Ben Gibbard. I’m trying to stray away a bit from musical artists, at least those, that I pick for my good things. Because, with me, it could easily be 999 different music artists and I kind of have my outlet for that doing the FB’s musical tourneys. But every so often there’s a musical artist that stands out as a person beyond their music. Ben Gibbard is one such person like that for me. There’s several reasons I like him. Check it below.
Reason One: Death Cab for Cutie. Ben’s main band. 2003’s “Transatlanticism,” was their big breakout album that garnered them a wide audience with broader appeal. I think the first Death Cab song I heard was the super radio-friendly poppy song, “The Sound of Settling.” Bah-Bah-Bah-Baaaaah, This is the sound of settling, bah-bah!!! Transatlanticism was more standard instrumentation with subtle songs, never over the top, very accessible. When I locked into Death Cab as a band that I could connect to was with 2005’s “Plans.” That album will always, stand for me, as the Death Cab sound and the uniqueness of the songwriter and singer that is Ben Gibbard.
I wish we could open our eyes,
To see in all directions at the same time.
Oh, what a beautiful view,
If you were never aware of what was around you.
Sorrow drips into your heart just like a pin hole,Marching Bands of Manhattan, Plans, Ben Gibbard & DC4C
Like a faucet that leaks & there is comfort in the sound.
But while you debate, ‘half-empty or half-full?’
It slowly rises, your love is going to drown.
Reason Two: Ultra-Trail Running. I got into trail running and did two ultra’s in 2019. I love running on the trails but for some reason I don’t think the ultra’s are quite my jam. I have enjoyed the experience but I think 26.2 miles of that might just be enough, 13.1 miles even better. Ben Gibbard has ran 100 miles at a time, more than once. This makes me like him all that much more. Through Ultra-sign-up’s, you can track the results of any trail runner and the events they’ve entered into. Ben Gibbard’s results are quite impressive. I found out about Gibbard’s trail running habits through a podcast I listened to, to get into the whole trail running culture, The Ginger Runner, who does shoe reviews that I’ve liked and promotes running with a particular focus on Pacific Northwest Running from his home base of Seattle (Gibbard is out of Bellingham-Seattle Area).
Reason Three: Postal Service. Critic’s Darlings. Gibbard I think is one of these people that just has music flowing through him and can’t help relating to others through music and probably seeps songs from his pores. To show his diversity outside of Death Cab, Gibbard has done different collaborations that have him exploring other genres. The Postal Service was a collab between himself and Producer Jimmy Tamborello with the great Jenny Lewis of Rilo Kiley fame on backing vocals. This music came out electronica-based and was just quirky and different. A dancier Radiohead. He also has done the Alt-Country thing with Jay Farrar of Uncle Tupelo and Son Volt fame.
Reason Four: He Was Married to Zooey Deschanel!
There’s probably really good reasons why their marriage went south and didn’t last too long. Word on the Hollywood Gossip-y scene is that Zooey might be a little X-tra. But hey, it’s Zooey. Super beautiful, plays it quirky, and the lead star of one of my more fave COVID-binge series, The New Girl.
Reason Five: Gibbard’s Concerts from Home During COVID-Times.
So Gibbard has been making the most of his time in quarantine during the COVID-Times. He was one of the first I heard of to keep up the music entertainment in a series of performances from home. He started them March 17th right after most states started issuing “Shelter in Place,” orders & proclamations. And he kept it up daily, every day at 4pm PST. Each day there would be some cause you could donate money to, to help raise funds for COVID relief and other efforts to give back.
I know you are all really freaked out right now. I am too. And while I’m proud that we’re all doing the necessary things at the moment to help flatten the curve, I know it has left us all incredibly isolated.
But because we’re all going through this nightmare together we are quite literally NOT alone. Our lives and stories are all linked, maybe more now than they have ever been.
Be it with DCFC, Postal Service, or solo I have always been grateful for the honor you have bestowed upon us by choosing to congregate en masse around our music. Some of you have traveled great distances and/or shelled out large sums of money to see us play and that has never been lost on me. So in this crazy and unprecedented time, I’d like to return the favor by coming to YOU.
For the next few weeks I will be playing songs everyday from my home studio. We will be streaming on Facebook at 4pm PST daily. We’re still working out the details but I’m hoping to take some requests and maybe even have a guest or two stop by digitally. The first show will be tomorrow. It will assuredly be a little wonky and glitchy but we’re gonna do our best.
See You Tomorrow.