Recently, M.Ward was tasked with the tough task of opening for legendary Beach Boy Brian Wilson at the Hollywood Bowl. Such an opportunity would typically render the prospect of leaving an impression on fans extremely difficult. Not for Ward. The singer-songwriter pulled out all the stops and surprised fans when he brought two of his musical acts – Monsters of Folk and She & Him – onstage to perform alongside him.
Ward began the collaborative performances when he introduced Jim James of My Morning Jacket and Conor Oberst of Bright Eyes (fourth band member Mike Mogis was not present). The 3 Monsters Of Folk members performed their song “Whole Lotta Losin” after jamming to Ward’s “Vincent O’Brien” and “To Save Me.” He later brought out the She to his Him – vocalist, pianist, and ukulele strummer Zooey Deschanel. The duo performed Ward’s “Never Had Nobody Like You” and “Magic Trick.” Check out the performance below.
Ward has led a prolific career since his debut in 1999. As a solo artist, the musician has released 9 solo albums and 2 EP’s. In 2006, Ward met Deschanel while both were working on the film The Go Getter. After director Martin Hynes suggested the pair perform a duet for the film, the two singers began to collaborate together and She & Him was born. Deschanel wrote and Ward composed music. She & Him since produced 5 albums, including a Christmas record, in 6 years.
Although their first album was not released until 2009, Ward joined Monsters of Folk long before he co-formed She & Him. The 4 folk singerss met when touring together with their bands and meeting backstage to play together. Scheduling kept the 4 singers separated, but eventually their self-titled debut album was shared with the world. While the band produces music at a slow pace, Ward promised in an interview with Billboard that there is more to come from Monster of Folk.