Name: Paul Benjaman Band
Members: Paul Benjaman (guitar, vocals), Jesse Aycock (steel guitar, guitar), Jeff Newsome (electric piano), Andrew Bones (drums), Bo Hallford (electric bass)
From: Tulsa, OK
Genre: Tulsa Sound, Bebop, Western Swing, Modern Funk
RIYL: JJ Cale, Wilco, Warren Haynes
Record Label: Horton Records
Links: Webpage / Facebook / Twitter / iTunes / Spotify



PRESS PHOTOS (credit: Phil Clarkin)


01 Sneaker
02 Estoy Loco
03 Ball and Chain
04 Auburn Plaid
05 Your Music
06 Showdown State
07 Ringside
08 Shake Your Tree
09 Monticello Honeymoon
10 Lortab Mama
11 El Matador
12 Black Magic Country

“It was reactionary to current trends,” Paul Benjaman says of his approach to Sneaker, the sophomore album from his Paul Benjaman Band, due out on October 30th from Horton Records. “I’d been attending quite a few singer-songwriter events, because that’s a lot of what’s going on now in roots music, and on one occasion in particular, I caught myself being bored to death, to the point of it being pivotal to my musical mission,” Benjaman reveals. “The very next day, I woke up and cut the 17 tracks we had recorded for the album down to the dozen that were designed to get people moving.”

Sneaker offers Paul Benjaman Band’s personal stamp on the elusive “Tulsa Sound”, a period of the 70’s in which Tulsa, Oklahoma musicians were backing many a rock star, and a specific crossroads of American music was created by visionaries like J.J. Cale and Leon Russell. Paul Benjaman Band cut their new tracks to tape at Fellowship Hall Sound in Little Rock, Arkansas, and more than a little of the area’s blues and R&B roots seeped into the sessions. The wide variety of tracks find their cohesiveness by letting the groove rule all, and guitarists Jesse Aycock (also a member of Hard Working Americans) and Paul Benjaman color each tune with a myriad of vintage instruments and amps to create an album that is timeless yet from a specific place on the musical map — the Tulsa Sound.

A former student of Junior Brown, guitar is at the forefront of his groove-based sound. Benjaman plays with a wide vocabulary that has scored him a spot as touring sideman for the T-Bone Burnett-produced Secret Sisters, with whom he played on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon in August of 2014 and on a nationwide tour supporting Nickel Creek. Paul Benjaman Band has toured relentlessly around the Midwest, Rocky Mountain and Southwest regions, appearing at SXSW multiple times and recently performing at Cain’s Ballroom (1800 capacity) with John Fullbright and Samantha Crain. A festival favorite — including summer slots at the Peacemaker Music Fest in Ft. Smith supporting Lucero, Jason Isbell and others, and headlining the Oklahoma Stage at Center of the Universe Festival in Tulsa — the band has played with Sonny Landreth, Heartless Bastards, Lucinda Williams, Buffalo Killers, Cornmeal, Split Lip Rayfield, and Todd Clouser’s A Love Electric, among many others.

Sneaker, which follows 2010’s debut album Something, will be out on Horton Records on October 30th, available on CD, vinyl and digital formats. The album was recorded and mixed by Jason Weinheimer at Fellowship Hall Sound, and mastered by UE Nastasi at Sterling Sound. Sneaker is highly recommended for fans of JJ Cale, Wilco, and Warren Haynes. “The whole album ended up carrying a narrative of the night life — not as a lucid concept, but enough to go on that you can fill out the particulars and connect to it in your own way,” says Benjaman. “My favorite songwriting quote is from Springsteen: ‘I’ve never seen a coffee colored Cadillac, but thanks to Chuck Berry I know exactly what one looks like.’” Benjaman continues, “That’s my favorite approach to songs — reporting about things that the listener has never seen, but they know what I’m talking about through their own emotions from past experiences.”