Sean Benjamin
Gig Seeker Pro

Sean Benjamin

Cleveland, OH | Established. Jan 01, 2003 | SELF

Cleveland, OH | SELF
Established on Jan, 2003
Band Rock Singer/Songwriter




"Sean Benjamin"

To reach your goal in the music industry is to follow a dream, and see it through, never giving up on yourself no matter what. Although those dreams will be varied from artist to artist, the end result always remains the same, and that’s success.

Sean Benjamin is one such artist, but with a slightly different angle in the early days, and that was to take his already amazing talent to the public, to impress a love interest, and although this worked tremendously well, it set the cornerstone in his career, and soon carved his name in stone also, to the talented artist you hear today.
With a cool hand and a smooth delivery, Sean delivers each and every song with such dulcet tones that leave his audience hanging on to his every word, and everyone there present, in a more thoughtful frame of mind, as they drift away with him into the storyboard itself, almost seducing them straight from the footlights.

Based in Cleveland, Ohio, and formed in 2002, Sean Benjamin started playing guitar when he was 13, taking up the bass when he was 19 performing around the Ohio State University bar-scene in Columbus, Ohio.

Over the years Sean has been inspired by Pink Floyd, Peter Gabriel, The Beatles, Dean Martin, Wilson Pickett, Percy Sledge, Clarence Carter, Dave Matthews Band, Alice in Chains, A Perfect Circle, Dr. Dre, Timbaland and Method Man.

As a performer, Sean draws his influence from such artists as INXS, Gorillaz, Arctic Monkeys, Damien Rice, David Gray, Peter Gabriel, G. Love and Special Sauce, Citizen Cope, Howie Day, David Gilmour, Depeche Mode, New Order, and Plan B, all sculpting his style as he slowly cut his teeth within the industry, and has been lucky enough to have performed shows across most of the eastern half of America, including NYC, Chicago, Cleveland, Columbus, Pittsburgh, DC, Nashville, Daytona Beach, and Detroit, along with a few shows in Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and twice in London and Edinburgh with a single performance in Dublin.

Along the way Sean has had the pleasure to of opened for Howie Day, Goo Goo Dolls, Gin Blossoms, Switchfoot, Mickey Avalon, and Red Wanting Blue, all adding to his recognition, reputation and promotion, and got his first lucky break on Sirius XM’s Opie and Anthony Show, whilst on tour in New York City.

In a recent interview, I asked Sean what drives him as a solo artist, he told me;

“The initial drive with me was trying to get an ex-girlfriend back, and it worked a couple of times, but when it stopped, it didn't hurt things with attracting new relationships. But, after I got started down this road, I wanted to keep on driving and growing, writing more music, mixing more styles, playing in front of more people and in different places for those who want to hear my material”.

I went on to ask about his biggest passion in music, he told me;

“The passion for me is to simply write music that resonates with people, and of course music that I enjoy both playing and listening to”.

So I followed this up by asking about his main goal and long term view, and what he has learnt about himself in his time in the music industry, he went on to add;

“My main goal is to keep putting music out. I have so many unreleased songs that I want to re-record from my basement studio past. Honestly, I could use someone to tell me which to get done first. Beyond that I want to keep hitting the road, and travelling to play in as many places as possible. Getting to interact with people in different places is the best part of this whole thing. Obviously, 2020 has made that difficult. I hope I have grown as an artist, because I joked around in my press release about the EP, that I plan on returning to immaturity, to release some of my backlog of songs. As an artist, I go through phases where my main influences are in the driving seat for weeks or months at a time. As an individual, I've learnt to be a bit more grounded, as there just isn't that golden ticket or one magical event that means you Make It, and that you have to keep getting out there to make the moments over and over again, and that sometimes having some time off isn't the end of the world”.

And that brings me nicely to the ep in question here “Find Your Own Way Out” featuring “Bring Love My Way”.

