Ben holds a BM in Music Education (PreK-12 Instrumental) from Longwood University and an MM in Music Education from Virginia Commonwealth University. While he majored in clarinet and performs primarily on bass outside of the concert band world, Ben is a multi-instrumentalist, performing with numerous ensembles on a number of different instruments. Past credits include the Mid-Atlantic Wind Symphony (principal clarinet, bass clarinet), Aaron Noë All-Stars (electric and upright bass), Christian Youth Theater (electric and upright bass), Fredericksburg Academy Players (bass, drumset, guitar, auxiliary percussion), and the Rappahannock Pops Orchestra (clarinet, bass clarinet, timpani/aux. percussion).
Ben has a wide variety of educational experience. His busy career so far has included conducting top level concert bands, jazz ensembles, orchestras, pit orchestras, and chamber groups during his tenure in public and private schools and camps in Virginia and Wisconsin. Ben is also an in-demand clinician, presenting clinics and performances for Gerald Veasley’s Bass Bootcamp, The Virginia Bass Forum, and various schools and lesson programs throughout the Mid-Atlantic region and southeast Wisconsin. Ben maintains a small but thriving private studio of guitar, bass, clarinet, and theory students in Milwaukee and via Skype.
Since 2005, Ben has developed a reputation as a first-call jazz, blues, fusion, and rock bassist. He has shared the stage with the late great tenor saxophonist James Moody, Grammy Award-Winning alto saxophonist Eric Marienthal, John DeSalme (tenor sax, US Army Blues), and Duffy Jackson (drums). He has also opened for Jimmie's Chicken Shack, Edwin McCain Band, and Chase Rice. Ben has been an integral member of bands playing events ranging from inaugural balls to state fairs to Wisconsin’s Summerfest Music Festival.