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Messages - Fongolia

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Tour Board / Re: Thoughts on AMAA/VIP/Soundcheck stuff
« on: October 02, 2017, 12:14:44 AM »
My rambley report back on the AMAA/Masterclass in Vancouver.

I loved the soundcheck but I could've skipped the AMAA. There were only 10 of us for the questions, but Ben's answers were a little long and rambly so I was a little bummed my question got skipped (plus a couple people got double questions).  More were let in for the soundcheck (maybe 30-40 total). Again my request wasn't picked, but luckily people had good requests for stuff that I was thrilled to hear so that worked out.  The extra soundcheck folk were streamed out and the VIP folks got to get their stuff signed plus a photo op with Ben.  I don't know if the photographer was trying to be stylish or what but she cropped off the top of Ben's head in my photo. I feel like she had one job and kinda blew it, so that was also a little disappointing.  When you compare the two VIP packages, I was essentially paying $170 extra for the questions, photo, and meet & greet.  I'm glad I did it but would probably go for the lower tier next time.  I think it's worth it if you've never met Ben before.  In my 30-second interaction I got him to sign a photo of the two of us taken in Chapel Hill in 2008, plus tell him I was the one behind the mash-up that he once played live with Neil Gaiman, Amanda Palmer, and Damian Kulash. The price point makes me wince, but I suppose a lower tier would lead to a less intimate affair.

Sound check snippets:
  • Rock Star
  • Belinda
  • Gracie
  • Selfless, Cold and Composed
  • All U Can Eat
  • Rocking the Suburbs
  • Jesusland
  • Fired
  • Your Dogs  (this would've been one of my plane requests and he really stumbled through it, which was a hoot)
  • Adelaide

All that said, the main show itself was probably the best I've seen solo and the package came with a front row seat!  Coincidentally, I sat right next to fellow 'burber Makiko from Japan who I first met at the BF5 reunion 9 years ago. The setlist was wide-ranging and the paper airplane requests were excellent.  This is probably the first show I've seen where he didn't play Army and it's definitely the first I didn't hear someone yell out Rock This Bitch (he did an improv song anyway about a blank piece of paper). The one-two combo of Uncle Walter followed by Bastard seemed like a not-too-subtle commentary on the US president.  The Vancouver crowd admirably filled in the Regina Spektor parts of You Don't Know Me.  Later he had to turn down a request for Dear Theodosia (on a giant paper airplane) since he said he doesn't really remember it and apparently screwed it up over the summer when he tried. He got a round of applause when he declined Bitches Ain't Shit, which he said he's put on hiatus not out of political correctness, but empathy since he recognizes it's just a bad time for a bunch of white folks to be singing that these days. We got Protection, which was a rare treat. We heard the full story behind Hiro's Song and how he came to start playing Tiny Dancer, which I knew nothing about previously.

Loved this setlist!

General Board / Nashville
« on: June 20, 2017, 12:49:38 AM »
Hey, I'll be in Nashville in about a week's time.  Anything special worth checking out from a Ben Folds fan perspective?  I know he's not at RCA Studio A anymore but I plan on taking a peek since it's nearby some other attractions I'm going to.

Tour Board / Re: Thoughts on AMAA/VIP/Soundcheck stuff
« on: June 14, 2017, 05:06:55 PM »
Prices are out for the Vancouver show:
349 CAD for AMAA/MasterClass
179 CAD for Soundcheck
40 CAD Regular
I may be crazy, but not THAT crazy

EDIT: I lied. I am that crazy. Doing it.

Which level?!

And I feel you. I am doing one of the Luckiest levels of the GULP 6 shows I bought tickets to today.

I was only supposed to buy for the 3 in Florida. Somehow I ended up with the 3 in Georgia too.
Nice, I'm just doing the 1 show in Vancouver. I went for the AMAA.  I scrolled through the meet & greet photos from 2016 (someone posted a link on Reddit): and was tempted by the intimate numbers.  Looks like only 12 individuals at the Toronto show!  Fortunately my job is decent enough that I can not feel too too guilty to do this as a one-time splurge.

I happened to be plotting a weekend trip back home in August, which would be about a $300 flight, so basically I'm doing this show in lieu of that trip, ha ha. My family understands. ;D

Tour Board / Re: Thoughts on AMAA/VIP/Soundcheck stuff
« on: June 13, 2017, 04:54:50 PM »
Prices are out for the Vancouver show:
349 CAD for AMAA/MasterClass
179 CAD for Soundcheck
40 CAD Regular
I may be crazy, but not THAT crazy

EDIT: I lied. I am that crazy. Doing it.

Tour Board / Re: Thoughts on AMAA/VIP/Soundcheck stuff
« on: June 13, 2017, 09:50:29 AM »
I've never done either of the upgrades - because I'd rather go to three shows at 50 instead of one show at 150

Unless he only comes to town every 20 years! I always have to travel and spend a few hundred bucks a show as is

Tour Board / Thoughts on AMAA/VIP/Soundcheck stuff
« on: June 12, 2017, 10:57:57 PM »
I've read through a scattering of older posts I can find that mention the VIP/MasterClass experience. Seems like hit or miss in terms of whether people thought it was worth it, though a large part of those feelings seem tied to the exorbitant cost. Scrolling through the pre-sale site, they don't even list prices and it's like "if you have to ask, it's probably out of your price range".  I've seen Ben several times now: right up at the stage, way at the back, with and with the Five, with and without symphonies. I met him once with a bunch of other Burbanites in that Chapel Hill pizza shop at the 2008 BF5 reunion where I got a photo, signed CD, and mumbled some nonsense at him. I feel like I've read enough articles, interviews, etc. that I've heard most of the stories and answers before to common AMA questions (and don't have much original to ask myself). The CID Entertainment aspect is somewhat off-putting, like there's no hiding that it's a straight-up business transaction.  Yet, he's coming to Vancouver for the first time since 2001 and I can virtually guarantee I'll cave and do this since I'd rather regret doing it than regret not.