Truly a great wordsmith and observationalist, Sean captures the moment here beautifully, with a certain swagger that instantly strikes the air with that same aforementioned seduction, instantly turning heads to listen up to what he has to say. His laid back, almost bluesy delivery here, although simplistic in flow, paints that perfect mental picture bespoke of those long lost smoke filled bars, as he sends his message to the masses, displaying the same swagger in the studio as he does LIVE, with both tracks equally as profound as the other.

Musically, Sean cuts a great rhythmic flow, almost drumming his guitar into submission, keeping heads bouncing throughout, as you immerse yourself in its rich flow, laced with pure emotion.

Vocally, this crooner captivates his audience from the get go, tugging on many heartstrings along the way, as he wears his on his sleeve and bares his soul. His attention to detail raises many an eyebrow with a very familiar response, as Sean gives us all something to think about lyrically, and sometimes long forgotten.

Star Rating - 10/10

To close, I asked Sean if there was anything else he wanted our readers to know, he told me;

“Well, I hope you all like the songs from this ep, as my previous tracks were very different in style, and my next releases will be different again. I hope you all stick around for all of it, as you might like some material even better than the recent tracks. But thank you for giving me the chance to begin with, and always feel free to contact me on social media to talk about it, or anything else for that matter”.

So why not Find Your own Way In and clear a space in your collection, and give Sean Benjamin a try for 2020 so he can
Bring Love Your Way. - Stargazer Music Magazine

"Local Singer-Songwriter Sean Benjamin Teams Up with British Artist for New Music Video"

Born and raised in Cleveland, singer-songwriter Sean Benjamin got his start after he went to an open mic night at an Arabica coffeehouse and, as he puts it, “got bit by the bug.”

Initially, he just recorded his songs in his basement and sold the CDs at live shows. He released I Exist, his first studio-produced record, in 2011, and has steadily performed and recorded ever since.

Just today, he released Find Your Own Way Out, a new three-song EP.

“This was originally written as a single song with two parts, 'Find Your Own Way Out/Bring Love My Way,' but was split to accommodate a third instrumental piece to be added and to allow more listener control,” he says in a release about the EP, which showcases his distinctly husky voice and blues sensibilities. “It's a bit different than my other stuff, but I think it's a bit of a more matured version of my style. I do anticipate reverting to immaturity in the future in order to release more of my back catalogue.”

The Robbie Robertson-like title track serves as a “bluesy indictment of a former relationship from the perspective of someone who is fed up with unreciprocated effort and acts of devotion.” "Bring Love My Way" centers on "an upbeat flirtatious quest to fill the void with a new relationship based on the same type of intoxicating crush that built its predecessor."

"The song references former flames and crushes, both real and fictitious, itching to find a passion that could ignite a fiery new love story," says Benjamin of "Bring Love My Way." "The final track is an instrumental reimagining of the opening song. The blues influence is even more pronounced in this rumination of being left feeling empty and out of control. Only after allowing the emotions to ebb and flow can the fog of withdrawal dissipate.”

Benjamin has also released a music video for the Pink Floyd-inspired “Find Your Own Way Out (reprise).” The video features motion artwork from British artist Stefania Buzatu, and the artwork compares favorably to the pour painting artwork by Benjamin's mother that he used for the EP cover art.

- Jeff Niesel - SCENE Magazine

"Exclusive: Cleveland singer-songwriter Sean Benjamin premieres "Elaborate""

CLEVELAND, Ohio - What started as a regular gig at Cleveland coffee house open mics eventually turned into performances around the world for singer-songwriter Sean Benjamin.

Benjamin, who has an extensive collection of original pop and R&B songs, is releasing his newest song "Elaborate" with today. You can listen to the premiere below.

Like much of Benjamin's music, "Elaborate" is about a woman. "Sometimes you end up having a crush on somebody and they're already taken," said Benjamin. "That's what this song is about."

The song is a bridge between his last CD, 2011's "I Exist," and his current soul pop style, drawing more from his live performance energy.

