Life and the Land EP pre-orders now available!

6 August 2021
Life and the Land EP pre-orders

Hello! I just wanted to let you know that Life and the Land, my EP with the marvellous singer, songwriter and pianist Kirsty Merryn is now available for pre-order and coming out September 3rd! 

It seems a long time ago that we started thinking together about the traditional folk songs that celebrate our connection to the seasons! Life and the Land takes us through the year’s cycle of death and rebirth, with scarecrows, ploughboys, shepherdesses and the birds of the field telling their tales. If anything, this record feels even more relevant now, after a winter that feels like it’s gone on too long. These songs remind us that all things pass, green things grow, the sun rises and sets and the seasons change. 

Working with a singer and songwriter of such talent like Kirsty who genuinely enjoys bringing traditional material up to date as much as I do has been marvellous. We hope you find listening to these songs as much fun as it was to make them. They’re a blast to play live so we hope we’ll see you on our joint tour, we’ll be seeing you around the place from Harvest to Spring.

You can pre-order the EP here and get a copy signed by both of us – and tickets for the tour are on sale now.


Gigs, guitars and dates for your diary

1 June 2021

Hello! Hope all is well and you’re enjoying the sunshine! 

As things finally look like they are coming back around, I wanted to drop you a quick line to let you know about this year’s plans. It’ll be great to pick up where Thom Ashworth and I left off back in 2019 with some joint dates in Chester at SoundBox on 9th July, and in London at the Green Note on 19th July.

In between I’ll be heading to one of my absolute favourite places, Halsway Manor, to run my guitar masterclass, this is always a wonderful meeting of like minds – and there’s a gig on the Thursday night. If  you’ve been brushing up on your skills during lockdown and you fancy a week in the Somerset sun, maybe you’d like to join me there?

Then, it’s very good to finally be able to say that brilliant singer/songwriter Kirsty Merryn and I will be touring our joint project Life and the Land, alongside the EP which we’re launching on 3rd September. 

This year more than ever it feels like we should appreciate the joy of the seasons and we’ve found some great songs to do it with. Dates for your diary in the poster just here. This should be a really fun show, if you’re lucky enough to have tickets to the (sold out) Magpie’s Nest festival this weekend, you might get a sneak preview! 

Some venues have tickets on sale already, and some will be available soon, so do please keep an eye out for links and updates. 

If we’re in your area we would love to see you on the road, all being well!

Cheers and all the best,

Ben


New Fylde!

8 May 2021
new fylde guitar

Those of you who follow my guitar playing with interest, will know over the years I’ve been strongly affiliated with the guitars of one Roger Bucknall, of Fylde Guitars.

My first proper performance guitar was a second hand Alchemist, bought from Hobgoblin Music in London, which I still have and am very fond of indeed. If you’ve seen me play live, you’ve also probably seen the beast that is my fan-fret Falstaff – that’s the guitar I’m clutching at the top of this website…

However… as goldilocks once said to the three bears, some things are just right. This new guitar is closer in size to my (smaller) Alchemist, which makes it super easy to play when trying to make weird stretches, but has just enough grunt to be able to do what it needs to do at the bottom end without me having to really attack it.

For the guitar connoisseurs amongst you, the back and sides are figured walnut, and very lovely. The top is sinker redwood, which lives up to the hype, sitting somewhere between the spongy response of cedar, and the golf-ball thwack of spruce. It’s also 12 frets to the body, and has an LR Baggs Dual system in place, meaning I’ll be able to experiment in stereo 😁

I’ve already started writing with it – if you’d like to hear what it sounds like, click the link below!

View on YouTube