Ben Bruce

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Ben Bruce
Ben Bruce - Vans 2011.jpg
Ben Bruce performing with Asking Alexandria.
Background information
Birth name Benjamin Paul Bruce
Born (1988-10-31) 31 October 1988 (age 28)
Wandsworth, South London, England
Origin York, North Yorkshire, United Kingdom
Genres metalcore, heavy metal, electronicore (early)
Occupation(s) Singer, guitarist, clothes designer
Instruments Vocals, guitar, keyboard
Years active 2008–present
Labels Sumerian
Associated acts Asking Alexandria, City in the Sea, Kill It With Fire

Benjamin Paul "Ben" Bruce (born 31 October 1988) is an English musician. He is a solo artist and also the lead guitarist and backing vocalist of metalcore band Asking Alexandria. Bruce co-founded the band with lead vocalist Danny Worsnop.

Biography[edit]

Early life[edit]

Bruce was born in Wandsworth, South London, England on 31 October 1988.[1] At the age of six he and his family moved to Dubai.[2][3] He would later move back to England in 2006 at age 17 in order to gain recognition in the music industry, which he would gain after forming Asking Alexandria.[3]

Bruce started playing the electric guitar at the age of 12 after being inspired by blues he then started listening to pop punk groups such as Blink-182, Sum 41 and Green Day and later, metal bands like Metallica and Iron Maiden. He insisted on learning to play electric guitar and would learn songs by ear.[4] Bruce has stated that some of his favourite records consist of: Metallica's Kill 'Em All for its raw and aggressive sounds, Guns N' Roses' Appetite for Destruction, and Slipknot's debut album which influenced him into more extreme metal genres.[5]

2006–present: Asking Alexandria[edit]

Bruce originally formed the band in Dubai, United Arab Emirates in 2006. The band's original line-up consisted of completely different members compared to that of the band's lineup from 2008. The band released their debut album titled 'The Irony of Your Perfection'. Bruce moved back to England, Nottingham in 2006 at the age of 17 and the band followed only to leave after a month due to not being fully committed but Bruce wasn't willing to stop anytime soon so he reassembled the band with new members from the local area, including lead singer Danny Worsnop, of which he had moved into his flat apartment in York. He carried the name 'Asking Alexandria' over to the new lineup due to not wanting to bother to come up with a brand new name, so he stuck with the old one.[6] When asked why he chose that particular name, he explained that "'Most bands have a pretty shit band name, so I just came up with something. I came up with Alexandria as a human name, because people relate to humans." although the reason for using the word 'asking' is not explained.[7]

The band released their first official debut album titled Stand Up and Scream in 2009 via Sumerian and Victory records, produced by Joey Sturgis.[8] Although it didn't chart in the UK, it did chart in the US, peaking at; 4 in the Top Heatseekers, 24 in the Top Hard Rock Albums and 29 in the Top Independent Albums.[9] The band's second album, titled Reckless and Relentless, was released in 2011 via Sumerian records, which again featured Joey Sturgis.[10] This time, the album did chart in the UK, peaking at 7 on the UK Rock Chart, and also charted in Australia at 30 on the Australian Albums Chart.[11][12] They released their third album, titled From Death to Destiny in 2013 via Sumerian Records and peaked in the US at 5 and the Top Hard Rock Albums at 1,[9] and also charted in the UK at 28 and in Australia at 11, making it their most commercially successful album to date.[13][14]

2014–present: Solo[edit]

Bruce announced that he would start recording his first album as a solo artist on 6 January 2014, after Danny Worsnop's open involvement with both Asking Alexandria, his solo album, and his latest project We Are Harlot.[15] When interviewed by Artistdirect's Rick Florino, Bruce stated that he had recorded his solo album when asked about the direction it is leaning into he responded with "There's nothing really heavy about it. There are a few classic rock 'n' roll tunes on there. Really, it's a lot of softer rock stuff." and compared it to Keane or Oasis, going on to say that it is a more of a chilled rock album, he also stated that he is the primary vocalist of the album and has eased off the guitar duties for this particular album.[16] In January 2015, Danny Worsnop stated that Bruce has completed his album and will be releasing it that same year.[17]

In March 2014, Bruce was revealed as a featured artist on the cover compilation album of Florence + The Machine, released by Sumerian Records, of which he covered the single Shake It Out.[18] When Rocksound queried on the sound of the solo album, Bruce stated that he'd describe it as "Chilled out. I'd honestly liken it to Keane, Robbie Williams and Oasis." and further stated that he finds Robbie Williams to be his main influence.[19] It was also revealed that the album will be released through Sumerian Records later in 2015, however due to the departure of Danny Worsnop from Asking Alexadria, Bruce decided to put his solo career on hold while he gets his main band up and running again with a new singer and album.[19][20] Since then he has stated that he has written more material for his solo project and intends to record new songs along with re-recording his older ones once he has some time off from touring.[20]

Other ventures[edit]

2011–present: BB Clothing[edit]

Bruce started his own clothing line originally in 2011 and existed as an online business, separated from official merchandise associated with Asking Alexandria. Bruce remained inactive on the project after 27 June 2013, the last date which he added new designs to his brand, but released a statement that more designs will be released in the following year.[21]

2014–present: KBB Records[edit]

"KBB Records is a label run by artists, for artists. With my love and passion for music along with my knowledge and understanding of the music industry it's our goal to work alongside incredible artists of all genres and to create and release amazing music for the world to fall in love with."

