Thursday, 21 June 2018

Ben Marwood? Well, he's no Randy Newman.

Hello blog,

Where to even begin? The sun is out, we're at the start of Summer and life is rumbling along. You know where it's good to be between May and August? Outside all the time. I would happily play no shows every summer if it meant more time looking for bats, bees, butterflies and other names of stuff that fit this alliterative model. If only hornets were called bornets. But, alas. Balas.

But, you know, sometimes you have to sacrifice evenings and hole yourself up in a rehearsal room with a band and then play some gigs. On my drive to hit forty shows in support of latest album Get Found, I offer to you the following shows for June/July:

#34: Sat 23rd June FROME All Roads Lead To Frome (all dayer)
fb event / tickets

#35: Thu 12th July 2000TREES FESTIVAL Main Stage
#36: Sat 14th July  2000TREES FESTIVAL Forest Session
line-up, tickets etc

#37: Sun 15th July READING Readipop Festival
line-up, tickets etc

Everything is set to lead up to show #40, which should be the Fulford Arms on October the 20th in York.

Other stuff:
I was interviewed for issue #49 of Stencil Magazine. Here are some highlights:

Or maybe

We do talk about other things too. The full (gigantic) mag is here.

Other than that, the best album I've heard lately has been by brand new up-and-comer Randy Newman. 'Dark Matter' is out now and well worth a listen. Suspend your disbelief! The man is like a musician who accidentally swallowed a showreel.

I'll leave you with his recent Tiny Desk Concert for NPR.

Stay suncreamed.

Friday, 2 March 2018

Additional tour dates confirmed

In the words of 2003: hey ya.

We've confirmed two more shows for April's run of UK dates, so here's the final list:

NEWPORT Le Pub tickets
NOTTINGHAM JT Soar tickets
SOUTHAMPTON Joiners tickets
10 BRISTOL The Exchange tickets
11 LONDON The Monarch tickets
13 CHELTENHAM Frog & Fiddle tickets
14 LEEDS Singleshot (matinee show) tickets
14 MANCHESTER Aatma tickets

Support TBC any day now, honest.

Hope you're staying safe in the snow.

Thursday, 15 February 2018

Three Benboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

Sure, I could photoshop some billboards to go with the heading - Three Billboards is a good film, incidentally, and if you like watching good films then Three Billboards is a good film you could see - but life is short and time is precious so here is some news, not in billboard format:

1. UK Tour in April
Barry is hard at work routing a UK tour that a) hits as many places as possible in nine days and b) makes sure I'm in Reading on Wrestlemania evening, or else various members of my family are going to decapitate me. So far we have these dates:

5 NEWPORT Le Pub tickets
6 NOTTINGHAM JT Soar tickets
9 SOUTHAMPTON Joiners tickets
10 BRISTOL The Exchange tickets
11 LONDON The Monarch tickets
14 MANCHESTER Aatma tickets

Supports are TBC and I suspect there'll be two or three more shows to add to that before the next week rolls around. Unfortunately we can't get to Scotland this time but plans are afoot for some informal whisky tasting evenings disguised as gigs later on in the year.

2. 2000Trees #mainstage
I know, I know. Thursday 12th July I'll open the main stage at last, and it only took years of people yelling it in crowds. It's a good job they weren't shouting "car park".

It'll be a great pleasure to finally get to step out onto the main stage since this is the work of tireless years of espionage, counter-espionage, bribing, vote rigging and playing every other stage I could find. Apart from the busking one next to the silent disco. Who wants to busk when you can silently disco?

3. 2000Trees warmup show
I'm honoured to be invited along to this year's All Roads To Frome at Cheese & Grain, Frome. It'll be on the 23rd of June, which just so happens to be the exact day I'll be playing a gig in Frome for the very first time. What are the odds? 1.

I couldn't find a ticket link so here, have this Facebook event.

Y'all take care now.

Wednesday, 29 November 2017

Safe Mode: a demo for a very limited time


I'm always a little bit weird when it comes to releasing demos before the actual finished songs are available - many is the time a younger Ben Marwood has been disappointed by studio versions simply because they aren't the demos he was used to, but then again young Ben was quite the idiot.

For the past few weeks, a demo of Safe Mode has been available on Bandcamp even though a studio version won't follow for a while, and we had some t-shirts printed too.

Safe Mode demo
Safe Mode tees

And lo, at roughly midnight on the 1st of December, the Safe Mode demo will come back down for a while. I'm a sucker for a holiday special, so perhaps it will be back for Christmas Day. Can't have you getting too attached though.

