Telekinesis | Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
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Michael Benjamin Lerner of Telekinesis


Immaculate Musical Conception

Sep 09, 2009 Telekinesis Photography by Wendy Lynch Redfern Bookmark and Share

One might say that Telekinesis’ Michael Benjamin Lerner was born to play music. Growing up the son of a classic rock radio disc jockey with a Beatles obsession, Lerner’s house was filled with music from the time he was an infant. As Lerner tells it, he was singing “Drive My Car” when he was still in diapers. But the Seattle native’s own musical pathway may have been set even before that.

“When my mom was pregnant with me, my parents went to see Stevie Wonder,” says Lerner. “He walked over to my mother when they went backstage after the show, and obviously he can’t see, but he put his hand on her stomach and said, ‘I bless this child.’ That’s what my family thinks is the reason I got the bug with music.”

After playing drums in local bands through his mid- to late-teen years (even making two albums with Seattle indie-poppers Yesan Damen), Lerner made a post high-school pilgrimage to England to study at the famous Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts. There, Lerner took up guitar, piano, and bass, honing his songwriting and recording skills in late-night studio sessions, which eventually became the impetus for Telekinesis.

“No band wants to record at two in the morning on a Saturday night, so I kind of had to become the band, as it were, to learn recording and to learn what I was being taught in the school,” says Lerner. “That was where writing the songs and playing all the instruments started to really happen. And when I got home from England in 2006, I started to write a lot more and make songs on my own. That’s when the Telekinesis record started.”

Though it is a four-piece ensemble live, on record Telekinesis is Lerner’s sole creation, with all the instruments, save a few bass parts, being played by Lerner himself. Produced, recorded, and mixed by Death Cab for Cutie’s Chris Walla, the album, Telekinesis!, betrays its author’s lifelong love of pop tunefulness, with a distinct DIY feel and subtle ‘70s-rock sensibility, made more immediate by Lerner and Walla’s one-song-at-a-time recording process.

“We would go through a song, get all the tracking done in the first part of the day, and then Chris would work on the mix, and when we had a mix we were all really happy about…we would call it good and start completely new for the next song,” says Lerner. “That was kind of the idea behind the record, to not look back and just go forward on each thing and really commit to stuff as it was happening.”

Despite growing up in the shadow of rock and roll and earning high praise from both independent and major music business elite (Lerner was actually offered a deal by Columbia Records before signing with seminal indie Merge), Lerner seems to be keeping himself grounded.

“I never thought this would happen,” he says. “You do what you do and you write songs and you play drums, and the ultimate goal, at least for me, was to put a record out. And to be able to now do that is really a dream come true…. I pinch myself every day that it’s happening.”


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Ms Andy Gish
September 10th 2009

This album is AMAZING! 

Looks like all those years of cultivating music has paid off with this catchy well written album that I never get sick of listening too.

from my Monday’s twitter:  “had the perfect ending to the weekend driving through the Georgia countryside, sunroof and windows down, singing loudly to Telekinesis.”

grand father
December 6th 2009

I had no ida that this guy would do anything grate in musick,but he did and i’m sertenly a verry proud famely member,good luck old boy .didi

Dehydration symptoms
December 14th 2009

Looks like all those years of cultivating music has paid off with this catchy well written album that I never get sick of listening too.

Album indir
December 19th 2009

i really don’t understand this guys. but i like their music. i think music doesn’t need to be understood. if not it doesn’t have any logic.. i guess

this guys rock! i love them. and i have all their songs!

müzik dinle
January 2nd 2010

Thanks admin, very good post.

What a terrific album! i loved it!
Nobody might sick of this!

Mark Ewans
March 2nd 2010

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March 25th 2010

Thanks for helpful information you catch up us with your instructional explanation.
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May 4th 2010

Thanks For Sharing

September 9th 2010

Really interesting read. Thanks for sharing this.
Thanks a lot for this article…

October 24th 2010

really are a kohen as you claim, you must be familiar with the idea that a kohen is only permitted to bless Jews with love. If you were up front with real kohanim, I would personally leave the room. But who knows what evil you have brought upon Israel by blessing with

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November 26th 2010


January 7th 2011

Just pinch yourself to make you sane..

January 10th 2011

So here’s these songs by Telekinesis!. It’s one fellow, a guy called Michael Lerner, and his is pretty much my favorite record right now, even though it’s not a record yet. He plays and writes and records everything. I think I’ll be recording with him in September, on the 8 track, all ’70s style. That’s the idea anyway.
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March 21st 2011


Thanks for sharing information .

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