Hi, my name is Ben and I am from Pembrokeshire in South Wales, United Kingdom, currently living in Japan. I have been a constant gigging musician since 1993.
I joined my first professional band at the age of 18. This gave me experiences of promoting 3 EP's and 1 album, gigging around the UK (from pubs to festivals), being interviewed and playing live on the radio, and also a TV appearance at the Welsh music awards, for which my band was nominated 'Best new act'. Supporting the likes of 'Dodgy', 'The Counterfeit Stones', 'The Rockin berries'.
At the age of 22 I managed a recording studio for 12 months, for teenagers with troubles and disabilities to come play and record songs, or learn more about the recording process.
I also started my first band, and started song writing which saw us signed to Columbia publishing Wales and Total music Wales off our first demo album, during this time I relocated to Surrey, England.
Our first professional EP became No.1 on Rock radio, and off the back of that it was put on 4000 jukeboxes around the midlands. This led us being given an offer of a record deal with BMG and an offer of opening for Bon Jovi on their world tour, but with band members leaving, the band was left in disarray and we split up.
I continued to play around the world in Duo's & bands for periods of 3 to 6 months at a time before going to study music at The ACM in Guildford, in that time I got to play with the likes of:
- 'Pete Friesen' guitarist for The Almighty and Alice Cooper,
- 'Paul Geary' bass player for Gabrielle, Chris Rea, George Michael, Simply red, Nic Kershaw,
- 'Jon Bishop' guitarist for Shakin Stevens, Bonnie Tyler, Westlife, & who often lends his talents to shows such as 'Dancing on Ice',
- 'Mike Casswell' played for The Brian May band, leader of the guitar DVD series 'Lick Library'
also Newton Falkner, Roger Taylor, Guthrie Govan,T.M Stevens, Chad Smith, Chris Eaton, 'Ace' of Skunk Anansie.
Other side projects have included:
- Mixing and producing a charity single which 'The Sun' newspaper wrote an article on.
- Occasionally recording and supplying backing tracks to one of the leading internet backing track sites for professional musicians.
- Completing a course with BBC Radio
- Ran a small Entertainments agency for 2 years
- Producing & Recording demo's for musicians
I currently play in the Acoustic duo named 'The Duo Effect' onboard cruise ships.
I was previously the band leader for 4 years of the very successful cruise ship party band 'FrontRow' until I decided to form 'The Duo Effect' in Oct 2017. The ships I have been fortunate to play on have included, Celebrity Eclipse, Celebrity Infinity, Celebrity Reflection, Celebrity Constellation, Norwegian Sun, Celebrity Century, Celebrity Silhouette, Celebrity Equinox, Celebrity Millennium, Celebrity Solstice.