Thanks to all new friends who came out to the German tour. I am still so full of food. How do you people walk around having eaten so much so regularly?

My final show of the year is at the Rising Sun Arts Centre on 16th December, a holiday blowout with my good friends Non Canon and Band of Hope. Come on down, there are still some tickets. It's in Reading.

I'm off to learn some Christmas songs.

Monday, 30 October 2017

Autumn for Benjamin in Germany

Hello neighbour!

The clocks have gone back, did you notice? Of course, you did, because we've been stumbling around in the dark all day in tears, bumping into things.

This Saturday I play in Bolton at the Alma Inn. The show is free, it's an all-day thing, and it's the first time I've ever been to Bolton so, hey, there's that.

Since it's so dark over here, my good friend Nick Parker and I are off on a Science Mission to use some Science to work out whether it's darker here, or darker in Germany (and once, Belgium). Our results will be published in secret and never revealed. EVER.

Anyway, here are the dates:

NOVEMBER (w/Nick Parker)
17 Leefdaal, Belgium House Show
18 Rulle, Germany House Show
19 Hannover, Germany House Show
21 Langenberg, Germany House Show
22 Duisburg, Germany House Show
23 Marburg, Germany Molly Malone's

I'm pretty excited about all this, because I get to sample the famous Belgio-Deutsch* hospitality first hand in people's actual houses, able to speak none of their native language, and I get to hang out with Nick Parker. Oh and hot on the heels of having never been to Bolton, I have also never been to Germany. Or Belgium. Or, come to think of France. Or Ireland. Or..

Enough! I'm looking forward to some time on The Mainland and perfecting the art of the European House Show. I'm a huge fan of a songwriter named Will Johnson (you can hear his work here and here) and playing house shows in Texas are pretty much how he spends his time and hey, if house shows are good enough for him..

If you're in the area and you'd like to come to one of these shows, please contact us on Twitter or via Facebook and we'll do our best.

Alles klar, etc

*not a word

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Nights onstage, and Nights on a bus.

Hi all!

Tuesday is currently in full swing, and by that I mean it exists and we're alive. Fun! Tonight I'm at Camden Monarch alongside my good friends Quiet Quiet Band, but I thought I'd take a moment to plug a couple of charity shows I have coming up:

Reading Oxjam Takeover @ Oakford Social Club
Reading, info & tickets etc

Alma Inn w/Joe McCorriston & Dave Giles
Bolton, free show

There you go.

Also, back in May we recorded a version of Nights on a bus at the back of the Roundhouse. Xtra Mile have collected up all the sessions that happened that weekend onto a nice easy compilation:

Here it is in the XMR shop.


Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Got Found

Yes, yes, I know. Months and months and I don't write and I don't call.

I could say I was out planning something huge for your next birthday, but eventually you'll find out that I've just been down the chip shop for five months and I've only come home in search of ketchup.

Oh, that and I finally released my third album, Get Found.

Don't believe me? Here it is:

It's been out now for four months and twenty-three days* and just to prove to myself it still exists I'm listening to it right now. As a single piece of work I think it's up there (maybe better than) things I've done before, even if it is probably one song too long. It's always been one song too long - problem was, every time I dropped a song, it suddenly felt one song too short. This is how men go mad.

What else happened? Oh yes, I hit the road to promote the album on a ten-date UK tour, with four of those sold out, making it the Most Successful Ben Marwood Headline Tour ever. I could pretend like that was anything to do with me, but it was probably something to do with my excellent touring friends and opening acts Non Canon (aka Barry) and Helen Chambers (aka.. Helen). We had excellent fun heading to places I personally hadn't been in a while and then it was Easter Monday and it was over and Barry and I went to an Asda and left with armfuls (quite literally) of cut-price Easter eggs for our loved ones.

Barry also made me this video, which is precisely fuck all to do with the tour but has everything to do with the album:

Is that it? Probably not. I also played the Roundhouse as part of Frank Turner's Lost Evenings festival (ta, Frank), played at 10.30 a.m. - yes, 10.30 a.m. in the morning - to some very hungover faces at this year's 2000 Trees Festival and probably some other stuff I've forgotten.

Life continues to be interesting and occasionally admittedly a bit of a struggle, mostly from a limited mobility/maximum exhaustion standpoint, but I'm delighted that I have 15 shows under my belt this year without being even slightly dead. 15 shows! Sure, you punk kids can do that in a week, but for me it's more than the previous two years combined.

I have some more shows coming up, but more on that another time.

I hope you're all well,

*(no matter how many years we get past 1990, describing any period of time still puts the start of Nothing Compares 2 U in my head)