Whatever and Ever Amen [Bonus Tracks]

Whatever and Ever Amen [Bonus Tracks]

by Ben Folds Five


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Music in the mid-2000s seems more diverse and stratified. But in the general guitar-bass-drum format of '90s alternative rock, the Ben Folds Five piano-and-rhythm show really was an anomaly. This is a point of pride for Folds in his notes for the expanded, newly remastered edition of Whatever and Ever Amen, his band's 1997 commercial breakthrough. "We...had moved my baby grand all by ourselves for three years into every punk rock club in America that didn't want us there," he writes. "Singing Broadway harmonies and playing pretty chords to upset the indie kids." "Brick" was the unlikeliest of hit singles, a sad piano story nevertheless propelled by its poignant chorus and Folds' delivery as the slacker forced by circumstance to grow up fast. And a Todd Rundgren/Joe Jackson nod like "Selfless, Cold and Composed" wasn't going to be mistaken for some of the louder songs of the era. But Whatever still had loads of alt-rock swagger, mostly in Folds' smart, smug lyrics. In that category, "Battle of Who Could Care Less" was a masterpiece. "You think Rockford Files is cool/But there are some things that you would change," he sings over a track mixing '70s pop schlock with grimy '90s rhythm. "So think about your masterpiece/Watch The Rockford Files/Call to see if Paul can score some weed." The 2005 Whatever and Ever Amen is remastered, and features testimonials from bassist Robert Sledge and drummer Darren Jesse in addition to Folds' notes. It includes seven B-sides and non-LP tracks, the highlights being a Japanese-language version of "Song for the Dumped" ("You bitch" evidently doesn't translate), "For All the Pretty People," and a cover of the Flaming Lips' classic "She Don't Use Jelly," and features an enjoyable, previously unreleased version of "Video Killed the Radio Star." And now we meet in an abandoned studio; we hear the playback and it seems so long ago.

Product Details

Release Date: 03/22/2005
Label: Sony
UPC: 0696998606227
catalogNumber: 86062

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Ben Folds Five   Primary Artist
John Catchings   Strings
Todd Collins   Percussion
David Davidson   Strings
Shaun McWilliams   Percussion
John Mark Painter   Percussion,Horn,Background Vocals,Double Bass
Kristin Wilkinson   Strings
Ben Folds   Piano,Vocals,Group Member
Fleming McWilliams   Background Vocals
Robert Sledge   Bass,Vocals,Group Member
Darren Jessee   Drums,Vocals,Group Member
David Angel   Strings

Technical Credits

Nick DiDia   Engineer
Geoffrey Downes   Composer
Ronald Jones   Composer
Brendan O'Brien   Producer
John Mark Painter   Producer,Engineer,String Arrangements
Caleb Southern   Producer,Engineer,Audio Production
Ben Folds   Composer,Producer,Engineer,Audio Production
Michael Ivins   Composer
Wayne Coyne   Composer
Robert Sledge   Composer
Leigh Smiler   Cover Design
Steven Drozd   Composer
Darren Jessee   Composer
T. Horn   Composer
Ben Folds Five   Producer
Anna Goodman   Composer

Customer Reviews

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Whatever and Ever Amen 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 9 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
It was a wonderful thing to finally hear good driving piano-based rock again, and 'Whatever and Ever Amen' ranks up there with early Todd Rundgren (the 'Runt' albums), Elton John (particularly 'Tumbleweed Connection' and 'Madman Across the Water') and Billy Joel (from before 'the Stranger'). Of course, between those classic albums of the early 1970's and Ben Folds' of 1997, lots of musical changes took place, including punk, wave and alternative. BFF does a fine job of assimilating those forms while still giving the young piano lesson student of today something to aspire to while studying their Hanon exercises! (In my day all there really was were Billy Joel and Elton John, and if you wanted to be a sideman, Roy Bittan of the E Street Band, but believe me, that's plenty enough to aspire to).
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is by far, one of the best, if not THE best CD I own. Definetly worth the $13.99 I paid for it. I got into BFF after hearing them mentioned on the song ''Monkey'' by Counting Crows (My other favorite band). I bought it because I had a few bucks and I figured, ''What the hell?''. A week later it was still in my CD player and I was playing it at least 5 times a day all the way through. All of these songs have meaning to me, and it's one of the few CDs I own that I can listen to all the way through without skipping a track. I have never been so deeply moved by any group of songs as I have by the ones Ben writes. It doesn't matter what it is, if he wrote it, I listen, because I know it will make me feel something. You will experience every emotion when listening to Whatever and Ever Amen: happiness, sadness, desperation, loss, and everything in betwee. Anyway, just go BUY IT!!! It's bloody brilliant (As my title suggests)
Guest More than 1 year ago
Brick is the best song I have heard in a long time. It took me someplace far away....(sigh)
Guest More than 1 year ago
Ben Folds does it again with Whatever and Ever Amen. He has such a grasp on emotion and its application to music. His ability to allow the listener to feel his emotion is absolutely phenomenal. Incredible.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Whatever and Ever Amen is a unique composite of music that should never leave your cd player. The different ways Ben Folds can manipulate the piano to create opposite moods in his music are amazing. This album incorporates everything one could want on one cd. Through funny songs such as ''Angry Dwarf and Two Hundred Solemn Faces'', ''Song for the Dumped'', and ''Kate'', Ben Folds has you singing along with the lyrics with a grin on your face. In slower, sad songs, such as ''Cigarette'' and ¿Missing the War¿, he has you spellbound by his lyrics while showing off his incredible piano playing skills. The music feels like it is playing the sounds of your heart. In all, this is a wonderful, well-rounded album that everyone should own.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Ben is simply fabulous! He has by far surpassed his first album by displaying remarkable new talent. This compilation of great work provides a perfect blend of uniquely styled songs. His vocal talent is outstanding in every style he uses. Enjoyable lyrics combine with excellent piano accompaniment to provide you with an original album that is nearly impossible not to love. Because of the vast variety of styles and emotions Ben displays you will want to keep listening for hours. If your in the mood for something different, and entertaining I urge you go out and buy "Whatever and Ever Amen" It's definitely worth it!
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