Ben Jelen

Last updated

Ben Jelen
Ben Jelen.png
Background information
Born (1979-07-08) 8 July 1979 (age 39)
Edinburgh, Scotland
OriginNew York City, United States
GenresPop, pop rock
Occupation(s)Singer-songwriter, musician
InstrumentsVocals, guitar, piano, violin
Years active2004–present
LabelsMaverick (2003–2004)
Fearless Management (2004–2005)
Custard (2006–present)
Associated acts Linda Perry, Tori Amos, Joseph Janus, Under the Elephant, Bigelf
Website benjelen.com

Ben Jelen (born Benjamin Ivan Jelen; 8 July 1979 in Edinburgh, Scotland) is a Scottish-born American former singer-songwriter who plays the piano, violin, and guitar. He has lived in Scotland, England, Texas, New Jersey and New York. His career has been characterized by near-stardom, with his debut album, Give It All Away peaking at No. 113 on the Billboard 200 list. As of 2011, he is on indefinite hiatus from his solo career and is working with a new band, along with former Deuce Project member Josh McMillan known as Under The Elephant .

Edinburgh City and council area in Scotland

Edinburgh is the capital city of Scotland and one of its 32 council areas. Historically part of the county of Midlothian, it is located in Lothian on the Firth of Forth's southern shore.

Scotland Country in Europe, part of the United Kingdom

Scotland is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. Sharing a border with England to the southeast, Scotland is otherwise surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean to the north and west, by the North Sea to the northeast and by the Irish Sea to the south. In addition to the mainland, situated on the northern third of the island of Great Britain, Scotland has over 790 islands, including the Northern Isles and the Hebrides.

Scottish people ethnic inhabitants of Scotland

The Scottish people or Scots, are a nation and ethnic group native to Scotland. Historically, they emerged from an amalgamation of two Celtic-speaking peoples, the Picts and Gaels, who founded the Kingdom of Scotland in the 9th century. Later, the neighbouring Celtic-speaking Cumbrians, as well as Germanic-speaking Anglo-Saxons and Norse, were incorporated into the Scottish nation.

Contents

Early life

Jelen attended high school in San Antonio, Texas briefly, as a freshman at Northside Health Careers High School. He completed high school at Princeton High School in Princeton, New Jersey and graduated from Rutgers University with a degree in biology. After that, he moved to New York City to work as a producer and sound engineer at a local recording studio. [1]

Northside Health Careers High School

Northside Health Careers High School (HCHS) is a magnet school in San Antonio's Northside Independent School District for students that are interested in pursuing a career in the health professions. HCHS attracts students from school districts all across Bexar County and some from as far as Hondo, Texas.

Princeton High School (New Jersey) public high school in Princeton, New Jersey, United States

Princeton High School (PHS) is a four-year comprehensive public high school in Princeton, New Jersey, United States, operating as part of the Princeton Public Schools district, which serves all public school students in Princeton. Students from Cranbury Township attend PHS as part of a sending/receiving relationship with the Cranbury School District. The school has been accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Secondary Schools since 1932.

Princeton, New Jersey Borough in New Jersey, United States

Princeton is a municipality with a borough form of government in Mercer County, New Jersey, United States, that was established in its current form on January 1, 2013, through the consolidation of the Borough of Princeton and Princeton Township. As of the 2010 United States Census, the municipality's population was 28,572, reflecting the former township's population of 16,265, along with the 12,307 in the former borough.

Music career

2004: Give It All Away

Jelen was discovered by Joseph Janus of Fearless Management, who originally wanted to sign him as a model. Instead, Jelen handed him a demo, and shortly thereafter, he was signed to a label and released his debut album Give It All Away in May 2004, promoted by appearances on TRL, AOL Breakers and Rock the Vote. [2] [3] [4] The album also debuted at No. 13 on the Top Internet Albums chart, [5] No. 120 on the Billboard Comprehensive Albums chart [6] and No. 113 on the Billboard 200 albums chart in the United States, [7] making it eligible for the Top Heatseekers chart, a chart of artists who have never entered the top 100 of the Billboard 200. The album debuted at No. 1 on the Top Heatseekers chart. [8]

Fearless Management is a New York City-based music management company founded in 2003 by Joseph Janus, the acting President and Chief Executive Officer.

