Ben Folds Tackles Fame in New Song “Back to Anonymous” | Under the Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
Thursday, February 22nd, 2024  

Ben Folds Tackles Fame in New Song “Back to Anonymous”

What Matters Most Due Out June 2 via New West

May 19, 2023 Photography by Alysse Gafjken
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Ben Folds is releasing a new album, What Matters Most, on June 2 via New West. Now he has shared its second single, “Back to Anonymous,” which reflects on the challenges of being famous. Listen below, followed by his upcoming tour dates.

In a press release Folds says he wrote “Back to Anonymous” during the COVID-19 pandemic, when most people’s faces were covered with masks when in public. “It got me thinking about everyday people who just do the most amazing things that we should aspire to, yet they never get applause. That’s who the song is for—those who truly deserve to be recognized and applauded,” he says.

Previously Folds shared the album’s first single, “Winslow Gardens.”

What Matters Most is Fold’s first new studio album in eight years. Folds’ last studio album was 2015’s So There, a collaboration with yMusic. His last full-on solo album was 2008’s Way to Normal. Folds co-produced What Matters Most with Joe Pisapia (K.D. Lang, Guster), recording it in East Nashville, TN.

“There’s a lifetime of craft and experience all focused into this one record. Sonically, lyrically, emotionally, I don’t think it’s an album I could have made at any other point in my career,” said Folds in a previous press release.

“I come from the vinyl era, and this perhaps more than any record I’ve made is a true album,” he added. “There’s a very specific sequence and arc to each side, all building up to this almost surreal positive finale, and that structure was really important to me…. More than anything, I wanted to make an album that was generous, that was useful. I want you to finish this record with something you didn’t have when you started.”

In between albums, Folds has also been working with orchestras and contributing songs to soundtracks.

“It can be difficult jumping back and forth from one discipline to another,” he said, “but you learn so much from moving between worlds and collaborating with so many different kinds of artists. I performed some of the songs on this record with the National Symphony Orchestra before I finished recording them for the album, and that context gave me so much insight into how I wanted to handle them in the studio.”

Ben Folds Tour Dates:

June 13 - New London, CT - Garde Arts Center ~
June 14 - Lowell, MA - Memorial Auditorium ~
June 16 - Lewiston, NY - ARTPARK Mainstage Theater ~
June 17 - Huber Heights, OH - Rose Music Center ~
June 18 - Louisville, KY - Palace Theatre ~
June 20 - Wilmington, DE - The Grand Opera House ~
June 22 - New York, NY - Beacon Theatre ~
June 23 - Greensburg, PA - Palace Theatre ~
June 24 - Indianapolis, IN - Rock the Ruins at Holiday Park ~
June 25 - Detroit, MI - Motor City Casino ~
June 27 - Nashville, TN - Ryman Auditorium ~
June 28 - St. Louis, MO - Stifel Theatre ~
June 30 - Onamia, MN - Grand Casino Mille Lacs ~
July 1 - Fargo, ND - Outdoors at Fargo Brewing ~
July 20 - Grand Rapids, MI - Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park *
July 22 - Columbus, OH - Bicentennial Stage at the Columbus Commons *
August 2 - Bonner, MT - KettleHouse Amphitheatre *
August 4 - Park City, Utah - TBA *
August 8 - Milwaukee, WI - Riverside Theater ~
August 9 - Cedar Rapids, IA - McGrath Amphitheatre ~
August 10 - Kansas City, MO - Uptown Theater ~
August 11 - Salina, KS - The Stiefel Theatre for the Performing Arts ~
August 13 - Arvada, CO – Center for Arts & Humanities ~
August 15 - Mesa, AZ - Mesa Arts Center ~
August 16 - Los Angeles, CA - The Wiltern ~
August 17 - Oakland, CA - Fox Theater ~
August 19 - Eugene, OR - Cuthbert Amphitheater ~
August 20 - Seattle, WA - Paramount Theatre ~
September 12 - Lynchburg, VA - Academy Center of the Arts #
September 13 - Bristol, TN - Paramount Bristol #
September 14 - Greenville, SC - Peace Center - Concert Hall #
September 16 - Huntsville, AL - Mars Music Hall #
September 17 - Birmingham, AL - Alys Stephens Performing Arts Center #
September 19 - Charlottesville, VA - Paramount Theatre #
September 20 - Durham, NC – Performing Arts Center #
September 21 - Washington, DC – Kennedy Center #
September 27 - Portsmouth, NH - The Music Hall Historic Theater #
September 28 - Portland, ME - State Theatre #
September 30 - Troy, NY - Troy Savings Bank Music Hall
October 1 - New Brunswick, NJ - State Theatre #
October 2 - Huntington, NY - The Paramount #
October 6 & 7 - Minneapolis, MN - Orchestra Hall *
October 10 - Conway, AR - Windgate Center for Fine and Performing Arts #
October 17 - Houston, TX - Bayou Music Center #
October 18 - Austin, TX - Paramount Theatre #
October 20 & 21 - Dallas, TX - Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center *
November 8 - Bath, United Kingdom - The Forum ~
November 9 - Brighton, United Kingdom - Brighton Dome ~
November 10 - Birmingham, United Kingdom - Symphony Hall ~
November 12 - Oxford, United Kingdom - New Theatre ~
November 13 - London, United Kingdom - Royal Albert Hall ~
November 15 - Gateshead, United Kingdom - Sage Gateshead ~
November 16 - York, United Kingdom - Grand Opera House ~
November 17 - Manchester, United Kingdom - O2 Apollo ~
November 18 - Edinburgh, United Kingdom - Usher Hall ~
November 20 - Dublin, Ireland - The Helix #
November 23 - Zurich, Switzerland - Kaufleuten #
November 25 - Berlin, Germany - Admiralspalast #
November 26 - Wiesbaden, Germany - Kurhaus #
November 27 - Utrecht, Netherlands - TrivoliVredenburg - Grote Zaal #
November 30 - Paris, France - La Cigale #
December 1 - Antwerp, Belgium - De Roma #
December 2 - Dudelange, Luxembourg - Opderschmelz #
December 4 - Essen, Germany - Lichtburg #

* Orchestra Performances
~ Full Band Performances
# Solo Performances

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