BEN MATTHEWS

Pianist. Composer. Bandleader.

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Welcome

Hello and welcome to the official website of Perth-based pianist, composer and bandleader Ben Matthews! This is the place to be if you would like to learn a little about myself, perhaps organise some live music for a function,  listen to some of my compositions, check out some photos, or just to get in touch.  I will also keep this space updated with any exciting music-related news.

To hear my original works for piano or various jazz ensembles, head to the “Compositions” section.  For corporate and wedding jazz band ensembles, have a listen at the “Band Hire” section.  Enjoy your stay!

-Ben

News

:: Rebel Cops Game Soundtrack Released
Earlier this year (2019) I was involved with writing and recording of the soundrack to Weappy / ThQ Nordic’s release Rebel Cops. You can listen to the full soundtrack here!

:: WAM Nomination for Best Keys/Synth Player
I found out a few days ago that I have been nominated for a WAM 2019 award in the Best Keys/Synth category! You can read more about it here.

:: Soulmination Single Released
A few weeks ago I was helping to record some rhodes and synth parts to Perth-based Neosoul group Soulmination’s latest single Heads In The Sand which has just been released!

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About

 

Biography

After nearly a decade performing as both a sideman and bandleader with some of Australia’s most illustrious musicians, jazz pianist and contemporary keyboardist Ben Matthews turned his focus to composition in late 2015. In 2016, he wrote and recorded the following projects: an original soundtrack to THQ Nordic’s game ‘This Is The Police’; an original jazz/instrumental neo-soul double-CD release, ‘LiveWyre’; a collaborative E.P. of contemporary ballads with vocalist Edwina Masson entitled ‘An Open Letter of Imperfections’; a seven track, entirely improvised solo piano album, ‘My Story’; music for the short film ‘Lightbulb’; and two improvised solo piano singles, ‘Indulge in a Daydream’ and ‘Uncertain Times’. Over the years, three of Ben’s compositions have been nominated for Western Australian Music (WAM) Song of the Year awards (2011, 2015, 2016).

Current Direction

My current aspiration is to create honest and emotional music that balances creativity and accessibility.  With this in mind, I am aiming to:

-Strive for mastery as a pianist and composer through personal exploration and formal tuition from local and touring mentors.

-Develop and share my work as a solo improviser, drawing influence from modern jazz greats (such as Herbie Hancock, Chick Corea, Hiromi Uehara and Keith Jarrett), and filmcomposers (such as John Williams, Joe Hisaishi, Ryuichi Sakamoto).

-Build a portfolio of compositions and arrangements for performance and publishing by blending stylistic qualities from the jazz, latin, r’n’b, film score, ambient and fusion genres in the hopes to produce an original, refined and unique style of music.

Compositions

 



Rebel Cops

Game Soundtrack


In 2019 I was involved in the writing and recording of the soundtrack to ThQ Nordic / Weappy’s game Rebel Cops along side Game/Anime composer Kevin Penkin. The soundtrack is curated by Boss Battle Records and recorded, mixed and mastered by Matthew Templeman. Learn more…



This Too Shall Pass

Solo Piano Album


Standalone stories of melancholia and gentle triumphs, ‘This Too Shall Pass’ is a collection of deeply expressive improvisations at the piano. The album is a chronicle of contemplation, of despair, rage, hope, frustration, love, and resolve. The pieces from This Too Shall Pass are entirely improvised, fleeting moments and moods now preserved. Learn more…



This Is The Police 2

Game Soundtrack


In early 2018 I flew to Norway to write and record a game soundtrack comprising of Nordic-inspired world music, jazz and fusion. The soundtrack ThQ Nordic / Weappy’s title This Is The Police 2 includes collaborations with composer Kevin Penkin, producer Jia Lih, guest vocalists Holli Scott and Elvira Björkman, and features a number of Nordic folk instruments – The Bukkehorn (performed by Karl Seglem), the Langeleik (performed by Robert Løkketangen) and the Hardenge Fiddle and Octave Violin (performed by Rasmus Kjorstad). It is one of the most diverse, exciting and ambitious projects I have had the honour of working on. I wrote and recorded tracks 1-15, 20, 21 and helped to arrange 28. Learn more…



Memoir

Solo Piano Album


The pieces from Memoir are entirely improvised, fleeting moments and moods now preserved. They have not been edited in any way, and are the first and only take and attempt of each piece. May these moments bring you warmth, calm and stillness as you peregrinate through your day-to-day.
The music in this album is inspired by pianists composers Nobuo Uematsu (Final Fantasy), Herbie Hancock, Ludovico Einaudi, Joe Hisaishi (Studio Ghibli) and Denny Zeitlin. Learn more…



LiveWyre

Jazz-Funk-R’n’B Fusion


LiveWyre is an original blend of cinematic, groove, neo-soul, jazz, ambient and fusion sounds. Much of the music draws influence of musicians who blend genres in their own writing style; the compositional sounds of jazz masters like Esperanza Spalding, Hiromi Uehara, Robert Glasper (etc) are alluded to throughout the music of the LiveWyre project. This project was crowdfunded in July/August of 2016 by 138 backers. Learn more…



An Open Letter of Imperfections

Collaborative E.P.