The Billboard 200 is a record chart ranking the 200 most popular music albums and EPs in the United States. It is published weekly by Billboard magazine. It is frequently used to convey the popularity of an artist or groups of artists. Often, a recording act will be remembered by its "number ones", those of their albums that outperformed all others during at least one week. The chart grew from a weekly top 10 list in 1956 to become a top 200 in May 1967, and acquired its present title in March 1992. Its previous names include the Billboard Top LPs (1961–72), Billboard Top LPs & Tape (1972–84), Billboard Top 200 Albums (1984–85) and Billboard Top Pop Albums.

Top Heatseekers are "Breaking and Entering" music charts issued weekly by Billboard magazine. The Heatseekers Albums and the Heatseekers Songs charts were introduced by Billboard in 1991 with the purpose of highlighting the sales by new and developing musical recording artists. Albums and songs appearing on Top Heatseekers may also concurrently appear on the Billboard 200 or Billboard Hot 100.

Debut single "Come On" was a hit, reaching the MTV top 20. It also debuted at No. 58 on the Hot Singles Sales chart. [9] Apart from "Give It All Away" being included as a B-side to the "Come On" single, no other track from the album was released as a single.

2005–2006: Independent period

Following his debut album, Jelen left Maverick Records and independently released the EP Rejected through Fearless Management Records in 2005. He wrote and recorded a song for a compilation album for Tori Amos' RAINN organization [10] and joined the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and Wildlife Works. Jelen also appeared on the compilation album Breaking for the Holidays in 2006 with his self-produced cover of Joni Mitchell's "River" through Breaking Records. [11]

Extended play musical recording longer than a single, but shorter than a full album

An extended play record, often referred to as an EP, is a musical recording that contains more tracks than a single, but is usually unqualified as an album or LP. EPs generally contain a minimum of four tracks and maximum of six tracks, and are considered "less expensive and time-consuming" for an artist to produce than an album. An EP originally referred to specific types of vinyl records other than 78 rpm standard play (SP) and LP, but it is now applied to mid-length CDs and downloads as well.

<i>Rejected</i> (EP) extended play by Ben Jelen

Rejected is an independently released EP by American singer Ben Jelen. The EP failed to appear on any charts in the U.S. and, apart from the recordings released as part of his appearance on Sessions@AOL, was the only material released by Jelen after his departure from Maverick Records until he signed to Custard Records and released his subsequent album, Ex-Sensitive. The album is still available for download on iTunes.

Tori Amos American singer-songwriter and pianist

Tori Amos is an American singer-songwriter and pianist. She is a classically trained musician with a mezzo-soprano vocal range. Having already begun composing instrumental pieces on piano, Amos won a full scholarship to the Peabody Institute at Johns Hopkins University at the age of five, the youngest person ever to have been admitted. She was expelled at the age of 11 for what Rolling Stone described as "musical insubordination." Amos was the lead singer of the short-lived 1980s pop group Y Kant Tori Read before achieving her breakthrough as a solo artist in the early 1990s. Her songs focus on a broad range of topics, including sexuality, feminism, politics, and religion.

2007: Custard Records deal and Ex-Sensitive

Jelen performed at the 2007 South by Southwest (SXSW) conference and music festival in Austin, Texas, in a lineup that also included Taylor Hicks, Amy Winehouse, Tom Morello, Mika, Martina Topley Bird, The Fratellis, Bloc Party, Paolo Nutini, Rodrigo y Gabriela, Mogwai and Spoon. [12]

South by Southwest is an annual conglomerate of film, interactive media, and music festivals and conferences that take place in mid-March in Austin, Texas, United States. It began in 1987, and has continued to grow in both scope and size every year. In 2017, the conference lasted for 10 days with SXSW interactive lasting for five days, music for seven days and film running concurrently for nine days.

Taylor Hicks American musician

Taylor Reuben Hicks is an American singer who won the fifth season of American Idol. Hicks got his start as a professional musician in his late teens and performed around the Southeastern United States for well over the span of a decade, during which he also released two independent albums. Upon winning Idol, he was signed to Arista Records, under which his self-titled major label debut was released on December 12, 2006.

