Bens Jazz Kit
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Bens Jazz Kit


Band Rock Funk


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Bens Jazz Kit @ Ruta Maya

Austin, Texas, USA

Austin, Texas, USA

Bens Jazz Kit @ Tractor Tavern

Seattle, Washington, USA

Seattle, Washington, USA

Bens Jazz Kit @ King Cat Theater

Seattle, Washington, USA

Seattle, Washington, USA

This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"After a long day at work I would like to go home, take off my pants, get a bucket of chicken, put on a Henry Rollins Mike Patton sex tape and listen to some Bens Jazz Kit."
Mitch Sux, -

One of the most entertaining things in the world is watching other people dance. Such an opportunity will be generously afforded by ultra-funky Seattle trio Ben's Jazz Kit. The scene will be something like the stage in A Charlie Brown Christmas. Somebody will be doing the zombie, another the penguin, and if you're lucky, a brave soul will take a stab at whatever move the curly redhead near Pig Pen has perfected. At which point you too will be dancing to the Kit's persuasive, and vaguely Primus, pulse. MARK STOCK - Willamette Weekly / Portland, OR

Funk, Rock, hip-hop, R&B, twisted together in an unnatural order that somehow works in a perfectly natural flow. This Seattle trio, Bens Jazz Kit, is comprised of Ben Reece on guitar, Jazz Turnbow on drums, and Kit Vanderjagt on bass and vocals. Get it now??? Bens Jazz Kit.

Few would attempt such an eclectic project; however Bens Jazz Kit did exactly that on their latest, Dizzy Minds. Each track is distinct from the next and brings the listener many different flavors, all the while maintaining tight musicianship. Ben Reece on guitar brings many powerful funk rhythms throughout the recording and Kit Vanderjagt is a phenomenal bass player with a distinctive voice. He has the ability to adjust his vocal styles to meet the demands of each song’s requirements. And Jazz Turnbow, (after all this is, is the connective tissue between the trio. His ability to lock in with Kit on bass as well as his command of multiple musical styles; is a big reason why the trio could undertake the challenge of Dizzy Minds.

Check out the hard driving funk on opening track, Kutter, which spontaneously combusts into multiple genres. Or Mouth w/ a Liquid Eye, where Jazz Turnbow opens with very powerful drumming and keeps the beat fat. Each track has it own personality, albeit schizophrenic. I can assure you it’s a path of insanity you’ll want to travel. I was thinking of some the musical influences I heard on Dizzy Minds, and I was reminded of the likes of Primus, Rage against the Machine, and Stan Ridgeway (back when Stewart Copeland was recording with him). Let your guard down and take Bens Jazz Kit, Dizzy Minds, out for a long ride.
- John Coia, / Boynton Beach,FL

"Man these guys from Bens Jazz Kit, kick sirius ass! Good funky, pocket sound. Made it into my rotation first time I heard them."

-Greg Fries, DJ DIY Faction 28 Sirius Satellite
- Sirius Satellite Radio

"Bens Jazz Kit aren't another jazz trio, though they wouldn't sound out of place opening for Medeski, Martin & Wood, as these guys can get into a groove and bring you along with 'em. There's also a frantic, frenetic quality to the trio as in songs like "Fertilizer", where hints of punk pioneers, The Minutemen, can be heard. Chops abound for fans of pure musicianship too."

-Abe Beeson, DJ Audioasis KEXP 90.3 Seattle - KEXP 90.3 FM Seattle

It's safe to say that Seattle's Bens Jazz Kit's "Dizzy Minds" is honestly one of the most unique albums that I have ever heard. For my liking it was a little too out there to the left of the dial, but there is a market for this kind of album. From the beginning of the album you are introduced to groove heavy beats that combine elements of electronica and funk. However, as much as these elements filter throughout the album they walk a very eclectic line from song to song with no two really sounding too much alike. Perfect examples of this are "Mouth w/ a Liquid Eye," that assults you with pounding drums and thumping bass lines, while "Damn Right" focuses a little bit more on the guitar riff and has a walking bass line running behind it. Vocally, they reminded me a lot of bands like Jamiroquai in that they feature a lot of soulfulness in the voice, but at the same time show a backbone of rock influences. This hard to describe band brings a uniquness to the table like no other acts out there right now. It's experiemental, but they pull it together to create a solid sound. If this sounds like something that could be up your alley or if you are just looking for something a bit different than anything else out there then Bens Jazz Kit is the band for you. - The Guestlist / Online Magazine

Normal Bean storms the stage again to introduce Bens Jazz Kit, a brilliant muscle funk jam. As Kit pummels a maddening melody from the bass guitar that would make Primus go home crying, Ben tore up the guitar like an obsessed madman, and Jazz pressed out a rhythm that forced everyone from their seats. The dance floor filled and this trio funked like a band twice their size. The musicians in the audience stared on in amazement as the tightness of the groove and the togetherness of the group. My ears were filled with requests to bring them back, even before they were off the stage. It was without a doubt one of the most amazing performances I had ever seen. -'sjournal / Eugene,OR

At first glance of the group Bens Jazz Kit, you expect to hear jazz classics like Savoy and Fisherman's Wharf. However, Ben Reece, Jazz Turnbow and Kit Vander-Jagt, deliver an aggressive fat pocket fusion sound. Diverse and bold, their songs are comprised of musical elements from fusion, rock, hip hop and R&B. Like the ingredients in a good recipe, they are combined and fused, song after song, in a way that is unique and high energy. Kit's hard bass lines and vocals next to Ben's wailing guitar over Jazz's hard hitting drum beats are expressive and uninhibited.

