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Ben E King

Jazz/Blues

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About Ben E King

Born Benjamin Earl Nelson, in Henderson, North Carolina, young Ben's family relocated to New York City when he was at the tender age of nine. Possessing one of the most elegant baritone voices ever, Rock & Roll Hall of Fame alumnus Ben E. King's imprint on the musical landscape is so indelible that an optimum barometer has been set for countless aspiring performers. From a youngster in Harlem to an embraceable solo artist, Ben E. King's contributions to the pop music spectrum are incalculable. 

From the first cut of his upcoming release, I've Been Around, to the very last track on this superlative disc, Ben E. King magnifies his presence as a monumental force in the ever-changing entertainment arena. I've Been Around is a twelve-track rainbow collection of fresh, eclectic tunes, including the title track, "I've Been Around," which is a rapturous mix of R&B and indefatigable jazz-funk; "Comparing Her To You," a lingering ballad laced with a smidgeon of new country; and "I Bet You That," a vocally infectious jam with a uniquely frenetic pulse. In addition to these and a plethora of other novel selections, keep an ear open for the surprise bonus track.

As a member of The Drifters, Ben sang lead on such chart-stoppers as "Dance With Me," This Magic Moment," "Save The Last Dance," and "I Count The Tears." In 1960, and in the midst of unimaginable success as a Drifter, Ben made the decision to aim even higher by pursuing a lifelong dream  to choose and perform many of his own tunes as a solo artist. This also called for Ben to create a stage name to distinguish the solo artist from the Drifter. By shortening his original name, by using his middle initial, and by displacing his last name, he now became known universally as Ben E. King.

In 1961, as Ben E. King the icon that the world has come to cherish, his first hit was one that even the Queen of Soul was moved to cover, the magnificent "Spanish Harlem." But his second heart-melting single, "Stand By Me," reached gargantuan proportions. That # 1 R&B hit and top five pop jam (written by Ben E. King, Leiber and Stoller) has been sung or covered by almost everyone who ever walked into a recording studio. Why, even Hollywood film-director Rob Reiner was inspired to select "Stand By Me" as the title for his 1986 feature film and sound score by the same title. During that same period "Stand By Me" was re-released as a single, rose to the top ten in the US, and rocketed to the # 1 spot in the UK.

Ben E. King is still recording and pleasing fans from Tokyo to the streets of L.A. Truly, one of the premier group and individual artists to ever clutch a microphone, Ben E. King's rich, velvety voice is a priceless national treasure. From a youngster in Harlem to an embraceable solo artist, Ben E. King's contributions to the pop music spectrum are incalculable.