Amy Winehouse English singer and songwriter

Amy Jade Winehouse was an English singer and songwriter. She was known for her deep, expressive contralto vocals and her eclectic mix of musical genres, including soul, rhythm and blues, and jazz. Winehouse's debut album, Frank (2003), was a critical success in the UK and was nominated for the Mercury Prize. Her follow-up album, Back to Black (2006), led to five 2008 Grammy Awards, tying the then record for the most wins by a female artist in a single night, and made her the first British woman to win five Grammys, including three of the General Field "Big Four" Grammy Awards: Best New Artist, Record of the Year and Song of the Year.

Jelen's second full-length album, Ex-Sensitive , was released on 17 July 2007. The album, formerly titled East [13] and Pulse, [14] was produced by Linda Perry and mixed by Bill Bottrell.

2009 – Under The Elephant

Jelen has placed his solo career on hold to focus on a new group Under The Elephant. The band consists of Jelen, Josh McMillan, Lisa McMillan, Tina Mathieu and James Darwin "Jimmy" Stull. The group is, as of 1 March 2010, unsigned. [15]

Personal life

Jelen met model Fern Palmer in a New York City night club on 6 January 2004. The couple married on 28 June 2009 in a private garden wedding in Palmer's hometown of Cleveland, Georgia. Jelen and Palmer have one child together: a daughter named Tallulah Rose Jelen born in 2013. In November of 2018, Jelen completed a Ph.D program in Environmental Science at Rutgers University, successfully defending his dissertation titled, "The Evolution of Microbial Electronic Transfer on Earth." <https://eoas.rutgers.edu/event/environmental-science-phd-defense-benjamin-ivan-kelen-the-evolution-of-microbial-electron-transfer-on-earth/>

Television and film

Jelen's music has been featured on the TV shows One Tree Hill, Smallville and Las Vegas, and was used to promote the Academy Award-nominated Finding Neverland starring Johnny Depp and Kate Winslet. "Come On" also features in the film Love Wrecked with Amanda Bynes and in 2007, the instrumental version of "Come On" was featured in a trailer for The Bucket List . His song, Where Do We Go also appeared in the film Fired Up. [16] In 2013, Jelen's single "Come On" was used in promotions for the film Monsters University.

Jelen, a graduate of Princeton High School, also guest starred on the Princeton-set television show House as a doctor applying for a fellowship in the episode "Kids".

Discography

Albums

Digital-only albums

Singles

Other contributions

  1. "Come On" on the compilation "CG Vibes: Music That Gives Back", available for five months in 2004 and supplied free with The Corrs' Borrowed Heaven , Toby Lightman's Little Things , Brandy's Afrodisiac and his own Give It All Away [18]
  2. "Truth" on the compilation "For the Next X: A Benefit CD for RAINN" (2004) [10]
  3. "Talking About A Revolution" (cover of Tracy Chapman's song of the same name) on the Russell Simmons/Babyface compilation Wake Up Everybody (2004)
  4. "Forever in Our Hearts" (playing keyboards and violin), a single for tsunami relief (2005) [19]
  5. "River" (cover of the Joni Mitchell song of the same name) on the compilation Breaking for the Holidays (2006)
  6. "Woman" (cover of John Lennon's song of the same name) on Instant Karma: The Amnesty International Campaign to Save Darfur (2007)

Related Research Articles

Trust Company is an American alternative metal band from Prattville, Alabama, United States.

Lifehouse (band) American rock band

Lifehouse is an American rock band from Los Angeles comprising Jason Wade, Rick Woolstenhulme Jr. and Bryce Soderberg. The band came to mainstream prominence in 2001 with the hit single "Hanging by a Moment" from their debut studio album No Name Face. The song was number one for three weeks on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart and peaked at number 2 on the Billboard Hot 100 charts, and the single won a Billboard Music Award for Hot 100 Single of the Year, having spent twenty weeks in the top 10 and more than a year on the charts.

<i>Ben</i> (Michael Jackson album) 1972 studio album by Michael Jackson

Ben is the second studio album by Michael Jackson, released by Motown Records on August 4, 1972, while Jackson was still a member of The Jackson 5. The album received mixed reviews from contemporary music critics. Ben was more successful on the music charts than Jackson's previous studio album, having charted within the top ten on the Billboard 200. Internationally, the album was less successful, peaking at  No. 12 in Canada, while charting within the top 200 positions in Australia and France.

