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Music Beats Cancer: Ben Howard

Music Beats Cancer

Ben Howard

Benjamin John “Ben” Howard is an English singer-songwriter, musician, and composer. Born in London, he moved to Totnes, Devon, in his teens. Howard’s musically-inclined parents exposed him to their favorite musicians at a young age, such as Nina Simone, Bob Dylan, and Simon & Garfunkel, sparking in him the love for music.

By the age of eleven, he was writing love songs and playing several instruments. After a short spell studying journalism, he decided to quit and focus on making melodic, rootsy folk music full-time.

After building up a reputation with his gigs across the UK, he became notable to a broader audience with his dreamy acoustic debut album entitled Every Kingdom. It was sold in excess of one million copies globally and received a Mercury Music Prize nomination, helping him win two Brit Awards in 2012 for British Breakthrough and British Solo Male Artist.

By that time, his career was successfully launched in America, with Every Kingdom being released in April 2012 and a US tour confirmed. His songs started playing in popular TV shows – the song “Promise” was featured in two TV dramas – House and Suits – while the song “Oats in Water” from the following EP featured in the TV show The Walking Dead.

Aside from his great talent, Howard is known for his disdain towards popularity and the business side of music. He doesn’t want to be mistaken for another pop-folk singer-songwriter. “We are taught these days that being famous is more important than actually doing something. That’s the bit I’m reluctant about,” said Ben Howard in an interview with the Independent.

His attitude towards mainstream music didn’t stop his fans from coming to his shows. Actually, his concerts still sell out quite quickly because people love the atmosphere Howard and his impressive band make.

Ben Howard is a confessional singer whose songs emanate from his personal experiences. Love and heartache are certainly not the only topics. There are songs about anxiety, self-help, anguish, and so much more. “I just write about myself all the time, which is a funny one, because I don’t really like sharing much stuff with other people, apart from music,” he says.

In June 2018, Howard’s third album was released, titled Noonday Dream. Together with his sprawling six-piece band, Ben had the opportunity to perform two songs from the album, Nica Libres At Dusk and Towing The Line on Later… with Jools Holland.

Though he prefers to stay out of the limelight, he still loves to support the fundraisers and charities he’s passionate about. He is a returning artist at The Eden Sessions, an educational charity that aims to promote public education and research in flora and fauna, and a long-time supporter of Barefoot Wine Beach Rescue Project, the most recognizable summer beach cleanup program in the UK. He also wholeheartedly supported the Secret 7″, an annual event that combines music and art in aid of Teenage Cancer Trust.

We are always happy to see young and talented artists who work hard to be agents of positive change in the world. We hope he continues to do the same for many years to come!


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