|Full Name||Alec Shane Benjamin|
|Born||May 28, 1994 in Phoenix, Arizona|
|Genre||Pop, folk, hip hop|
|Notable Songs||"Let Me Down Slowly", "If We Have Each Other"|
|Record Label||Atlantic Records|
Alec Benjamin is a singer, songwriter and producer taking the music world by storm. With his breakout single "Let Me Down Slowly" garnering over a billion streams, this talented young artist from Phoenix, Arizona has firmly established himself as one to watch.
Early Life and Musical Beginnings
Alec Benjamin was born on May 28th, 1994 in Phoenix, Arizona. From a very young age, Benjamin displayed a keen interest and talent for music. He started teaching himself to play various instruments simply by listening and watching YouTube tutorials. By age 10, he had taught himself guitar, piano and drums – all by ear.
As a shy, introverted kid, Benjamin found confidence and comfort in music. He spent hours locked away in his room listening to albums by classic artists like Paul Simon, Billy Joel and Eminem, analyzing their songwriting and honing his own skills. He started crafting his own songs and recording them on shoddy equipment.
By age 14, Benjamin had started a YouTube channel where he uploaded covers of popular songs. Though the videos only got a few hundred views, it gave him his first taste of putting his music out into the world.
After finishing high school in 2013, Benjamin decided to devote all his energy towards developing his artistic voice and songwriting abilities. His early songs exhibited his natural knack for catchy pop melodies and vulnerable, confessional lyrics.
Finding Viral Success
In 2016, Benjamin independently released his debut EP called "Narrated For You" at the age of 22. It included the track "Let Me Down Slowly" which would ultimately propel him to viral success. The song‘s achingly beautiful lyrics and Benjamin‘s earnest delivery resonated deeply with listeners.
After the track exploded on Spotify and YouTube, Benjamin attracted the attention of major labels. He ended up signing with Atlantic Records who re-released "Let Me Down Slowly" to an even bigger reception. The track racked up over 1 billion total streams and peaked at #10 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart – an incredible achievement for an unsigned newcomer.
Benjamin spent the next few years honing his craft and cultivating his fanbase. He embarked on several high profile tours opening for artists like Shawn Mendes and Jon Bellion. He also made his debut at renowned festivals like Lollapalooza, Firefly and Coachella.
The stage was set for full-blown stardom.
Breakout Success with Debut Album
In 2019, Benjamin released his first major label studio album, "These Two Windows" which debuted at #7 on the Billboard 200 chart. It also hit #1 on the iTunes Pop chart, outperforming releases by major pop stars that same week.
The album showcased Benjamin‘s growth and maturity as an artist. Tracks like "Boy in the Picture" and "If We Have Each Other" expanded his sound with fuller production while retaining his signature candid, conversational lyrics.
Benjamin promoted the album by embarking on a massive world tour across North America, Europe and Australia. He performed in legendary venues like New York‘s Radio City Music Hall and the Sydney Opera House. His shows sold out within minutes as his fanbase grew exponentially.
Continued Success and Accolades
Riding high on his successful debut album, Benjamin kept releasing new music over the next couple years. He dropped singles like "The Book of You & I", "Mind is a Prison" and "Jesus in LA" to critical acclaim. The songs racked up millions of streams and expanded his sound.
In 2020, his meteoric rise was recognized by Grammy voters. At just 25 years old, Benjamin was nominated for Best New Artist at the Grammy Awards alongside artists like Billie Eilish, Lizzo and Lil Nas X. Though he didn‘t take home the prize, the nod cemented his status as a rising pop star.
Most recently in 2021, Benjamin returned with a new single called "Must Have Been The Wind" touching on themes of domestic abuse. His willingness to address weighty topics through the lens of catchy pop music has drawn praise. Critics have highlighted his continual growth as both a songwriter and vocalist.
There‘s no doubt Benjamin is just getting started. With a highly anticipated sophomore album on the way in 2022, the future looks very bright for this prodigiously talented young artist.
Musical Style & Influences
Musically, Alec Benjamin‘s sound contains elements of pop, folk, and hip hop. He has cited artists like Eminem, Paul Simon, Frank Ocean and Bon Iver as major influences. Like them, Benjamin crafts singular narrative songs anchored by evocative lyrics and melodies.
His soft, gentle vocals contain a hushed intensity that draws in listeners. The muted sonic palette of his music creates an intimate, melancholic mood even when singing upbeat pop tunes.
Benjamin accompanies himself on guitar and piano, often stripping songs down to just vocals and one instrument. This minimalist, unadorned production focuses attention directly on his voice and lyrics.
Lyrically, Benjamin writes unambiguous confessionals touching on themes like anxiety, depression, heartbreak and self-doubt. His lyrics spill out like diary entries set to music. He has a knack for metaphors and relatable analogies.
Above all, it‘s the earnestness and vulnerability in his writing and delivery that has endeared him to fans. There is a genuine sense of catharsis in his music.
Why Fans Adore Alec Benjamin
There are many qualities that have earned Alec Benjamin a passionate, devoted fan base:
- Relatable lyrics – His candid lyrics articulately capture common struggles like mental health issues and relationships. Fans feel understood and less alone.
- Emotional delivery – There‘s a tremble and sadness in his hushed vocals that convey vulnerability. His voice oozes emotion.
- Catchy pop melodies – Irresistibly hummable and singable hooks underpin his songs. He knows how to craft pop gold.
- Multi-instrumental – He effortlessly plays guitar, piano and drums, often during live shows. This virtuosity is impressive.
- Engaging live performer – Benjamin feeds off the crowd‘s energy. He‘s lively, charming and full of stories between songs on stage.
- Graciousness – He takes time to meet with every fan after shows. His humility and grace endear him.
- Relatability – His normal guy persona makes his success seem attainable. He‘s living the dream of every aspiring singer-songwriter.
5 Fun Facts About Alec Benjamin
- Benjamin became a musical autodidact by learning instruments from YouTube as a kid.
- He funded his early music career by working odd jobs like gardening and pizza delivery.
- Before getting signed, he was rejected by every US college he applied to.
- His first hit "Let Me Down Slowly" was written in just 30 minutes about a failed relationship.
- He initially recorded and produced all his songs alone in his homemade studio.
The Future is Bright for Alec Benjamin
Alec Benjamin has already exceeded expectations for an unsigned, DIY artist from Arizona. He went from a shy kid recording songs in his bedroom to performing at the Grammys and selling out arenas. Yet at just 27 years old, it feels like Benjamin is still in the embryonic phase of his career.
As he gears up to release his sophomore album, his future is blindingly bright. With his prodigious musical talents and gift for cathartic songwriting, Benjamin seems destined for a long, successful career touching countless lives through music. Exciting times lie ahead for this compelling young artist.