The Fray band

The Fray is an American rock band from Denver, Colorado. Formed in 2002 by schoolmates Isaac Slade and Joe King, they achieved success with the release of their debut album, How to Save a Life in 2005, which was certified double platinum by the RIAA and platinum in Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the UK. The Fray achieved national success with their first single, "Over My Head ", which became a top ten hit in the United States. The release of their second single, "How to Save a Life", brought the band worldwide fame. The song charted in the top three of the Billboard Hot 100 and was a top 5 single in Australia, Canada, Ireland, Italy, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom.

Silent All These Years original song written and composed by Tori Amos

"Silent All These Years" is a song by American singer-songwriter and musician Tori Amos. It was released as the second single from her debut studio album Little Earthquakes. It was originally released in November 1991 in the UK by EastWest Records. It was released in North America in April 1992 by Atlantic Records and was later used to promote awareness of the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN). In the UK the single was re-released on August 10, 1992.

Knowing Me, Knowing You 1976 ABBA song

"Knowing Me, Knowing You" is a hit single recorded by Swedish pop group ABBA. The song was written by Benny Andersson, Björn Ulvaeus and Stig Anderson, with Anni-Frid Lyngstad singing the lead vocals. During recording sessions, it had the working titles of "Ring It In" and "Number 1, Number 1". The song is featured on the group's album Arrival, and also on the compilation Gold: Greatest Hits.

"Come Go with Me" is a song written by C. E. Quick, an original member of the American doo-wop vocal group The Del-Vikings. The song was originally recorded by The Del-Vikings in 1956 and was released on Fee Bee Records. Norman Wright was the lead vocalist on this song. When the group signed with Dot Records in 1957, the song became a hit, peaking at #4 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and becoming the group's highest-charting song. The song was later featured in the films American Graffiti (1973), Diner (1982), Stand by Me (1986), Joe Versus the Volcano (1990), and Set It Up (2018).

Sometimes When We Touch 1977 Dan Hill song

"Sometimes When We Touch" is a 1977 ballad written by Dan Hill (lyrics) and Barry Mann (music) on the album Longer Fuse and also released that year as a single. It was Hill's biggest hit, peaking at #3 on the United States Billboard Hot 100 and #10 on the Adult Contemporary chart. Musicians included Bobby Ogdin (piano), Larrie Londin (drums), Bob Mann (guitar), Don Potter (guitar), Tom Szczesniak (bass). The record was produced by Fred Mollin and Matthew McCauley, recorded at Manta Sound, Toronto.

Until You Come Back to Me (Thats What Im Gonna Do) 1973 song composed by Stevie Wonder performed by Aretha Franklin

"Until You Come Back to Me " is a song written by Morris Broadnax, Clarence Paul, and Stevie Wonder. The song was originally recorded by Stevie Wonder in 1967, but his version was not released as a single and did not appear on an album until 1977's anthology Looking Back. The most well-known version of this song is the 1973 release by Aretha Franklin, who had a million-selling top 10 hit on Billboard charts. The song reached no. 1 on the R&B chart and no. 3 on the Hot 100 chart in 1974. It became an RIAA gold record.

I Will Follow You into the Dark single by Death Cab for Cutie

"I Will Follow You into the Dark" is a song by indie rock band Death Cab for Cutie, the third single from their fifth album Plans, released on August 30, 2005.

This Guys in Love with You 1968 single by Herb Alpert

"This Guy's in Love with You" is a song written by Burt Bacharach and Hal David, and recorded by Herb Alpert. Although known primarily for his trumpet playing as the leader of the Tijuana Brass, Alpert sang lead vocals on this solo recording, arranged by Bacharach.

<i>Me and You</i> (Kenny Chesney album) 1996 studio album by Kenny Chesney

Me and You is the third studio album by country music singer Kenny Chesney. It was released in 1996 via BNA Records. Although its lead-off single "Back in My Arms Again" failed to make Top 40, the album's title track and "When I Close My Eyes" both reached number 2 on the U.S. Billboard Hot Country Singles & Tracks charts in 1996. The title track was reprised from Chesney's previous album. "Back Where I Come From" is a cover of Mac McAnally's 1990 single from his album Simple Life, while "When I Close My Eyes" had been recorded by Restless Heart lead singer Larry Stewart on his 1993 debut album Down the Road, and by Keith Palmer before that. "It's Never Easy To Say Goodbye" had been recorded by singer Wynonna Judd on her eponymous debut album.

