Ben Folds Launches Cross-Country Concert, Book Tour for New Memoir

Ben Folds
– Ben Folds
A Dream About Lightning Bugs

Singer/songwriter/musician Ben Folds is set to hit the road later this month in a joint concert/book tour to mark his memoir, “A Dream About Lightning Bugs,” which will be published July 30 by Ballantine Books in hardcover and eBook. Each date will include a reading/signing at a local bookstore and a corresponding performance at am area club/theater.

Folds’ accomplishments include a composing a live song with the National Symphony Orchestra as well as collaborations with the likes of Sara Bareilles, Regina Spektor and William Shatner. He was a judge for five seasons for NBC’s a cappella show, “The Sing-Off,” was named the first-ever artistic adviser for the National Symphony Orchestra at Kennedy Center and has been an outspoken advocate for arts education and music therapy.
Folds’ first book looks back at his life in a chronicle of his artistic coming-of-age, infused with the wry observations of a natural storyteller, opening up about finding his voice as a musician, becoming a rock anti-hero, and hauling a baby grand piano on and off stage for every performance.
The North Carolina native writes that as an infant his cradle was a cardboard box, while his family’s mode of transportation was a door-less convertible jeep, where a four-month-old Ben would sit in catapult position. He discovered his love of the piano in second grade, and from there his journey to achieving his goals. 
Along the way there are great lessons about supportive music teachers pushing him, dropping out of college to start a real band along with reminiscences about a botched SNL performance where he couldn’t even enjoy hanging out with Samuel L. Jackson at the after party. He also tells about forming Ben Folds Five with two of his friends, paying his dues (his polka career never quite took off), while never giving up on his dream. 
Bareilles calls the book by her pal and collaborator, “intelligent, curious, unapologetically punk, and funny as hell. This intimate look at his life from his own unique perspective is a rare and unforgettable gift that does what Ben Folds always has done for me as an artist and a friend: encourages me to be more myself, with a lot of swear words.”
Added comedian Bob Saget, “Besides being super talented, and an incredibly poignant and multifaceted musician, Ben Folds is a fantastic author. I couldn’t put this book down–and not just because I taped it to my hand. Ben takes us into his mind and into his process from the very beginnings of his childhood to where he is today-one of the greatest musicians and writers that has ever graced the art.”
Folds’ concert/book tour begins July 31 in New York City at the Strand and Cooper Union.  He’ll visit Pittsburgh, Winston-Salem, NC, Nashville, Ann Arbor and Kansas City, MO, in August, then will hit San Francisco, Los Angeles (Book Soup and the Regency Theater on 9/16) and Dallas in September, with a scheduled appearance in October in Washington, DC. 
Folds will be busy through the end of the year, hosting a podcast series of interviews with the 2020 presidential candidates focusing on their positions regarding arts funding for our public schools and communities. He will be attending both political party conventions in 2020 to present a policy paper on the arts (he was the only artist to speak and perform at both conventions in 2016). 
Folds also sparked an international grassroots campaign that saved the historic, iconic Studio A in Nashville from demolition and is an accomplished photographer whose work has been featured by National Geographic, in gallery showcases in Europe and Australia, and the focus of a documentary by the Kennedy Center. He is the co-creator with Fred Rogers Productions of a new film/TV series currently in development that teaches kids about the building blocks of music.
Recent box office submission to Pollstar include a Sept. 28, 2018 solo appearance at Lied Center in Lincoln, Neb., where he sold 1,856 tickets for a gross of $38,358 after touring with Cake, which grossed $249,542 on 5,676 tickets sold at Farm Bureau Insurance Lawn at White River State Park in Indianapolis, Ind., Aug. 25, 2018, promoted by Live Nation.
31 – New York, NY – The Strand @ The Cooper Union
5 – Pittsburgh, PA – White Whale Bookstore @ First Unitarian Church
7 – Winston-Salem, NC – Bookmarks @ R. J. Reynolds Auditorium
9 – Nashville, TN – Parnassus Books @ TBC
12 – Ann Arbor, MI – Literati Bookstore @ The Blind Pig
16 – Kansas City, MO – Rainy Day Books @ Unity Temple
12 – San Francisco, CA – San Francisco Jewish Community Center
16 – Los Angeles, CA – Book Soup @ Regent Theater DTLA
21 – Dallas, TX – Dallas Museum of Art
1 – Washington, DC – Politics & Prose @ Kennedy Center