Ben Lee, has blessed the Australian music industry with his quirk and charm for more than two decades, but how much do we really know about him? Not enough, is the answer you were looking for! Now based in Los Angeles, Aussie expat Ben will be on the Gold Coast this month for Bleach* festival, so we figured there was no better time to get know the man behind the music…
Think about what you were doing at the age of 14? Were you watching teen movies? Having sleepovers with your friends? Participating in the odd weekend sporting match? As a 14 year old, Ben was just starting off his career as a singer and songwriter with the band, Noise Addict.
Although Ben discovered his passion at a young age, the musician and actor admits that his career has been, and continues to be, a journey of self-growth. Fame and fortune are two things that most people only dream of but what comes after them, Ben asks? For him, there was a realisation that placing too much focus on these two things only boosts egos and can lead people to live in a semi-conscious world. The singer says that “the age of hyped-up rock stars is a thing of the past” and that “music is now more about communicating with and sharing like brothers and sisters”. Ben says he still possesses a strong love for music and song creation, but what has changed is his approach. The muso now focuses on performing at more comfortable and relaxed venues and events, just like Bleach*, because his music “has always been suited to a more chilled-out, intimate atmosphere”.
As well as his musical commitments, Ben told haven that he has recently started collaborating on the Qollari Essentials Project.
“The Qollari theory is that if everyone was engaged in ethical and entrepreneurial business and had a built-in charitable component, many of the world’s physical problems would be taken care of,” he explains. Ben’s enthusiasm for his work with this project is obvious.
“I basically get to sit down, play a bit of music and talk to people about a concept that I find really interesting,” he says.
More than 20 years down the track and 11 solo albums later, Ben is heading back to Australia to catch up with his old fans. The star will be performing at a number of different locations across Australia, however our attention is definitely set on the stage performance and intimate songwriting session that Ben will be hosting as part of Bleach* festival this month. Those people who are lucky enough to hold tickets for the songwriting event will have the opportunity to sit down, have some nibbles and a drink and jam out with Ben Lee… Now we think that’s pretty cool because, from what we’ve gathered, Ben is a pretty cool guy.
Catch Ben Lee at one of his three Bleach* appearances:
* March 19 (3pm): An Afternoon with Ben Lee at QT Gold Coast. Tickets are $45 and include welcome drinks and canapés. Tickets via www.bleachfestival.com.au
* March 20 (10am): Songwriting with Ben Lee at Helensvale Community and Cultural Centre.
* March 20 (1.30pm): ‘Bleach* at Burleigh’ free live concert at The Point, Goodwin Terrace, Burleigh Heads. Concert features Ben Lee, Sahara Beck, We All Want To, Black Rabbit George.
5 wacky things that you may not know about Ben Lee, but the Internet does:
- Ben was nominated as a candidate for the Sexiest Vegetarian of the Year in 2008
- Ben does live livingroom performances at people’s homes on demand
- Ben was the creator of a music label called ‘Ten Fingers’
- Ben guest featured as a mentor on The Voice in 2013
- Ben and his wife Ione have a 7-year-old daughter named Goldie
- Ben is currently working on five different albums, which are all aimed at kids.
Words // Laura Markwort