Benjy Ferree is a character with enough charisma to draw you into his oddball world. To me, Ferree is a local, growing up in nearby Prince George's County (a Maryland suburb just outside of Washington). I quite like his songwriting, and particularly his singing style — there's something in that wavering voice that reminds me of a cross between T-Rex and Jimmie Rodgers.
So I was delighted to have Ferree visit the NPR offices and perform at my desk with guitar in hand and wig on head. (Gosh, hope I didn't just spill the beans, Benjy.)
Ferree is somewhat obsessed with Peter Pan, and his great new record (Come Back to the Five and Dime Bobby Dee Bobby Dee) functions as a eulogy to child actor Bobby Driscoll, who played Peter Pan. Driscoll's life ended in tragedy — he was homeless and dead at age 31. But Ferree's music often has a lilt, as well as more than just hints of humor. You'll get a good taste of that in this Tiny Desk Concert.