Who are The Vetivers? The group, in various incarnations featuring Ben Champion and Paul Solecki, has been together for over 6 years and has somehow managed to sneak in an ocassional practice or two reguarly. The band was originally formed by members of the popular band Carnivorous Grass, and has gone on to adopt a more serious, meaningful sound. The Vetivers have appeared at such venues as The Bottleneck, Streetside Records, AMC 30, Richards-Gebaur Air Force Base, Adrian's Cafe, and lots of basements and backyards.

Read the official history of the band on the Bios page.

Behind the Name

So what the heck is this "vetiver" stuff anyway? The word was taken from the R.E.M. song Find the River, but what does it actually mean? Well here you go... all the info you could ever want on the mysterious and illusive inspiration behind the band's name. Just click here.

The Vetivers Info Page is now organized according to year.  Below are the current 2003 articles.  Click on a year for the Vetivers News Archive.

1999          2000          2001          2002          2003


November 25, 2003


First there was the guy from the Vetivers Message Board, now this!  How many Ben Champions could there be in the world?  This Ben Champion, who is known as Ben Champion III to the Vetivers, has his own little web site.  How many Ben Champions do you know?  Collect 'em all!


November 19, 2003


Ben Champion has taken part in some sort of event that criticizes the actions of George Bush and Tony Blair.  No, not their Anti-Vetivers legislation they are trying to pass, but that whole war thing.  You can see some more pictures of Ben, both before and after he was beaten senseless by the police, here.


October 13, 2003


The genius behind the Twelve O'Clock In All The World cover now has his own web site,!  You can view his latest artwork and even buy some of his stuff, which is guaranteed to go way up in value once he dies.  As Vetivers fan(s), it is your duty to buy so much of his stuff that he can hardly keep up with the demand.  Vetivers guitarist Paul Solecki even plans to buy something, but first he must sell a Vetivers CD or two so he can afford it.  So buy a Vetivers CD, buy an original Kiel Johnson masterpiece, and while you're at it buy some good salsa and send it to Paul in Ireland.

October 2, 2003


The pubs in and around Oxford have reported record shortages today and predict that the supply of all alcohol in England could soon be gone in a matter of days if newly arrived Ben Champion and the rest of the Rhodes Scholars keep up their frantic pace.  Ben arrived just this afternoon and he has already started to check out the legendary colleges and surrounding town, if you know what I mean.

"Shmm, hxrkmkslab," said the Vetivers drummer when asked about his experiences so far in Oxford.  "Ifquiom!"  He then hiccupped several times then fell flat on his face.

September 30, 2003


Paul told me to write something for the Vetivers fansÖer fan since Iíll be leaving Kansas on permanent basis. So here it goesÖ. 

Well whatís there left to say? Iím going to move to Florida, and become a part of the elite who actually go out and do something with their lives. Not too long ago I went to a BBQ party at former Vetivers member Jimmy Marchís house, and had a very interesting conversation with one of the guests. Jimmy had mentioned to everyone that I was going to film school, and a grizzled old hairy man approached me to make some small talk. Hereís how that conversation panned out: 

Guest: So youíre going to film school, where at? 

Clyde: Florida. 

Guest: State school? 

Clyde: No itís privately owned. 

Guest: How long is the program. 

Clyde: 13 months, but Iíll be in school for over 14 hours of the day. Itís sort of like a boot camp. 

Guest: Wow that sounds great! 

Clyde: Yeah, Iím pretty excited. 

Guest: (Depression sets in) I wish I did something like that with my life. 

Clyde: YeahÖuhÖI meanÖ(doesnít know what to say next.) 

Guest: All I do is work 9-5, come home, and watch TV all day. 

Clyde: Oh that soundsÖumÖ. 

Guest: Itís good that some people do something with their lives instead of waste it away. (Continues with more self-loathing conversation.) My mother always said blah blah blahÖbut when I graduated from junior high blah blah blahÖ 

Clyde: (Thinking) How the hell am I going to get out of this? 

