"I can remember specifically saying the Cure were my favourite band back in second grade," he tells the in 2003.
Six hours from Minneapolis and eight from Chicago, and known mostly as the hometown of business magnate Warren Buffett, Omaha proves to be a culturally isolating place for the budding musician.
Just a year older than Justin Timberlake, he has tried everything from guitar rock to synth ballads, and has basically hewed to the same model for two decades, a mix of '90s emo earnestness with '70s spiritual-seeking.
"I never had the problem of the Mickey Mouse [Club] star who suddenly had to reinvent themselves with a hard-rock record.
“Strumming so much that it started to disintegrate.
When I sent it back to them to be repaired, they were like, ‘What do you to your guitars?
Team Love's next release may well be a solo album by Jenny Lewis, singer with Rilo Kiley, an LA band whose beautiful, story-telling album More Adventurous comes out here next week.
Mini-mogul Oberst comes from a middle-class background in Omaha, Nebraska.
He's released others under the name Desaparecidos (a band playing rockier material), and is forever popping up on records by other bands signed to Saddle Creek, the Omaha label he co-founded.Then there's his other label Team Love, which he and his manager launched a year ago.Team Love unearthed Willy Mason, a 19-year-old singer-songwriter from Martha's Vineyard in Massachusetts whose Where the Humans Eat album is garnering rave advance notices.One Oberst, 15 and adopting the name of Bright Eyes, hisses bitterly into a tape machine in his bedroom and wins the hearts of moody young misanthropes with carefully mussed hair.Another Oberst, 25, sells more than half-a-million copies of I'm Wide Awake, It's Morning, is heralded as his generation's Bob Dylan, and is photographed kissing Winona Ryder.We’ve never seen anything like this.'” He pulls his shoulders back.“I’d only had it for two years, but I’m sure my technique isn’t very sophisticated.”Oberst has just stepped out from underneath the lights of a small shared studio at CBS Interactive in midtown Manhattan, where he and his guitar-playing cousin-in-law, Steve Bartolomei, have just finished performing two songs from his forthcoming solo LP, , for a video segment to air on Conor Oberst is a protest singer in the classic mould.Last autumn, he was a key member of the Vote For Change Tour, the series of concerts featuring REM and Bruce Springsteen that sought to rally support for John Kerry in the so-called "swing states"."The songs, essentially, are just pretty simple folk songs," he told magazine in 2005."What I find interesting is the idea that we can take those songs and just dress them up in a million different ways." Whether it's the heart-on-sleeve confessionals of early Bright Eyes, the pointedly political Desaparecidos — who just released their sophomore album, in 2000: "The people that like it really fucking like it." 1980 to 1992Conor Oberst is born February 15, 1980 in Omaha, NE.