Ben Smith Drummer Bio
Ben Smith has an enjoyed an extensive career as a drummer musician providing drumbeats, drum tracks and drumming performances that include appearances with the musical band Heart on the Jay Leno Tonight Show, The Ellen Show, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon and on Conan.
Ben recorded in September 2006 for Ann Wilson's solo record "Hope and Glory", featuring performances by Sir Elton John, Alison Krauss, Shawn Colvin, Rufus Wainwright, KD Lang, Gretchen Wilson, Nancy Wilson, and others, produced by Ben Mink.
He also performed on drums with composer Nancy Wilson and Mike McCready of Pearl Jam for the Cameron Crowe film "Vanilla Sky" starring Tom Cruise, Cameron Diaz and Penelope Cruz, including the song "I Fall Apart", sung by Cameron Diaz.
Ben recorded drums for Cameron Crowe's film "Elizabethtown" and also co-wrote a song during the session with Mike Inez and the film's composer Nancy Wilson. Other film work includes "Smoke Signals", "Around the Fire", "Skins" and "Mod Squad", all with composer BC Smith, The Great Buck Howard for composer Blake Neely, and two films with composer Phil Marshall, HIghwater and Dark Water.
Ben also recorded drums for the Cameron Crowe film (and soundtrack) "Almost Famous", with Nancy Wilson composing and performing, featuring Peter Frampton and Mike McCready of Pearl Jam, which included the songs by the band "Stillwater". The soundtrack for this film won the Grammy award for Best Soundtrack at the Grammys 2001, and the film took the Oscar for Best Screenplay.
Ben Smith Drummer & The Band Heart
Ben began performing with Heart in '96, including performances on "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno", the "Ann Wilson of Heart" tour '96, the "VH-1 Fairway to Heaven" concert '96, and the "Ann Wilson of Heart" concert tour '98, as well as the '02 "Summer of Love" US tour with Heart, which included Ann and Nancy Wilson, Mike Inez on bass, Scott Olson on guitar and Tom Kellock on keys. Ben also performed with Ann and Nancy Wilson in 1994, with their band Lovemongers including founding members Frank Cox and Sue Ennis for benefit shows for Earth Day, and the Home Alive CD release. Lovemongers then recorded "Whirligig", which was followed up with a tour in '97. Performing on that tour was Elaine Summers, who Ben also played with. In 1998 Ben recorded with Lovemongers on the holiday album "Heart Presents A Lovemonger's Christmas".
Recorded at the last stop on their 2002 tour, "Alive in Seattle" documents an impeccable performance by the band highlighting their biggest hits. In 2003, Heart continued to build momentum, with Gilby Clarke on Guitar and Darian Sahanaja on keys, this group did the Leno show and filled US venues.
2004 saw Heart touring again, with Craig Bartock on guitar and Debbie Shair on keys, and it was this combination of people who recorded a new release from the band, "Jupiter's Darling", which quickly became a critic and fan favorite. In support of this release the band performed on Conan, the Today Show, and some dates in Europe, and another packed US tour. This line-up toured extensively and recorded in 2005 and 2006.
In 2007 Heart continued to be active, with the Dreamboat Annie Concert for Direct TV in April, VH 1 Rock Honors television performance in May (which featured Heart along with ZZ Top, Ozzy Osbourne and Genesis, with contributing performances by Alice in Chains, Queens of the Stone Age, and others); tv and radio on September and October which featured A&E's Private Sessions, a show for XM Radio, and many concert dates which led the band to Canada, and all over the US thru Nov.
In 2008, Heart undertook a full US tour, with 50 dates performing with Journey and Cheap Trick as well as many other shows, and added Kristian Attard to the live band on bass, as Ric Markmann continued his writing and production career in Los Angeles. In the past three years, Heart has filled houses, touring Canada this past spring, and is on a tour w/Def Leppard around the U.S. and Australia after releasing Red Velvet Car in August 2010. The band is also on schedule to record some great new songs, for a release in 2012.
Other Musicians That Ben Has Drummed With
Ben has performed live musical events and/or recorded with: Heart, Ann and Nancy Wilson, Buddahead, Taj Mahal, Cyndi Lauper, Lovemongers, Pete Droge, Don Gilmore, Tracy Nelson, Boy Meets Girl, Deniece Williams, Peter Frampton, P.F. Sloan (legendary producer and writer of "Eve of Destruction" and "Secret Agent Man"), Cornelius Bumpus, Danny O'Keefe, Sugar Pie de Santos, jazz artists Nancy Wilson, Ernestine Anderson and Glenn Alexander, Phoebe Snow, Tingstad and Rumbel, The Songcatchers featuring Charles Neville, Kenny G, Mia Vermillion, Kate Borkowski, Sue Pelino and banjo god Danny Barnes.
Other recording work Ben has done include projects drumming for Buddahead, Subminute Radio and Shoveljerk, all for producer Don Gilmore; various recordings for producer/writer Pete Droge; work with Peter Himmelman; shows and/or recordings w/Glenn Alexander, Tracy Nelson, Shannon Rubicam and George Merrill, producer Thom Bell, producer Jim Bredouw, Danny O'Keefe, Danny Barnes, various projects for producer Mark Wolfson, PJ Newman, Christine Evans, Tingstad Rumbel, Phoebe Snow, Mark Pender, producers Tom Hall, Eric Tingstad, Bill Gibson and Daniel Christopherson, jazz vocalists Ernestine Anderson and Nancy Wilson, and many amazing, hard working musicians world wide.