Great party eh? Letís examine the situation shall we? Basically, the guest reminds me of what will happen if I donít do anything with my life. Iíll be 40 something, married, and lose myself watching compelling television shows such as ESPNís Sport Center. If I donít go out and do something now, I may never get a chance later, or my spirits will be broken so much, I wonít have the willpower to do anything later (like that great conversationalist from the party.) So whether if this entire endeavor works out or not, at least Iíll have the confidence to say that I really tried to do something to escape this blasted negative zone*. With that being said, Iíd like to thank all those who have supported me in making this decision. I value you all. If youíre planning to go to my sisterís b-day party next Saturday, youíll be able to catch my latest film Sleep Paralysis on DVD. Will I be able to edit Jimmyís cardboard performance into something tangible and entertaining? Find out next week!  

Thank You 



Clyde Aaron Kim 



Iím serious if you donít fuck off now, I will fuck you up! 

* For those of you that donít know, the Negative Zone comes from the Marvel comic book The Fantastic Four. The zone is often referred to an alternate dimension that is vastly different from our own. One of the members of the Fantastic Four, Ben Grimm, refers it to a dad-blamed crummy place to live. In the song Cosmic Excelsior, which is based on the Fantastic Four comic, Clyde uses the zone in the reference to describe Olathe. 

September 20, 2003


Today a small country got a little bit bigger, as Vetivers guitarist Paul Solecki travelled from Cork to Dublin wearing nothing but a sheet.  The occasion was the birthday party of friend Michael Rowan's dad and brother, but the party happened in more places than just that house in Booterstown, a Dublin suburb, thanks to Paul.  Pedestrians and cars in Cork City got the first glimpse of the once and future style, and passengers on the Dublin bound train were the next ones to get thrilled.  Nobody sat next to him on the train for some reason.  Upon arrival in Dublin, some kids started making fun of him at the bus stop outside Heuston Station, but that did not deter him.  A nice ride in the front seat of the Number 90 bus ended at the O'Connell St. Bridge, and Paul walked across the famous landmark to the DART station, his toga falling off a few times on the way.  Finally, the train ride to Booterstown and walk down the Avenue completed the over four hour journey, where he joined many other toga-wearing party-goers.

"This was a memorable evening," stated the sheet that stood between Paul and the elements until 9:00 that next morning.  "I had some wine spilled on me, but at least it wasn't white wine.  And I got to meet a lot of other sheets.  You know, when you first are manufactured, you have dreams of one day being made into a toga, but most of us are resigned to spending most of our lives spread out over mattresses or folded up in a closet.  I'm glad I got to live out the dream, at least for one night.  Thanks, Paul!"

September 16, 2003


This evening, Paul and his new friend Barry had the first practice for their new band, a yet unnamed future supergroup.  Barry plays the drums and Paul is on guitar, and halfway through the first practice they enlisted the third member, Aoife, who also plays guitar.  More details will be known after their next practice on Monday, and regular readers of will be kept up to date on the situation.

Some have speculated that the forming of a new band with another drummer has something to do with the Ben Champion Scandal of recent weeks that you have undoubtedly heard so much about (our team of lawyers at have advised us against making any statements at this time), but Paul and Ben (and probably 13 or 14 future bass players) will remain The Vetivers, no matter where in the world we are.

September 5, 2003


Vetivers guitarist Paul Solecki has recorded a version of Guiding Star by Teenage Fanclub to be included in the upcoming tribute album organized by the people from their message board.  The recording consists of three guitars, two vocal tracks, and one mandolin, all recorded by Paul on his four-track.  This marks the Cork debut of the famous four-track, which was used as a mixer for the Twelve O'Clock In All The World CD and had the great honor of recording the first Vetivers tape, The Vetivers in Stereo.

"I'm glad Paul still dusts me off and uses me every now and then," said the four-track.  "Sometimes it seems that he's forgotten about me, but then he goes and uses me as a mixing board during a Vetivers gig or to record his work with Bryce Holt, and I know everything is going to be fine.  I've got a new partner, a 220 to 110 volt adapter/converter, and we're getting along great, so I can't forget to thank him for all his hard work.  Without him, I'd be burned out."  sorry about that bad pun!


