Far and Distant Things is British keyboardist and composer Benjamin Croft’s second album release following the critically acclaimed "10 Reasons To…". It features guest stars Randy Brecker and Allen Vizzutti (trumpet), Frank Gambale, Barry Finnerty, Mike Miller (guitar), and Chad Wackerman (drums). Joining them are Benjamin’s favourite musicians based in the UK: Andy Davies (trumpet), Gareth Lockrane (flute), Henry Thomas and Flo Moore (bass), Tristan Mailliot and Laurie Lowe (drums) as well as Helen Vollam, principal trombone of the BBC Symphony Orchestra and guitarist Carter Arrington.
Three of the eleven original compositions have been released ahead of the album – ‘Far and Distant Things’, a metaphysical look at the past and future and the inner journey of the mind, ‘S&R Video’, a track inspired by Benjamin’s favourite video rental store and ‘Brock’, which portrays a mysterious character similar in manner to Mr Hyde but neither good or bad.
“I am immensely proud of this album. A true portrait of my musical mind. My love of jazz, rock and classical are all captured,” says Benjamin. “The eleven compositions on this album represent my childhood dreams and fantasies. Utopian and dystopian, heroes and villains – all are depicted. Concepts I regarded as far and distant things.”
1. Overture - feat. Allen Vizzutti
2. Far And Distant Things - feat. Frank Gambale
4. S.A.D. (Spatial Awareness Disease) - feat. Allen Vizzutti
5. Tudor Job Agency - feat. Barry Finnerty
6. S&R Video - feat. Randy Brecker
7. The War Against Loudness - feat. Mike Miller
8. How Not To Win The Nobel Peace Prize
9. Thank You, That’s What I Wanted To Know… (Dedicated to the memory of Peter Miles)
10. St Gandalf’s - feat. Chad Wackerman
11. The Cashectomy
ALBUM CREDITS: Written and arranged by Benjamin Croft. Produced by Benjamin Croft, assistant producer Henry Thomas Benjamin Croft - Arp Odyssey, Clavinet, Fender Rhodes piano, Hammond B3/C3 organs, Minimoog Model D, Oberheim OB-X, OB-Xa, OB-8 and Xpander, Prophet 5, Roland Jupiter 4 and 8, Yamaha CS-80., grand pianos by Fazioli, Steinway and Yamaha, Randy Brecker - trumpet, Allen Vizzutti - trumpet, Andy Davies - trumpet, flugelhorn, Helen Vollam - trombone, Gareth Lockrane - flutes, Frank Gambale - guitar, Barry Finnerty - guitar, Mike Miller - guitar, Carter Arrington - guitar, Chad Wackerman - drums, Tristan Mailliot- drums, Laurie Lowe - drums, Flo Moore - bass, Henry Thomas - bass
Benjamin Croft began piano and trumpet lessons at the age of seven, later going on to study at Leeds College of Music. After graduating he completed several contracts on international cruise lines and moved to the US. During this period he toured the world twice and worked with artists as diverse as Belinda Carlisle, Leslie Garrett, The Temptations and the Platters. Benjamin relocated to London in 2012, where he became a regular performer at Ronnie Scott’s, Jazz Cafe, Soho’s Pizza Express Jazz Club, The Pheasantry among others. He has also performed in the West End Show ‘Straight From the Heart’ and on TV shows such as ‘The Voice’ and ‘Britain’s Got Talent’. He worked as a session musician, composer and arranger on several projects over the years. In 2018, he recorded on Beautiful South founder Dave Hemingway’s latest project ’Sunbirds'. In March 2019, Benjamin released his first album ‘10 Reasons To...’ on 33Jazz Records. 12 original compositions reflecting his unique style and sound; an audacious crossover between genres that seduced the press, and the public His second album, "Far and Distant Things", was recorded throughout 2020. An ambitious project featuring legendary guest musicians.
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