The cello tends to be relegated to chamber music and orchestral pieces, but Ben Sollee uses it to craft delightful folk- and pop-tinged tunes. On top of his full-time music career, Sollee also champions environmental sustainability, often touring by bicycle and campaigning against mountaintop removal coal mining in his home state of Kentucky.
He talked to Diversions editor Allison Hussey about his innovative new idea in his latest round of touring and his newest record, Half Made Man.
Diversions: You’ve toured on a bicycle in the past, are you doing that for this tour?
Ben Sollee: This tour this fall will be by van. You can imagine, you’ve got to cover a lot of ground.
So what we’re doing, since we’re not going to be on bicycle, we’re going to be encouraging the audience to be on bicycle.
And so we’re offering anyone that walks, rides their bike or take public transit to the show a $5 voucher at the merch table so that if they want to get a free gift, they can use the $5 voucher.
If they want to use it toward something else, they can do that.