"Elaborate" is just the first song in a string of releases Benjamin has prepared for 2018. Currently, he's working on two separate EPs -- one, he'll produce and release himself, while the other will be produced by fellow singer-songwriter Michael McFarland.

"Basically [McFarland] and I have played so many shows together over the years that he knows a pretty big selection of my catalog, and he hand-picked songs he wanted to work on with me," said Benjamin. "My thing I'm doing is more of the soul pop-influenced thing, and working with Michael, he has a little more of the organic sound to it."

Before this year arrived, Benjamin got most of his songwriting done while he attended Ohio State University in the early 2000s. Benjamin recorded songs in friends' basements and made CDs himself with a burner and printed stickers.

"I'd just crank songs out," he said. "I had a little bit more time and songwriting was really fresh for me."

From there, Benjamin started playing anywhere he could, often hitting venues in Ohio college towns. Then, he started getting shows in New York and Chicago, and even performed on the "Opie And Anthony" SiriusXM radio show. The songs he wrote in college were refined for his new shows, some of them showing up on "I Exist."

Benjamin continued to push forward over the years, performing a few well-attended shows in the U.K. opening concerts for Howie Day, Goo Goo Dolls, Switchfoot and more. Besides releasing more music in 2017, his main plans are to keep getting on the stage wherever he can.

"There certainly are some great opportunities for singer-songwriters in Cleveland right now. But there also is a lot of competition out there. It's difficult to get yourself in front of people," said Benjamin. "I just hope that the community, Clevelanders, come out to support songwriters and bands and other artists doing original music here." - / Cleveland Plain Dealer

"Sean Benjamin – Find Your Own Way Out"

Music changes, but it should always boogie when it can!

Sean Benjamin’s single boogie-shakes by way of garage-rock luminaries the Arctic Monkeys and the Black Keys. What Mr. Benjamin has learned and does best of all is color the boogie with atmospheric keys and sand-papered vocals.

The song never reaches a boiling point, but it takes a lot of control to keep this kind of beat steady. - Alt77

"Rock City"

On his own-
"I'm an acoustic singer-songwriter, very influenced by a lot of things," says Benjamin, a cat lover who cites touchstones such as '90s alternative rock, soul singers Wilson Pickett and Percy Sledge, neo-soul groove-master G. Love & Special Sauce, and low impact troubadours Damien Rice and David Gray.
Years ago, Benjamin issued material on the now-defunct neo-soul label FTF Records, but now, all his material is self-released. "The whole landscape of playing music has changed," he says. "A label is not as required as it used to be. (But) it would be great for me right now because I don't have the bandwidth to do all this stuff on my own."
Benjamin, who in January released "Elaborate," his first single in years, sells most of his music through online channels like iTunes and Amazon, pressing limited runs of his CDs to sell at shows.
"Culturally, Cleveland is good for the independent musicians, despite the fact that there's not a concentrated music scene in one geographic part. You almost have to treat Cleveland as a couple of different markets. I don't market my Lakewood shows to people in Lyndhurst because of the distance." - Jstyle

"Band of the Week: Sean Benjamin"

Meet the Band: Sean Benjamin (vocals and guitar)

Open Mic Fiend: Born and raised in Cleveland, singer-songwriter Sean Benjamin started performing during his sophomore year at Ohio State. "I fell into it," he says. "I had written all these songs to try to get a girl back. That worked and then stopped working." Yet, he kept writing songs. "I went to an open mic night at the Arabica by John Carroll University and one night the guy who ran it wasn't there so they asked me to just play there. I played every song I knew, and I got bit by the bug. I've been chasing that high ever since."

On Recording: Initially, Benjamin just recorded his songs in his basement and sold the resulting CDs at live shows. "They're the worst quality," he admits. "The songs are good, but my voice isn't developed. I still play those songs. When I made my studio-produced record [2011's I Exist], some of those songs were on them." He's currently in the process of recording an EP with his backing band Lucky City, and he hopes to record another solo album with producer Dru Boogie.