Loudwire, Chad Childers, 'Asking Alexandria Guitarist Ben Bruce Launches New KBB Records Label'

In March 2014, it was announced that Bruce, along with Asking Alexandria's manager, Kyle Borman, had launched a record label called 'KBB', and had signed a rap metal band called 'Scare Don't Fear'.[22] The band themselves decided to sign with KBB due to other record labels requesting them to change their style of music, while Ben Bruce expressed that he didn't want anything to change in their sound and to maintain it instead, giving the band more freedom in their creativity.[23]

It was revealed later that month that Caroline Records will be in a distribution partnership with KBB Records.[24] The label's first release and the band's debut album, 'From the Ground Up', was released on 17 June the same year.[25] In May the same year, it was revealed that metal band 'The Family Ruin' had also been signed and added to the roster and will be releasing an album later the same year.[26]

When he was asked why he created the label in the first place, he explained that he loved every aspect of music and wanted to be further involved in the music industry whether it's writing it, performing it, or helping other bands, and explained that it initially started with "...groups of my friends starting bands and asking for my help to manage them. I thought, "Wouldn't it be great if I could actually help bands that I think are worthy of being helped and deserve to be somewhere more than just giving them advice?""[16]

Current roster[27]
  • Scare Don't Fear (2014–present)
  • The Family Ruin (2014–present)
  • Run 2 Cover (2015-present)
  • A Fall To Break (2015-present)

Personal life[edit]

On 24 May 2013, Bruce married Samantha Cassaro but announced their divorce on November 9, 2015. [28][better source needed][29] In May 2015 he began dating Ciara Bertjens, meeting through Warper Tour. On August 13, 2016, Bruce announced that he would not be joining his band for certain tour dates, as his daughter was to be born soon. His daughter, Fae Holley Bruce was born on September 10, 2016. On June 15, 2017, his long term girlfriend, Ciara Bertjens, and mother of his children announced via Instagram they married in a small intimate ceremony at a farm house on June 9, 2017. One day prior they had announced they are expecting a second child in late October.

Discography[edit]

Asking Alexandria

Collaborations and other songs[edit]

Song Year Artist Release
"Discovering Oceans" (featuring Ben Bruce) 2013 City in the Sea Below the Noise[30]
"Overcast" (featuring Ben Bruce)
"Shake It Out" (Florence and the Machine cover) 2014 Ben Bruce Florence + The Sphinx: Sumerian Ceremonials – A Tribute to Florence + The Machine[18]

Accolades[edit]

