Musician Ben Folds On Following Your Interests & Discovering Great Things

Aug 20, 2018

Ben Folds is a renaissance man. He’s a songwriter, an accomplished pianist, a producer for other artists, an actor, a passionate photographer, and a storyteller. In 2017, he was named an artistic advisor to the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center.

From his group Ben Folds Five, to his solo shows, to his work with symphony orchestras, Folds continuously pushes artistic boundaries. His most recent album, So There, was a blend of pop songs and his Concerto for Piano and Orchestra. That album was No. 1 on both the Billboard classical and classical crossover charts.

Folds not only writes songs, but he produces, acts, and takes award winning photographs — and he says it all helps.

"I think songwriting is just really difficult. I think songwriting is something that can be no fun, really fast. And it can be formulaic really quickly," Folds notes. "And I think that with all the other things that I do, I view my songwriting a lot differently."

Folds will perform this Thursday with Cake at the BMO Harris Pavilion on the Summerfest grounds. Before the show in Milwaukee, he joined Lake Effect's Bonnie North by phone: