Songs for Children presents Benjamin Francis Leftwich
In a world where electronic production is increasingly drowning out the acoustic guitar in the arsenal of the singer-songwriter, Benjamin Francis Leftwich is unafraid to stick to the classics. Expansive and transcendent though his music may be, it’s always rooted in those six strings and that hollow wooden body.
Raised in the Yorkshire countryside in the North of England, Ben moved away two years ago, heading for Tottenham in London. “Yorkshire’s beautiful,” he says, “that scenery and the coast and the air will always inspire my music, but I don’t have to be there. I lived it and breathed it for a while.”
Tragically losing his father to lung cancer in April 2013 was the impetus Ben needed to make a change to his surroundings – one that manifests itself in his long-awaited second album, ‘After The Rain’.
‘After The Rain’ is the sound of Benjamin finding peace with himself once more. Written during those months which saw him at his lowest, it’s a record that exists between the light and the dark, unafraid to dive deep into both at any moment.
Energy is a concept that flows through everything Ben touches. From his long-standing, fanatical love of hip-hop (“Sometimes there’s a thing, where I say, ‘I really like that Drake song’, and people are like, “No, you sit by the sea and wear cardigans!” he laughs).
From ‘Mayflies’, a track constructed around a doomy, electronic sample, to ‘Some Other Arms’, a heart-on-sleeve confessional, ‘Just As I Was Waking Up’ strips things right back to just Ben and that golden acoustic.
Benjamin Francis Leftwich is ready to lay himself bare with ‘After The Rain’. “If one person emails me and says ‘This is the most moving song I’ve ever heard and it really helped me’ – if it gets one person like that, I’d be really happy,” he says, humbly.