available as downloads on iTunes and as CDs from the artist
Ben Walker was born Benjamin Ward in London, England in 1968, moving to the hamlet of Kersey Uplands, in the county of Suffolk, in 1980. He studied classical piano at Colchester Institute, jazz piano at Leeds College of Music and jazz singing and mandolin at Middlesex University and William Paterson College, New Jersey, gaining a first class degree in Performance Arts from Middlesex University in 1994.
Walker started performing original music solo in Suffolk pubs age 17, eventually becoming involved in folk sessions and mandolin playing while studying jazz and classical music formally. A period as a jobbing musician (including busking) ended in 1998 with a move to Bradford, West Yorkshire and a succession of office jobs, which funded and partly inspired Walker’s self-released debut CD Bahaudin.
Between 2002 and 2010 Walker played gigs and made appearances in West Yorkshire, Suffolk, London, New Jersey and Toronto and toured the former soviet republic of Georgia with singing group Samzeo in 2009 before moving to Toronto, Canada in 2010.
After singing with another Georgian music ensemble, Machari, in 2011, Walker joined forces with Gare Black in Ben and Gary’s Ice Cream Band and met bassist Alfred Gertler. Both musicians were to feature on Walker’s first Canadian release.
Gorgeous, released on iTunes on December 2nd 2013 was an album of re-recordings of songs written between 1986 and 1996 featuring Walker singing and playing most of the parts as well as engineering and producing. A CD party was held at The Cameron House, Toronto on 3 October, 2015.
Also in 2015, Walker had a song picked up by the Family Channel for their show ‘Lost and Found Music Studios’. The episode ‘Wondering’, named after the song, first aired on January 20th 2017.
July 5th 2016 saw the Bandcamp release Astroturf, a download-only album compiling 10 dance-related tracks from the late 1990s. Between March 2017 and December 2018, ‘Straight to Camera Volumes 1 and 2’, a series of no-nonsense low-tech videos were recorded and published.
There are 6 Ben Walker albums and 1 EP available, featuring members of Lindisfarne, 10cc, Jools Holland’s Rhythm and Blues Orchestra and The Sunparlour Players as well as noted jazz and folk musicians Nigel Stonier, Patrick Naylor, Kevin James and David French.
The Ben Walker Group performs in the Toronto area and currently includes Kevin Barrett, Michael Kaler and Tim Shia.
A new album, A Place Like This, was released on July 2nd 2019.
Music lessons in Toronto with Ben Walker:
- Jazz/Folk/Rock Singing
- Classical/Improv Piano or Keyboards
- Folk Guitar or Mandolin
- Music Theory (any level)
Current Rates are:
25$ per 30 minute lesson at my studio in west Toronto
35$ per 30 minute lesson in your home (GTA only, variable depending on your location)