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Ben Castle

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Biography of Ben Castle

Son of famous British TV personality and jazz trumpeter Roy Castle, Ben Castle is a familiar name to those who follow the UK jazz scene. He has been a regular player on the jazz circuit performing with a whole host of acts as diverse as Stan Tracey to Jamie Cullum. He started playing clarinet at the age of seven and added sax at nine. Got Clarinet grade 8 (with distinction) at 13 and by 15 was doing his first gigs. Ben formed his first quartet “The Madding Crowd” in 1994 at the age of 19. In 2001 he was awarded the “Rising Star” award at the British Jazz Awards and was nominated in two categories at the first BBC Jazz Awards. He has appeared on projects by such diverse artists as Moloko, Kula Shaker, Marillion, Reef, Sting, Mica Paris, Stan Tracey, Humphrey Lyttleton, Omar and Carleen Anderson – for whom he produced an entire album. Although several jazz record labels have pursued him, he has never signed to any until now. His critically acclaimed debut album “4 from the madding crowd” was self financed and laid the foundations of sonic experiment upon which Ben and his group would build on. Ben’s first recording for OT records is a totally new collection of soundscapes.

“Blah Street” marks a real milestone in Ben’s Career. It’s the “real” Ben Castle performing the music he that is most personal to him. This album is totally unlike anything he has done before. Two years in the making and mostly recorded at his favourite recording studio “Blah Street” this album marks the beginning of a new era for Ben and is already getting a massive critical response. “The Heckler” has recently won the first prize in the International Songwriting Competition held in Nashville USA and judged by Pat Metheny. The track is also due to be recorded by Joe Zawinul who is a big fan of Ben’s new direction. The album features music that will deliberately take the listener on a roller coaster of emotions. Music that entertains, challenges, teases and plays with the concept of “what is jazz”.

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