Why You Should Hear Him: His songs run a wide gamut. With its hushed vocals and percolating synths, "Sky Dive" draws from '80s pop/funk and the acoustic "Tenth Month" sounds a bit like something from singer-songwriter David Gray. "From a marketing standpoint, I break every rule," he says with a laugh. "I play all these different genres. I'm the worst nightmare for a record company. I have one song with a hip-hop sound and one with a folk sound. Sometimes, I play solo acoustic and sometimes I play with Lucky City and sometimes I play with my producer Dru Boogie and we have done some shows with turntable."

Where You Can Hear Him: - SCENE Magazine

"Interview: Sean Benjamin"

*Original Article available at:

Every now and then a fresh spin is put on a standard format most would have considered fully explored. Sean Benjamin’s acoustic R&B does just that, as it embarks on a noble journey to fight against predictable and tired singer songwriters. The Cleveland natives personal and self revealing lyrics cement a message that speaks to the masses while putting his most heartfelt emotions center stage. We sat down with Sean to talk about his debut full length release, performing on the Opie & Anthony Show, and some of his surprising influences.

S*KM: What inspired you to become a solo acoustic act instead of trying 
to fill your music out with a full band?

SB: I would love to do more shows with a band, but for the most part it has been difficult to find musicians who are willing to travel to some of the cities where I have shows. Solo shows however can be fun in that you can slow down and interact with the crowd a bit more.

S*KM: Are you a self taught musician or did you ever undergo any 
formal training?

SB: Mostly self taught, but I picked up techniques from musicians I have jammed with over the years. Also just learning how to play chords from learning songs on the internet.

S*KM: What would you consider to be your strongest attribute in your 
musical creation process?

SB: I would say the fact that I got my start writing the beats and background guitar for R&B and hip hop has brought a different take on acoustic music. That and having a serious relationship that ended around the same time all this was going on, it pushed me to be better.

S*KM: You are currently working on your debut album, when can we 
expect to see that out and what are people in store for when they do 
get their hands on it?

SB: I think we are hoping to release the album in early 2009. What we are aiming for is a CD you can listen to while you drive, while in a club, at home alone and hopefully at home not so alone if you know what I mean.

S*KM: What kind of details can you give on the effort, album title, 
producer, track listing/number of songs, etc.?

SB: So far we have not decided on a name. The producer I am working with has a strong background in Hip Hop and dance music which adds a new layer to the songs I have been performing solo acoustic at shows for a while. When it comes down to it I would be happy with at least 12 songs, if we can include more, Great!

S*KM: When you are writing do you follow any sort of formula or do try 
and do something different in each song?

SB: In the past I have usually written music first and try to match lyrical content to the mood of the song. There have been times though that I really want to write a song about a certain topic, which then drives the composition of the melody. Sometimes it seems like you wait such a long time for a good song to pop into your head, days or weeks, and then you write it in 4 or 5 minutes.

S*KM: A lot of your songs’ lyrical content deal with the lost and found 
loves in your life. You are quoted on the matter saying, “I’m not 
wiser than the next guy. These are things I’ve found people relate to 
– things that have worked for me.” Is this a creed you will try to 
adhere to as much as possible, or do you think you will ever find 
yourself branching out in new directions?

SB: Well I can only write about things I have experience with, and I have experience with getting dumped or pursuing new love. In my recent music I try to take a more “live without regrets” approach to my songwriting. While I’ve gotten some good songs out of dwelling on the past, once the feeling leaves you and you are over it, the songs lose their credibility.

S*KM: If my facts are straight you were a guest on the Opie & Anthony 
show as a fan a while back, which lead to an impromptu 
performance in-studio. What was that like being put on the spot and having 
to play for a national radio audience?