This album was filmed live. Check out the videos here!

An Open Letter of Imperfections is a collaboration between powerhouse pop/soul/r’n’b singer EDDE (Edwina Masson) and jazz pianist Ben Matthews. Breaking away from her high-energy, huge-sound projects, Edwina sought to create music that would evoke a deep vulnerability, exposing yet-to-be-shared personal experiences through her music. Upon inviting Ben to join her in the journey, the pair would explore together different expressions of these heartfelt stories, refining them into the songs that are presented in this album. Learn more…

 


This Is The Police

Game Soundtrack

In 2016 I composed and recorded 12 jazz tracks for Weappy’s PC game “This Is The Police”.  This album is heavily influenced by the jazz greats of the late 50’s and early 60’s eras; musicians like Charles Mingus, Miles Davis, Bill Evans, Art Blakey to name some prime examples.  The title theme ‘No Good’ features the voice and lyrics of Perth’s very own jazz songstress Holli Scott. You can purchase and listen to the album on their bandcamp page which can be found here.

Band Hire

Ben Matthews Ensembles

Treat your guests to some live jazz with a band tailored to suit any occasion. Ben Matthews Ensembles combines the talent of Australia’s in-demand jazz musicians to provide an atmosphere of warmth and class at private functions, weddings and corporate events. Below are some examples of some of our acts, accompanied by live recordings of each. To discuss your function needs, please get in touch with me at [email protected].

BMSolo Piano (listen/watch)

Providing ambience of a relaxing and intimate nature, Ben’s solo piano sound is a contemplative blend of jazz (Herbie Hancock, Chick Corea, Hiromi Uehara), classical (Ravel, Chopin, Ryuichi Sakamoto) and contemporary soundtrack music (Hans Zimmer, Nobuo Uematsu, Joe Hisaishi).

BMDuo Piano/Bass or Piano/Saxophone (listen)

The instrumental jazz duo or trio provides something a little louder and a little livelier, and is reminiscent of more traditional instrumental jazz music, utilising repertoire from the Great American Songbook.  Inviting a horn player (saxophone or trumpet) or a bassist to join the piano allows for music best suited to medium sized venues.

For the duo dynamic, adding the upright bass provides a deeper and warmer sound. Adding a horn is ideal for cutting through louder venues, ensuring the music is comfortably audible amongst background noise and chatter.

BMTrio Piano/Upright Bass/Drum Kit (listen)

Drawing influence from the likes of Oscar Peterson, Brad Mehldau and Bill Evans’ iconic jazz ensembles, this is most popular ensemble experience. The jazz trio format offers a versatile and dynamic sound and is suitable for any occasion or setting.

BMQuartet Piano/Upright Bass/Drum Kit/Saxophone (listen)

Creative, energetic and modern – the instrumental quartet features the engine room of the jazz trio with some extra punch from the sax’.

For all bookings and enquiries, e-mail me at [email protected].

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Press Kit

Biography

After nearly a decade performing as both a sideman and bandleader with some of Australia’s most illustrious musicians, jazz pianist and contemporary keyboardist Ben Matthews turned his focus to composition in late 2015. In 2016, he wrote and recorded the following projects: an original soundtrack to THQ Nordic’s game ‘This Is The Police’; an original jazz/instrumental neo-soul double-CD release, ‘LiveWyre’; a collaborative E.P. of contemporary ballads with vocalist Edwina Masson entitled ‘An Open Letter of Imperfections’; a seven track, entirely improvised solo piano album, ‘My Story’; music for the short film ‘Lightbulb’; and two improvised solo piano singles, ‘Indulge in a Daydream’ and ‘Uncertain Times’. Over the years, three of Ben’s compositions have been nominated for Western Australian Music (WAM) Song of the Year awards (2011, 2015, 2016). Ben’s current aspiration is to to create honest and emotional music that balances creativity and accessibility, and to extend his portfolio of compositions and arrangements by blending stylistic qualities of jazz, Latin, R&B, ambient, fusion and film music genres.

 

Photos

Tom Greble Photography:

Misc photos:

(Photographers above, left to right: Alana Mathews, Jacqueline Auty, Cameron Evans)

 

Contact

For all bookings and enquiries, please don't hesitate to get in touch!

Find me on FACEBOOK HERE and on YOUTUBE HERE.

Contact Info

ben@benmatthews.com.au

Perth, Western Australia