear the evolution happening,” Harrington says. “I feel like we’re walking across a bridge from one place to another, and maybe I’ll always feel that way, but I’m really happy with how we’re moving.”

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