The band that proudly produced what they coined as “punk rock for sissies” is back and ready to deliver on a promise made late last year: To give fans a new album by summer. The Sound of the Life of the Mind is now set to hit stores September 18th, funded entirely by fans.

Ben Folds Five crowd-funded their new album with help from over 7,000 fans via the Kickstarter-like site called PledgeMusic.

Depending on the amount pledged, fans are set to receive special items, the most impressive of which can purchased for $2500. This jumbo donation will get you a custom recorded version of “Do It Anyway” with your name woven into the final verse. With some limited-edition items having already sold out, the following are still available in exchange for a pledge: New CD, vinyl copy (unsigned), tour t-shirt & download, new CD + tour t-shirt & download, framed limited-edition Bonnaroo photo, signed & framed setlist collection from Mountain Jam and lastly your name in a song.

As of the printing of this story, the band has already exceeded their expected financial target by an impressive 247%.

PledgeMusic has also turned out to be a powerful resource for the band with Folds requesting t-shirt art and last-minute logo work for the band’s self-owned ImaVeePee Records. The conversation between the band and those who pledged had become an intimate one. In a series of video blogs posted to PledgeMusic, Folds comes clean about his odd writing and production style.

This isn’t the first time an artist has been crowd-funded Former Dresden Dolls singer turned solo artist, Amanda Palmer, famously blew past $1 million in funding in just 30 days.

–Jay Tilles, CBS Local


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