'Packed with a lethal dose of charm...a heaping helping of sweetness, sorrow, spirituality and lust channeled through a well-worn heart." -St. Paul Pioneer Press, MN "After the first lines I was sold...Connelly writes songs that glow after repeated listens." -Chicago Daily Herald, IL "A melancholy tribute to a backwards life. Connelly's smart humor shines through." -Dayton City Paper, OH 'blessed with urgent musicianship, passionate vocals, entertainingly off-kilter compositions, and an overall feeling of immediacy.' -Nashville Scene, TN "The incisive humor doesn't overpower Connelly's bright songwriting or able guitar." -Performing Songwriter Magazine "minimal and whimsical aching heart songs" -Washington Post, D.C. "will charm the pants off of you.' -Minnesota Daily, MN Ben Connelly's covered the country: hitchhiking alone, then in a van with alt-country demolition crew Steeplejack, and since 2000, solo again with an old guitar. He's done his time in rehabs and detoxes; he's given himself to fathering and Zen practice, and through it all he's been devoted to song. Ben Connelly has a calling to tell stories, the ones he's lived and heard and the ones he's invented. The songs on his new album Over You tell stories about love and death, little lights in the night, an umbrella, the raw ache of heartbreak, and what's beyond the stars. On "I'm Over You" and "Stay in My Arms," Connelly and drummer Peter Anderson make a small band's worth of racket with just a guitar, a drum kit, and voices. Connelly makes his grandfather's old Gibson drive like a train, bass and treble parts chugging away. While live Connelly plays solo, relying on the songs, his dazzling finger-style guitar, and conversation with the crowd to forge a beautiful intimacy, on Over You he brings in a supporting cast of Minneapolis luminaries and a bunch of his other instruments to expand the sound. Mark Mallman and Joanna James, both great writers on their own, contribute backing vocals. Brian O'Neill provides pedal steel, and Jason Keillor handled the recording gear. Connelly also plays piano, organ, bass, and cello to make a record that shows his love of the broad cloth of folk, rock, and tin pan alley as a well as a yen to stretch it's edges. With several releases with Steeplejack and two previous solo CDs out (Big Red Throbbing Heart and You Burn Hotter), his songs have appeared on college, commercial, and public radio, as well as national television and theatre and film productions. Live he transports audiences across the northern Midwest and East coasts with what Minneapolis's City Pages describe as 'furious finger-picking and top-notch tunes.'
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