Interview: Scott Benjamin
Photo Credit: Bill Phelps @billphelpsstudio
What got you into music, and if you had not gotten into music what would you be doing today?
It definitely was not the piano lessons I took as a young child-those were enough to make the piano an enemy for life. But, I used to sit down at the piano and either make things up or play songs I heard on the radio. And, this was the only time during a somewhat tumulptous childhood that I felt free and myself. This has continued to this day and I play much more now than when I was child. If I didn't have music what would I be doing is impossible for me to answer, but I'm certain it would be great, haha!
What do you like to do when you are not playing music and how does that influence your creativity?
This is most of the time. I run my own landscaping business, I read a lot and go on short trips to remote towns to find new places to eat, when I have the company. As long as I don't settle into complacency and continue to look for new experiences then creativity is always flowing, or at least ebbing and flowing.
Where are you based out of and how did that influence your music?
Currently I live in Saint Paul, MN where it is inclement weather nearly half of the year. So, this definitely leads to a more productive self when it comes to music than say if it was 80 degrees every day.
If you could play any show with any lineup, who would be on the ticket?
I'd have Amy Winehouse on b/u vocals, Charles Mingus on bass, Ziggy Modeliste on drums [ The Meters].
If you could go back in time and give yourselves advice, what would it be?
I would tell myself that life is not happening to me, rather it is happening through me. And then make sure that I understood what it is that I was saying.
Of your songs which one means the most to you and why?
Probably “FROM MY WINDOW” which is a solo piano piece that I wrote for my mother.
What kinds of messages do you like to get across in your music?
Things are rarely as they seem. There is no point in judging our circumstances as good or bad because we never know what is needed on the path to our own happiness. Sometimes things we deem as terrible lead us to things that are awesome so it is best to accept things as they are while always doing better.
What are your plans for the future, and do you have anything that you want to spotlight that is coming up?
I have a full length album that I am finishing up. And, it is a firmly diverse selection of songs. Also, I'm looking forward to the nice weather when I can resume playing my accordion outside. It's very lethargic.