Notes by Ben

Notes by Ben

Ben Thomas plays the vibes and bandoneon, and composes music.

News and Updates

Tiny Orchestral Moment w/ Tony Levin!

Steve Ball has completed another version of his Whales project, this time with Tony Levin.
It’s not often that you get to play with your childhood bass hero. Victory!

Tango Sin Fin needs your help

The great tango organization Tango Sin Fin is asking for financial help to continue their work in education and publication. They have been publishing important historical works as well as contemporary new work of the highest quality.
Here is a brochure explaining the work they do and why it’s so important.
If you believe in the importance of tango music, please join me in supporting this vital group with whatever financial support that you can.

New Video with Tiny Orchestral Moments

Last week, I got to add a few vibes tracks to a video project put together by Steve Ball and Tiny Orchestral Moments. So far, there are musicians from 5 different countries, and Senegal and New Zealand are up next. It’s nice to be able to still make music, despite the challenges of the Time of the Virus.

New Redwood Tango Album

The album we recorded last summer got released this morning. Charles Gorczynski’s music is amazing and these musicians dug deep. This is probably the hardest I’ve practiced in my life and it was completely worth it. Victory!

https://redwoodtango.bandcamp.com/album/we-become-the-night-sky-vol-i

Jovino Santos Neto Quinteto – Music in the time of Quarantine

I’ve been missing performing on stage with the Quinteto, but we made this happen anyways. Remember to support the people and organizations that need the help and are doing the work necessary to move us forward.

Che, Bandoneon at Wilmington Symphony Orchestra

Here’s a video of me playing “Che, Bandoneon” during Austin Piazzolla Quintet’s performance with the Wilmington Symphony Orchestra in November. It was a thrill to play this solo in such a beautiful concert hall (The Wilson Center at Cape Fear).
Thanks to Tony Rogers and the rest of the APQ!

Duets w/ Eric Likkel at Smith

Every Monday night from 8-10 PM, Eric and I are playing duets at Smith on 15th in Capitol Hill. Tangos, choros, jazz, and original compositions. On Monday nights, bottles of wine are 50% off! The food is delicious and the new owners are doing an amazing job. Come visit for dinner, drinks, and a good hang.

Solo bandoneon at Luc

image164

I’ve started playing solo bandoneon on Sunday nights at Luc in Madison Valley from 6-8 PM. This is one of my favorite restaurants in Seattle and Thierry Rautureau is a restaurant legend for a reason!
I’m playing a mix of tangos and French tunes.
Please stop by for dinner or a cocktail sometime soon.
It’s a perfect way to close off your weekend.

https://thechefinthehat.com

“Che, Bandoneon”

Here’s one of my favorite arrangements by Federico.
I pulled this back out and have had a blast relearning it

Maria de Buenos Aires

I just finished playing a run of Maria de Buenos Aires with the Eugene Opera. We got a really nice review from the Eugene Register-Guard.

“The orchestra…was as powerful an actor as any who sang, recited or danced. Bandoneón player Ben Thomas was charismatic as he interacted with the performers on stage while realizing the difficult parts written by Piazzolla, one of the great Bandoneón composers.”

http://www.registerguard.com/entertainmentlife/20180505/review-eugene-operas-maria-tour-de-force-of-musical-artistic-and-athletic-showmanship