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The Triangle - The Independent Student Newspaper at Drexel University

Philly Artist of the Week: Songwriter Jesse Ruben

In 2008, Philly-bred singer-songwriter Jesse Ruben self-released his first album, “Aiming For Honesty,” which included some fan favorites such as “Ace of Spades” and “A Lack of Armor.” This album also includes one of Ruben’s favorite songs, “Advice.”

Local singer-songwriter Jesse Ruben returned to his hometown Oct. 24 to support his EP “Thoughts I’ve Never Had Before, Part 2,” the follow-up to his latest album “Thoughts I’ve Never Had Before, Part 1.”

“‘Advice’ was really different for me to write because there is no chorus, and the people that like that song have the taste in music of the people that I want to play music for,” Ruben said. “The lyrics are some of my favorite that I’ve ever written. It’s quiet and intimate, and it’s just a really good moment at shows.”

Another song off “Aiming For Honesty” that means a lot to Ruben is “Song For Zack.” Ruben wrote this song for his friend Zack, who was paralyzed six years ago. In honor of Zack, Ruben is also a Christopher Reeve Foundation Champion’s Committee co-chair.

Ruben’s second full-length album, “The Ones That Matter,” was released in 2010. This album features standouts such as “Unbreakable” and “Bleecker and Sixth.”

Finally giving “The Ones That Matter” a break, Ruben released “Thoughts I’ve Never Had Before, Part 1” earlier in 2012. Songs on this EP include my personal favorite, “I Should Get Out More.” In this song, Ruben sings about the truths of college life.

Ruben returned to Philadelphia Oct. 24 to support the release of his follow-up EP, “Thoughts I’ve Never Had Before, Part 2.” His set included several new songs off the EP such as “Family” and “Not Getting Any Easier.” It also included some old fan favorites such as “Unbreakable” and “Stupid American Guy.”

Ruben closed the show with his single “We Can” off his EP “Thoughts I’ve Never Had Before, Part 1.” Ruben was inspired to write this song when the Christopher Reeve Foundation asked him to run for them in a marathon. He had never run a marathon before, nor was he athletic, but he agreed in honor of his friend Zack, and he is now training for his third marathon.

Ruben is currently on tour with Ron Pope to promote “Thoughts I’ve Never Had Before, Part 2.” You can find tour dates near you by visiting his website, jesseruben.com. Keep your eye out for more from Ruben; I have a feeling he isn’t going anywhere any time soon.