Donna (Ritchie Valens song) song of Ritchie Valens

"Donna" is a song written by Ritchie Valens, featuring the 50s progression. The song was released in 1958 on Del-Fi Records. It was Valens' highest-charting single reaching No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart the following year. It was written as a tribute to his high school sweetheart Donna Ludwig.

<i>Give It All Away</i> (Ben Jelen album) album by Ben Jelen

Give It All Away is the debut album by Scottish-American singer/songwriter Ben Jelen, released in 2004 via Maverick Records.

Talkin bout a Revolution 1988 single by Tracy Chapman

"Talkin' 'bout a Revolution" is the second single from singer-songwriter Tracy Chapman's self-titled debut album. The politically aware song failed to replicate the success of its predecessor, "Fast Car", and peaked at #75 in the United States. However, it also managed to chart on four other charts maintained by Billboard and reached the top forty in two of them.

Ill Be Your Baby Tonight song by Bob Dylan

"I'll Be Your Baby Tonight" is a 1967 song by Bob Dylan first released on John Wesley Harding. It features Pete Drake on pedal steel guitar.

<i>Kris Allen</i> (album) 2009 studio album by Kris Allen

Kris Allen is the major-label album debut from American Idol eighth season winner Kris Allen. The album was released on November 17, 2009, through Jive Records.

<i>Teenage Dream</i> (Katy Perry album) 2010 studio album by Katy Perry

Teenage Dream is the third studio album by American singer Katy Perry. It was released on August 24, 2010, through Capitol Records. Musically, Teenage Dream contains songs in the genres of pop, with influences of disco, electronic, funk, house, gothic rock, Hi-NRG, and hip hop laced throughout the album. Lyrically, it revolves around young love, partying, self-empowerment, and personal growth. Perry co-wrote every song on the album, and also worked with a number of producers and writers, including Dr. Luke, Max Martin, Benny Blanco, Tricky Stewart, StarGate, Greg Kurstin, Bonnie McKee and Ester Dean.

The One That Got Away (Katy Perry song) song by Katy Perry

"The One That Got Away" is a song by American singer Katy Perry for her third studio album, Teenage Dream (2010). The song was produced by Dr. Luke and Max Martin, both of whom also co-wrote the song with Perry. The song is a mid-tempo pop ballad about a lost love. It features references to the rock band Radiohead as well as the relationship of Johnny Cash and June Carter Cash to express the strength of the relationship. The song was released in October 2011 by Capitol Records as the album's sixth single.

Betty Who Australian singer-songwriter

Jessica Anne Newham, known by her stage name Betty Who, is an Australian singer and songwriter. After independently releasing her debut single "Somebody Loves You" (2012) and her debut extended play The Movement (2013), she signed with RCA Records and later released her debut studio album Take Me When You Go (2014). Her second studio album The Valley (2017) saw the commercial success of her cover of "I Love You Always Forever", which peaked inside the top ten in Australia and reached the top of the Billboard Dance Club Songs chart in the United States.

References

  1. Music Emissions interview
  2. Breaking and Entering: Ben Jelen
  3. Billboard Bits: Rock The Vote, Mellencamp, Linkin Park
  4. Billboard Bits: 'Por Vida,' Loeb/Mitchell, AOL Breakers
  5. Chart positions by Billboard.com
  6. Chart positions by Billboard.com
  7. Chart positions by Billboard.com
  8. Billboard.com chart positions
  9. Billboard.com chart positions
  10. 1 2 Artists Shower Tracks on RAINN Benefit
  11. Breaking Records website
  12. SXSW Finally Confirms First Round of Artists
  13. Jelen Breaks Free With Linda Perry
  14. Ben Jelen Inks With Perry's Custard Label
  15. Myspace.com
  16. https://www.imdb.com/name/nm1596073/
  17. Single listing at Billboard.com
  18. CoverGirl Launching Record Label
  19. 'Forever' Unites Artists For Tsunami Relief