Rugged, raspy, and roaring with charisma. Halifax’s Ben Caplan is to folklore, what smoke is to bourbon. Perfectly coupled. Ben’s songwriting is bold in both range and ferocity. Fuelled by a quality of melodrama and powerful lyricism, the romance and bravery in his voice gives Caplan a truly innovative and experimental artistry. A sound that bridges the gap between controlled composition and unruly passion.
Caplan has marked his place in the Canadian music landscape with a growling spirit similar to that of Tom Waits. Sometimes joined by his band, The Casual Smokers, Ben strides in pace with gypsy-inspired strings delicately blended with the sultry tones of clarinet and saxophone. Caplan’s tours have extended throughout the Commonwealth, and with the rhapsodic energy of his live show it is no wonder that his elegant cacophony is gaining attention around the world. Breaking between guitar, banjo, piano, and melodica, Caplan’s stage show is almost reminiscent of a burly and bearded Freddy Mercury; a raging, strong, and exploratory songwriter, it’s the blues in his soul and the heart in your chest pounding in sync that makes Ben Caplan an unmissable act.
The music of Ben Caplan is diverse, ranging from poetic ballads to frenetic gypsy anthems. But even when the band delivers the roughest of bar room stomps, there is a surprising depth and musicianship to the songs. Expressive percussion, upright bass, violin, sax, clarinet, flute, and terrific use of call and response sing-along choruses all help Caplan stand out from the masses.
In the Media
- “Nick Cave’s Murder Ballads on Booze”: Rolling Stone Live Review
- Interview with Velvet Rope Magazine
- Interview with Aesthetic Magazine
- Telescope Media’s NXNE Review
- Ben Caplan featured at SCENE Fest
- Ben Caplan featured on Exclaim!
- Tiny Tea Cup Tells’ Great Escape Review
- Virgin Mobile’s Great Escape Review
- 2 Meter Sessies: Live Recording in Amsterdam
- NU’s In The Time Of Great Remembering Album Review
- ROAR E-Zine Reviews Ben Caplan at Brandend Zand Festival
- De Krant van Toen
- Ben Caplan Wins Big at the Nova Scotia Music Awards
- Ben Caplan Interview with Oxide Radio
- Review of performance with Symphony Nova Scotia
Photo Credit: Courtney Lee Yip