With albums named Volume One and Volume Two and a self-effacing band name like She & Him, M. Ward and Zooey Deschanel are clearly trying to be humble and put the focus on the music, despite the high profiles they own in their respective careers. This hip folk/country duo will take the West Stage of Forecastle Festival this Sunday at 7:00 p.m. just before Spoon and headliner, The Flaming Lips.
She & Him has won critical praise for their dreamy, sometimes bittersweet but mostly feel-good music, with its layered harmonies, Deschanel's accomplished lyrics, and Ward's deft guitar work. In addition to his successful solo career as a songwriter, singer, and musician, Ward brings his considerable producing and arranging skills to this collaboration. He has also produced most of his own albums as well as Jenny Lewis' outing, Rabbit Fur Coat with The Watson Twins. Notably, he is one of the Monsters of Folk along with Jim James, Conor Oberst, and Mike Mogis.
Deschanel, of course, is also a well-regarded actress, famous for her deadpan delivery, ethereal beauty, and occasional singing turns, as in the comedy Elf with Will Ferrell. Her most recent success was the Golden Globe nominated (500) Days of Summer with Joseph Gordon-Levitt. Of her songwriting, Deschanel admits to older influences, such as Cole Porter and Gershwin as well as classic songwriters like Carole King, Roy Orbison, and Bobbie Gentry.
Ward and Deschanel met while performing a cover song for a movie that he (or should I say Him?) scored and she starred in. They felt such a good chemistry together that Deschanel showed Ward her trove of songs, which initiated the creation of the band. Performing at South By Southwest and the Newport Folk Festivals, where the duo won rave reviews, they followed up Volume One, which was also named as Album of the Year by Paste magazine, with Volume Two this past March.
Check out She & Him performing "In the Sun" on Jimmy Kimmel Live.
Check out Forecastle’s schedule page and band notes on the Lineup page. Ticket options and the various special packages available can be viewed on the Forecastle site as well.