SB: I’m just a fan of the show, its what I listen to every day and the replay and the other programming on their channel. So just being there in the studio was intense. I thought that the fan base who mostly listens to the program on new rock and hard rock stations would not be drawn to my music, but the Opie and Anthony fans have been really supportive and they are good to have on your side. The hardcore O&A fans are not afraid to tell anyone what they really think which makes anyone going on the show a little nervous, I think they could tell I was one of them and that I sit there all the time in my driveway listening up until the end of the break.

S*KM: For anyone who has not had the chance to catch a live show, how would describe the experience they are missing out on?

SB: I try to mix up the set list a lot from show to show and interact with the crowd. I have a rotation of 10 CDs - Saw*Kick Media:

"Sean Benjamin - Elaborate"

With his honest, organic approach, lets hope we don’t have to wait another seven years for more funky, sultry acoustic neo soul! - The Dutch Guy -

"Local Band in Focus - Sean Benjamin"

Meet the Artist: Singer-songwriter Sean Benjamin has opened for alt-rock types like the Goo Goo Dolls and Switchfoot, but he's just as big on singing hip-hop hooks and playing solo acoustic gigs.

Dark Side of the Sean: Benjamin's latest record, the super-ambitious I Exist, includes both an "industrial sensual dance number" and "the spirit of a Pink Floyd album," he says.

Jock Shock: In keeping with a listen-to-me album title like I Exist, Benjamin will do anything for an audience, even if it means having an ex-girlfriend take off her shirt on Opie & Anthony so they'll let him play a song live on the air.

Boogie With Dru: A true try-anything troubadour, Benjamin has utilized everything from turntable scratching by co-producer buddy Dru Boogie ("Should I [Live DJ Mix]") to singing an entire song in Italian ("Il Cantuatore").

Why You Should Hear Him: Benjamin wants to be everything to everyone: "Available solo acoustic, full band, or with DJ," he says. The dude will perform for anyone who wants to listen, including audiences in England and Scotland.

Where You Can Hear Him:

Where You Can See Him: At the Grog Shop on June 30. — Dan Weiss
- SCENE Magazine

"Way of Love Fest"

“...Popular area reggae artist Carlos Jones will host the main stage, which features teen rocker Bri Geraci, Andrew Stafford, Cactus 12, Sean Benjamin (“a great songwriter — the most talented one on the bill,” says Jambe), Billy Gibby and Special Blend (“like a young Sublime”). A half dozen alternative rock acts will play the Pirates Cove stage, while an all-star hip-hop lineup will occupy the upstairs Club Rockstar with artists such as Mo-Pacino, Spittin Image and Iyan Anomolie. Tickets: $12 advance, $15 day of show. Go to for more information on the show and on the promoters’ upcoming activities..."

— Anastasia Pantsios - Cleveland Free Times

"The New Music City is in Town - Yes Our Town"

"Music City: think Akron, Ohio. Plenty of musicians flee to follow trends and grasp onto a part of the buzz in New York, Los Angeles, Nashville or the like.

Others embrace their own culture and flourish. Think: Neo-soul. Original Motown used with some 70’s funk amped up for today’s market. Think local talent: 1959, Drop Soma and Sean Benjamin..."

By Carissa Bowlin - Akron News Now

"Sean Benjamin Performs 'Did Anybody See that Girl' Live in Studio"

Sean Benjamin, an aspiring independent musician from Cleveland, plays his song "Did Anybody See That Girl" live on the Opie and Anthony show with a Schecter guitar that could be the most out-of-tune piece of crap we've seen. However, Sean's music is amazing, and it won't be long before he's way too famous to ever come back to see us. Thanks to Sam for the video.