They began playing together in 2006 on a night Jazz returned from Hollywood where he was drumming for a hip hop band called Black Gravity. After six months, Bens Jazz Kit recorded their self-titled release, the pink album, and immediatlely began touring. Their second album, Dizzy Minds, was recorded four months ago at London Bridge, a local studio famous for recording some of Seattle's grunge rock legends. The difference between their first and second albums is striking. While their first album is more rooted in funk, their second is much more fusion. This music is like crack for people with short attention spans. The songs are well written musically and jump from one genre to another effortlessly, somehow making it all work. The music reflects their personalities - high energy and gregarious. They were a delight to interview. Jazz has dark hair, an athletic build, vibrant energy and a definite love of hip hop and funk. Guitarist Ben is a tall blonde with a mischievous, laid back surfer personality. Kit's blue eyes sparkle with humor and have a quiet intelligence and a love of writing.

For the purposes of this interview, I met them under a bridge in Seattle's industrial area, south of downtown. The weather was dark, foggy and drizzly. Under the bridge a dozen skaters flew up and down the cement walls of the skate park. Jazz was hitting the drums and Kit was playing bass while Ben sipped a beer and mingled with the skaters and their pitbull. After their photo shoot, which involved me climbing over piles of rubble and up the steep curved walls of the skateramp in a business suit, we went to the van for some conversation. They told me about their most recent two-and-a-half-month regional tour. All went well except for the stealing of Kit's flip flops off his feet while sleeping outside in Oakland. They are looking forward to more touring and more love in Seattle. Bens Jazz Kit's aggressive funky sound is born of eclectic fusion, which brings a lot to the table in terms of diversity and skill.

Written/Photographed by Danielle Noel Gibeson - DList Magazine / Seattle,WA

Seattle-based trio Bens Jazz Kit lists 69 "musical influences" on its Myspace page. Fewer than 10 of them are jazz musicians. listening to the band's recordings, the jazz influences are, if anything, even less evident, buried under a barrage of blistering beats and tangled inside the dizzying, sharp-edged fretwork of guitarist Ben Reece.
Listening to songs like the spacy, funky "Starbanger," or the grinding-metal thrust of "Black Plastic," one begins to wonder: What's up with the name?
"They're our real names," explains drummer Jazz Turnbow.
It's that simple, actually-and yet perfectly fitting. Incorporating the first names of Reece, Turnbow, and bassist Kit Vander Jagt, Bens Jazz Kit clearly reflects the individual personalities of these three oddball musicians. They're as apt to pump out aggressive Primus-style rap-rock (that'd be Turnbow's influence) as they are inclined to drop into a happy funk groove reminiscent of Stevie Wonder in his '70s heyday (that's Vander Jagt's passion coming through).
The result is an idiosyncratic blend of generally hard-driving but always danceable music.
"We definitely have strong jazz roots but it's not jazz music by any means," says Turnbow. "That said, whatever people want to put on us as a label, we take it 'cause it's a pretty eclectic sound."
Hear for yourself when Bens Jazz Kit plays the Top Hat tonight, July 24, at 10 p.m.

By Joe Nickell of the Missoulian
published Thursday July 24, 2008 - Missoulian / Missoula, Montana


1st LP - Bens Jazz Kit, "Nothing Else Matters", released in June of 2007 under RrraahhH Records, Seattle, WA. Hits such as "Hey Cat", "Fertilizer", "New Bike" are currently on heavy rotation @ KEXP 90.3 FM Seattle. Also, "New Bike", "Starbanger", and other songs off the debut album are currently on rotation @ DJ DIY Faction 28 Sirius Satellite

2nd LP - Bens Jazz Kit "Dizzy Minds" Released July 4th, 2008
-this album was recorded @ London Bridge Studios in Seattle, WA. Albums such as "Jar of Flies" and "Dirt" by Alice in Chains, "Ten" by Pearl Jam, the "Singles Soundtrack", Soundgarden, Temple of the Dog and many other Platinum plus albums were recorded here.
Engineered and mixed by local great Don DeVore, former owner of Ironwood Studios, who has recorded such artist as Blues Traveler, Death Cab for Cutie and many more!
"Dizzy Minds" was produced by Bens Jazz Kit and Adrian Acosta.



Bens Jazz Kit, well…the future of innovative and eclectic, yet still very accessible, energy driven sound! When witnessed,…one could be immediately swallowed by the precise and tasteful execution of such a fresh and cutting-edge style that is rapidly rising to the surface. Once in motion, this music reflects a deep sea of ideas ranging from R&B, drum&bass, choice hip hop, jazz and fusion, while still biting on to the outskirts of Rock N’ Roll. This sound has been coined as “award winning muscle-funk, the best trio until Venus grows a palm tree!”
Ben, Jazz, and Kit come through like a thunderstorm of big, fat beats, low end, groove-heavy melodies, with a seamless blend of unpredictable and intimate spontaneity that will leave you on the edge of your bar stool or “stuck” on your tippie-toes! This demonstration is inspirational and a breath of fresh air, instilling in you, once again…the motivational and life-enticing energy that flourishes within music!