Nominated work Year Award Result Position
Ben Bruce 2011 Altpress' Guitarist of the Year[31] Won
2012 Guitar World's Top 12 Hot Male Guitar Players for 2012[32] Won 11
Kerrang! Awards 2012 Hottest Male[33] Won
2013 Kerrang! Awards 2013 Hottest Male[34] Won
2014 Kerrang! Awards 2014 Hottest Male[35] Nominated
2015 Metal Hammer Golden Gods Awards Dimebag Darrell Shredder[36]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Bruce, Ben (30 October 2013). "Finally my fucking birthday" (Twitter Tweet). Twitter. Ben Bruce. Retrieved 1 April 2014. Finally my fucking birthday....I'm ollllld now :p 
  2. ^ Doyle, Thomas. "Ben Bruce" (Interview). Kerrang.com (1548). Kerrang! Magazine. Kerrang!. p. 24. Retrieved 20 December 2014. I'm 26 now and I don't want to join the 27 Club of dead rockstars... 
  3. ^ a b Gruenberg, Elliott. "Interview – Asking Alexandria [Ben Bruce] // Blessthefall". Est1987.co.uk. Est1987. Retrieved 27 June 2014. I do like going back to York, because even though I'm from London I did live in York for a long time with the guys, so yeah. 
  4. ^ "INTERVIEW: Asking Alexandria’s Ben Bruce". Iheartguitarblog.com. Iheartguitarblog. Retrieved 1 April 2014. 
  5. ^ Florino, Rick. "Big 3 Records: Ben Bruce of Asking Alexandria Big 3 Records: Ben Bruce of Asking Alexandria". Artistdirect.com. Artistdirect. Retrieved 27 June 2014. 
  6. ^ Wiederhorn, Jon. "Interview: Asking Alexandria". Guitarworld.com. Guitar World. p. 2. Retrieved 27 June 2014. Realizing he would never achieve international recognition in Dubai, Bruce moved on his own to Nottingham, England, in 2008, and after searching the internet for musicians found guitarist Danny Worsnop. 
  7. ^ "Interview with Ben Bruce of Asking Alexandria". Independentphilly.com. Independent Philly. Retrieved 27 June 2014. 
  8. ^ "Asking Alexandria Stand Up and Scream credits". Allmusic.com. AllMusic. Retrieved 27 June 2014. 
  9. ^ a b "Asking Alexandria chart history". Billboard.com. Billboard. Retrieved 27 June 2014. 
  10. ^ "Asking Alexandria Reckless & Relentless credits". Allmusic.com. AllMusic. Retrieved 27 June 2014. 
  11. ^ "2011 Top 40 Rock & Metal Albums Archive 16th April 2011". Officialcharts.com. Official Charts. Retrieved 27 June 2014. 
  12. ^ "Asking Alexandria – Reckless & Relentless (Album)". Australian-charts.com. Australian-charts. Retrieved 27 June 2014. 
  13. ^ "Asking Alexandria chart history". Officialcharts.com. Official Charts. Retrieved 3 July 2014. 
  14. ^ "Asking Alexandria – From Death To Destiny (Album)". Australian-charts.com. Australian-charts. Retrieved 3 July 2014. 
  15. ^ Sweeney, Zachary. "Ben Bruce of Asking Alexandria To Begin Work on Solo Record". Infectiousmagazine.com. Infectious Magazine. Retrieved 27 June 2014. 
  16. ^ a b Florino, Rick. "Interview: Ben Bruce of Asking Alexandria Talks KBB Records, Solo Album, and More". Artistdirect.com. Artistdirect. Retrieved 27 June 2014. 
  17. ^ McLaughlin, David (February 2015). "The Sounds Of 2015: We Are Harlot" (Magazine Article). Rocksound (196): 44. Retrieved 9 January 2015. 
  18. ^ a b Crane, Matt. "Sumerian Records announce Florence + The Machine cover album, stream three covers". Altpress.com. Altpress. Retrieved 15 June 2014. 
  19. ^ a b Kelham, Andrew (March 2015). "Bruce Almighty". Rocksound (197). Rocksound. Rocksound. Retrieved 4 March 2015. 
  20. ^ a b "Asking Alexandria's Ben Bruce Talks 'British Invasion' Tour". Loudwire. Retrieved 2016-04-08. 
  21. ^ Sweeney, Zachary. "Ben Bruce (Asking Alexandria) To Launch 2014 Clothing Line". Infectiousmagazine.com. Infectious Magazine. Retrieved 27 June 2014. 
  22. ^ Childers, Chad. "Asking Alexandria Guitarist Ben Bruce Launches New KBB Records Label". Loudwire.com. Loudwire. Retrieved 1 April 2014. 
  23. ^ Herrera, Robert. "Scare Don't Fear talk Ben Bruce & New Album w/ @RobertHerrera3". Punkvideosrock.com. Punk Videos Rock. Retrieved 3 July 2014. 
  24. ^ Gargano, Paul. "KBB RECORDS Announce Partnership With CAROLINE – Scare Don't Fear release date set". Urbanheromagazine.com. Urban Hero Magazine. Retrieved 27 June 2014. 
  25. ^ "Scare Don't Fear From The Ground Up". MTV.com. MTV. Retrieved 27 June 2014. 
  26. ^ Whitt, Cassie. "The Family Ruin (KBB Records) – "Let It Burn" song premiere". Altpress.com. Altpress. Retrieved 27 June 2014. 
  27. ^ "KBB Records Artists". Kbbrecords.com. KBB Records. Retrieved 27 June 2014. 
  28. ^ "Ben Bruce Biography". IMDB.com. IMDB. Retrieved 1 April 2014. 
  29. ^ Oosthuizen, David. "Interview with Ben Bruce of Asking Alexandria" (Interview). Undergroundpress.co.za. Underground Press. Retrieved 3 August 2014. I'm married, so I like to get home and chill out with my wife and my dogs. 
  30. ^ "City in the Sea Below the Noise". Allmusic.com. AllMusic. Retrieved 27 June 2014. 
  31. ^ Zaleski, Annie. "2011 Guitarist of the Year". Altpress.com. Altpress. Retrieved 27 June 2014. 
  32. ^ Whitmore, Laura. "Guitar Girl'd: Top 12 Hot Male Guitar Players for 2012". Guitarworld.com. Guitar World. Retrieved 27 June 2014. 
  33. ^ "The Kerrang! Awards 2012 – all the winners". Musicweek.com. Music Week. Retrieved 27 June 2014. 
  34. ^ "The Kerrang! Awards 2013 – all the winners". Musicweek.com. Music Week. Retrieved 27 June 2014. 
  35. ^ "Relentless Kerrang! Awards 2014 Winners List". Kerrang.com. Kerrang!. Retrieved 3 July 2014. 
  36. ^ "Dimebag Darrell Shredder". metalhammer.co.uk. Metalhammer. Retrieved 25 March 2015. 

External links[edit]