4/11/08 - Opie & Anthony Show -


Main releases: 

Live in Columbus (2009) LP
4 Play (2011) EP
I Exist (2011) LP 
Live Live Live (2013) LP
Elaborate (2018) Single
Find Your Own Way Out (2020) EP

Previous underground releases:

Live Studio Album (2002) LP
Sophomore (2002) LP
Wounded Eyes (2003) LP
The Sketchbook (2003) LP
Lucky O'Mac (2004) LP
Cure for the Common Ex-Girlfriend (2005) LP
Il Cantautore (2007) LP



Alternative artist Sean Benjamin is known for his smooth and seductive vocals over genre-bending songs that draw influence ranging from Peter Gabriel and INXS to G. Love and Jack Johnson to Wilson Pickett and Dean Martin. 

After cutting his teeth in college bars across the midwest, Benjamin got his first big break on Sirius XM’s Opie and Anthony Show while in NYC for a tour date. Following the appearance, the singer/songwriter partnered with long-time show contributor and producer Dru Boogie to create an epic psychedelic pop album I Exist, that featured the singles “Hypnotized”, “Chain Reaction”, “Love Me Like a Drug” and “Sky Dive”.

Promoting the album, Sean toured the U.S. and U.K., joining lineups featuring bands like Goo Goo Dolls, Howie Day, Red Wanting Blue, Mickey Avalon, Switchfoot, Hey Monea! and Gin Blossoms. 

In 2018, Benjamin released the single “Elaborate” after making his second trip across the Atlantic to perform in England and Scotland again, and for the first time in Dublin, Ireland. 

Coming off of a busy show schedule that included festivals such as ComFest, Millennium Music Conference, and Singer Songwriter Cape May, the touring has been put on pause in 2020, but the music has not. Benjamin released a 3-song mini-EP “Find Your Own Way Out” in late July with more  on the way. 

TL;DR Highlights, in reverse order:

- "Find Your Own Way Out" (EP 2020) released digitally July 31, 2020.

- Releases "Elaborate" (2018) Single, first studio record from Sean in almost 7 years. 

- Performs across England, Scotland and Ireland in his second European Tour (2017) 

- Performs across the U.S. promoting recent releases, opens for Howie Day, Goo Goo Dolls, Switchfoot, Mickey Avalon, Hey Monea, Red Wanting Blue and Gin Blossoms during this time. This run included Sean's first shows in Los Angeles and Santa Monica, his first shows in Las Vegas, Nashville, State College, Cape May, and Detroit, as well as more shows in New York City, Chicago and all over Ohio. 

- Releases Live Anthology "Live, Live, Live" of 21 recordings from shows 2008-2013. 

The final music video from I Exist is released for "Love Me Like a Drug" in Nov. 2012. 

- Releases "I Exist", (2011 LP) a 24-track studio album collaboration with Opie and Anthony regular Dru Boogie. 

- Performs his first tour of the Southern U.S. on tour supporting Hey Monea, Late 2010. 

- Performs his first tour in the U.K., playing shows in London, Reading, Gloucester and Edinburgh Summer 2010. 

- Makes his second appearance on the Opie and Anthony Show on Sirius XM, Feb 6, 2009 to promote "4 Play" (2009 EP). Sean and Dru Boogie perform a live set of their collaboration to a crowded PIANOS NYC upstairs later that night. 

- Releases "4 Play", (2009 EP) featuring the first 4 singles from Sean's collaboration with Dru Boogie. This is followed by music videos for "Hypnotized" and "Chain Reaction" 

- Discovered on the Opie and Anthony Show by producer, DMC DJ champion and regular guest Dru Boogie (DJ Slyce) April 2008. Sean performs 3 songs while his then-girlfriend belly danced as part of an un-staged radio bit. Dru joins the team producing Sean's upcoming LP from indie label FTF Records. The night is capped off by Sean's second show in NYC to a packed Alphabet Lounge. 

- January 2008, Sean Benjamin signs with FTF Records, a primarily neo-soul indie label out of the Akron, OH area. 

- Sean gets his start as a performer, playing in college towns, cafes, festivals, fundraiser events, bars and venues across the midwest, releasing underground albums done in friends' basement studios.

Band Members