August 5, 2003


Tonight Paul was minding his own business reading about the various musical acts scheduled to come to Cork in the near future, when he found out that The Proclaimers played a free concert in Mitchelstown, just 20 miles up the road, a few nights before.  He even said the word "shit" to himself, an act usually reserved for a losing tennis match against Bryan Ross.

"I can't believe I didn't know about it," said Paul in shock.  "The Proclaimers are one of my favorite bands, and I was even on their web site a week or two ago and it didn't say anything about this concert.  I would have gone!  And it was free too!"  Paul hasn't felt this way since February when he forgot to go to the Damien Dempsey concert that was just down the street from his house.  He remembered the next morning.

July 19, 2003


Tonight, in the tranquil coastal town of Cahersiveen, Paul Solecki took the mic for two songs, Roseville Fair and Cahersiveen.  The latter, track 4 on the new Vetivers CD, is about hearing Roseville Fair at a pub in that town three years ago.  Paul's friend Michael Rowan was there to witness the big event.  And although no mob of people carried Paul triumphantly through the streets when he was done singing, they still liked it.  Next up, Paul will attempt to dig up the deceased ocean explorer and sing him Jacques Cousteau.

July 16, 2003


Tonight, Paul and Ben staged their reunion concert as the Vetivers played for a few blankets and lawn chairs full of people in Ben's backyard.  After opening the show by themselves, they were joined on guitar and bass by Erin Runnels for the rest of the show, and Jimmy March sat in with the band for an encore performance.  This concert marked Paul's debut on fiddle and Ben's on accordion.  Paul returned to Ireland the day after the concert and Ben will be in England soon, so the next reunion concert will be held somewhere other than America.

Who is this mystery musician that joined the Vetivers for this concert? has learned that Erin Runnels is a 20 year old pre-vet and animal science major at Kansas State University and has six more years left there.  She is from Overland Park.  Rumor also has it that she is fond of Ben!  Go figure.

July 13, 2003


For the first time in almost seven months, Paul and Ben were together again for a small practice at the house of former Vetiver guitarist Jimmy March. Later on that evening, the two Vetivers continued their practice in Ben's backyard, where they will be having their reunion concert in a few days. They were joined by Ben's girlfriend Erin, who will be playing guitar and bass with the band for that show. Jimmy will also sit in with the band for the historic farewell concert, and Ben will make his debut on accordion! The day after the concert, Paul will go back to Cork to seek his fortune.


May 18, 2003


It's hard to believe, but it was six years ago today that Paul and Ben formed the band that was later to be known as The Vetivers!  They were the only members of the band then, and they still are today, but four other members have come and gone:  bass players Pat "Orlick" Danko, Jim Kelly, and Clyde Kim, and guitarist Jimmy March.  Those four chaps couldn't cope with the demands of fame that every Vetiver has to go through, but you can count on Ben and Paul to not crack under the pressure and keep delivering you the same quality music on the same semi-occasional basis that they have for years, no matter how far apart they live or how crazy Ben gets due to that craziness disease he has, I believe it's called insanity.


January 28, 2003


Tonight, Paul saw his favorite band Teenage Fanclub for the second night in a row and even got to talk with Norman Blake for a few minutes.  Later on he had a few seconds to ask for autographs from Norman and his bandmates Raymond McGinley and Gerard Love, but only to see the proper way to behave in that situation in the future, when the Vetivers will hopefully get a fan or two.  In another twist of fate, Paul also briefly spoke with the famous Guitar George, who was with the boys from Glasgow!  Whether or not their paths will cross again is a mystery...

January 3, 2003


Vetivers mastermind Paul Solecki has arrived in the country of his dreams, Ireland. Over the next six months, he will climb mountains, swim in oceans, meet dogs, learn set dancing, drink Guinness although it's not that good, learn to play the fiddle, become a native speaker of Irish, write a million songs, go to a few classes a week at University College Cork, make regular appearances at Charlie's Pub, play darts, and turn all his white clothes blue. He will do much much more, of course, but I can't go into that here.


The Vetivers News Archive

1999          2000          2001          2002          2003


To contact The Vetivers about booking information, to send a letter of love or hate, to set up a date with a band member, or for questions to the Vetivers, go back in time to when The Vetivers existed!


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