Published Mar 18, 2009Alt-popster Ben Folds has announced he's hitting us up with a new full-length and, believe it or not, he's ditching the piano. Come April 28, the songwriter will go a cappella for his forthcoming album, Ben Folds Presents: University A Cappella!, which will feature a collection of U.S. a cappella groups covering a selection of old Folds songs. And as he ensure us in the press release: "This is not a novelty."
Folds goes on to say, "I consider this my new record... I'm incredibly proud of this," adding that he, his wife and engineer Joe Costa recorded all the tracks live in the groups' "natural habitat." Besides having troupes such as the University of Rochester Midnight Ramblers doing "Army" and the Ohio University Leading Tones taking on the Ben Folds Five classic "Brick," Folds himself gives a pair of tracks the vocals-only treatment, singing an a cappella redo of Way to Normal's "Effington" and one of the late-period Ben Folds Five track, "Boxing."
"If this were Ben World, this would be my greatest hits album," Folds says. "I'd rather this be my greatest hits record than someone collecting my masters and slapping on a photo of me leaning against a piano. This is a better way. I'm a songwriter, and these are my songs." For more of Folds-penned words on the album, you can check out this detailed MySpace blog post.
Some of the a cappella groups will accompany Folds on his upcoming tour, but the details have yet to be announced. However, we do have a tracklisting for the Epic-released University A Cappella!, which is:
1. "Not The Same" - The Spartones from Greensboro, NC
2. "Jesusland" - The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's Loreleis
3. "Brick" - The Ohio University Leading Tones
4. "You Don't Know Me" - The University Of Georgia's With Someone Else's Money
5. "Still Fighting It" - Washington University in St. Louis's Mosaic Whispers
6. "Boxing" - Ben Folds
7. "Selfless, Cold, and Compose" - The Sacramento State Jazz Singers
8. "Magic" - The University of Chicago's Voices In Your Head
9. "Landed" - The University of Colorado Buffoons
10. "Time" - The Princeton Nassoons
11. "Effington" - Ben Folds
12. "Evaporated" - The Newtones from Newton, MA
13. "Fred Jones Part 2" - The West Chester University of Pennsylvania Gracenotes
14. "Army" - The University of Rochester Midnight Ramblers
15. "Fair" - University of Wisconsin - Eau Claire's Fifth Element
16. "The Luckiest" - The Washington University in St. Louis Amateurs