Anyway, have any of you gone? Were you awed? Underwhelmed? Somewhere in between?  I doubt it'll sway me either way, but I'm genuinely curious since there's so little info out there about these.

From the setlist I took (Robert's!):

Ben Folds Five
Opener: Nataly Dawn (of Pomplamoose)
Roseland Theater
Portland, OR

1.  Michael Praytor, Five Years Later
2.  Jackson Cannery
3.  Hold That Thought
4.  Selfless, Cold and Composed
5.  Erase Me
6.  Landed
7.  Sky High
8.  Missing the War
9.  Battle of Who Could Care Less
10.  Draw a Crowd
11.  Thank You for Breaking My Heart
12.  Brick
13.  Philosophy (from printed setlist)  Theme from Dr. Pyser
14.  Kate
15.  Do It Anyway
16.  Alice Childress
17.  Steven's Last Night in Town
18.  Song for the Dumped
19.  Army

Magic (from printed setlist)
One Angry Dwarf and 200 Solemn Faces

**not sure at what point, but they played a Folsom Prison Blues-style improv song and separately a Rock This Bitch for Portland jam

From the setlist I took:

I didn't take any notes, so I can't verify how closely they followed this and it's been so long I don't remember any details either.

Ben Folds & yMusic
Opener: Mindie Lind
Moore Theater
Seattle, WA

1. Beautiful Mechanical (yMusic)
2. So There
3. Long Way to Go
4. Not a Fan
5. Effington
6. I'm Not the Man
7. Phone in a Pool
8. Mess
9. Music in Circles (yMusic)
10. Yes Man
11. Erase Me
12. Jesusland
13. Capable of Anything
14. Steven's Last Night in Town
15. You Don't Know Me

Not the Same

Barnes & Noble just shipped mine TODAY.  Yay for pre-orders.  :-\

News / Jamie Cullum covers Brick as part of new cover song project
« on: July 31, 2015, 10:31:41 PM »
One of my other favourite piano-pounding musicians Jamie Cullum just started "The Song Society" on his youtube channel, a project wherein he and his bandmates learn and perform some of their favourite songs within a 1 hour time limit.  The first entry is Brick, which apparently inspired him as an aspiring piano player and songwriter as a teen:

As a cover, I find it a little too faithful, though I always love to hear Jamie's voice on covers regardless.  More fun I think is his jamming on Mark Ronson's Uptown Funk in the second episode:


News / Re: Ben Folds on ‘Live from Daryl’s House’
« on: May 25, 2015, 10:27:23 AM »
Oh my god this worked so.hard. - in the good way - the great one, really! Sorry to clog up the post, last one - but a million points to you for some fantastic referral skills there. Ben is SO GOOD. And so is all of the band! Magic. Thank you!

Glad it worked! I'm a librarian by profession and connecting people to information is what we do! (It's a little compulsive.)

News / Re: Ben Folds on ‘Live from Daryl’s House’
« on: May 24, 2015, 10:39:53 PM »
I saw this was going on and once again damned my bad luck to live in the UK...

Apparently they don't want Canadians to watch it either, but I used a great VPN service to watch the whole show. You can download it as an app or simply as a Chrome plug-in.  Worked better than a couple others I'd tried before.  The free service is only good for 500MB a month, but that's good enough to watch this show!

News / Re: Ben Folds on ‘Live from Daryl’s House’
« on: May 11, 2015, 06:34:17 PM »
I saw an artist named Meaghan Smith a few years ago play an Omnichord live and spent the next couple months tracking one down a used one on eBay.  After messing around with it for quite a while, I came to recognize the distinct sounds it makes and was surprised not only to hear it in Annie Waits but also The Bens version of Wicked Little Town (most noticeable right at the beginning, but the Omnichord chords continue throughout the whole song).

It's certainly novel to hear a full band backing Ben's songs. I enjoyed hearing him sing/play on Daryl's songs too.  One of my favourites from the show archives is when Sharon Jones stopped by.

Tour Board / Re: Bonnaroo 2014
« on: June 17, 2014, 10:52:37 AM »
You can listen to Sir Elton John and Ben Folds' "Grey Seal" on WMWV Radio's SoundCloud. Enjoy!

Hooray, thanks Makiko!

Tour Board / Re: Bonnaroo 2014
« on: June 16, 2014, 07:09:19 PM »
I found mp3s of the Super Jam taken from the webcast: here.  Ben took lead on Joe c*cker's Space Captain  though I'm not sure if he played on any other tracks.

He also joined Elton John for Grey Seal (which he played at the Elton John benefit a few years ago), though I've yet to see audio from that pop up yet.  Let me know if anyone finds it!

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