Ben Kweller was an indie rocker that came into the scene in the early/mid-2000’s. I don’t think he got super, super popular, but me and my sister loved him. There’s a 7 year age different between us, so agreeing on a popular music artist when she was in her late teens was pretty remarkable. We loved this song because we were each other’s family trees. (Granted it’s kind of a love song, but we have sisterly love – sisters are doing it for themselves – and it’s about family.)
I took her to see him in concert the day I quit my first big girl job, without another job lined up, set on changing careers. It was kind of an intense, brave, reckless, scary day, and the soundtrack to Ben Kweller made everything better. And I had my family tree around.
She sent me a hand made card with the lyrics on it a long time ago. It’s been through a lot. The writing is streaked from when it was on my bulletin board and I left my window open and it started to rain. It’s currently on my fridge at home, and wherever I go next, it will go with me.
Ben Kweller also has this really random song called ‘Panamanian Girl’, which we liked to pretend was written for us. (Don’t worry, it wasn’t.) He was also in this band called The Bens for a hot second. It was Ben Kweller, Ben Lee, and Ben Folds. They have this song called ‘Just Pretend’ and it’s a pretty nice, unknown gem. You’ll have to do some searching, but they can be found.
“A broken branch I’d be, if you weren’t grown to me. You are, you are, you are, my family tree. Be good to me. Take care of me. Bop bop!”