Ben H. Allen

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Ben H. Allen (III.) is an American Grammy Award-winning record producer, mixer and songwriter, based in Atlanta, Georgia, United States. He has produced and mixed records by artists such as Walk the Moon, Animal Collective, Gnarls Barkley, Kaiser Chiefs, Cut Copy, Washed Out and Neon Indian.


Early years[edit]

Born in Athens, Georgia, Allen got his start recording his own and friends' bands on a four track cassette multitrack recorder in his parents' basement. Eventually moving to New York City, Allen's work at Battery Studios and The Cutting Room Studios subsequently led to the position as an engineer with Sean Combs's Bad Boy Records, working on records by Mase, Carl Thomas, The Notorious B.I.G., Puff Daddy and others.[1]

Return to Georgia[edit]

In 2001, he relocated to Atlanta, and began a long relationship with CeeLo Green, recording, producing and mixing records together, including 2006's St. Elsewhere by Gnarls Barkley also featuring Danger Mouse.[2] The album reached No. 4 in the Billboard 200 as well as Platinum RIAA certification and won a Grammy Award for Best Urban Alternative Album.[3]

His reputation for bringing the low-end aesthetics of Hip hop to Indie music[2][4] led to numerous projects in that genre in the years to follow. In 2009, Allen recorded, mixed and co-produced Animal Collective's Merriweather Post Pavilion which received Album of The Year honors from publications including Spin and Entertainment Weekly.[5] That same year Allen released Southern Gothic by The Constellations on his own record label MakeRecordsNotBombs, which was eventually re-released by Virgin Records in 2010. He also co-wrote and co-produced the Asher Roth single "I Love College" during this period and co-wrote Here to Stay for the international No. 1[6] album Back to Basics.[7]

In 2010, Allen produced and mixed Deerhunter's Halcyon Digest,[8] as well as releasing two EPs on MakeRecordsNotBombs by Athens, Georgia band Reptar. He also mixed singles for M.I.A. on her album MAYA. In 2011, Allen mixed Zonoscope for Australian band Cut Copy, as well as Within and Without by Washed Out. The same year, he reunited with CeeLo Green co-producing and co-writing the No. 2 Billboard Hot 100 single "Bright Lights Bigger City", which appeared on The Lady Killer. In 2012, Allen produced Walk the Moon's self-titled album, including the No. 7 Billboard Hot 100 single "Anna Sun".[9]

Personal life and advocacy[edit]

Ben Allen currently resides in Atlanta, and works out of Maze Studios in the Reynoldstown neighborhood, which was featured prominently in the vinyl sleeve of Belle and Sebastian's Girls in Peacetime Want to Dance.[10] He is known as an avid basketball fan and season ticket holder for the Atlanta Hawks, which created a public battle with notorious Boston Celtics fans Cut Copy over Twitter during the mixing of Zonoscope.[11] He has also been an outspoken leader in the record industry, leading the opposition movement to a proposed ordinance by the city of Atlanta placing restrictions on recording studios to keep them from operating in proximity to residential areas. Allen was vocal about the adverse effects the proposed law would have on the music industry, speaking out at council meetings, in the media and lobbying council members.[12][13][14] The ordinance was rejected by the Atlanta City Council on January 16, 2017.[15] Allen has also appeared regularly as a guest lecturer in the University of Georgia music program.[16]


Ben H. Allen discography[17]
Year Artist Album Title Label
2021 Maxïmo Park Nature Always Wins Prolifica Inc
2020 Erasure The Neon Mute Records
2020 The Magic Gang Death of the Party Warner Records
2020 Hazel English Wake Up! Marathon Artists
2020 Washed Out Purple Noon Sub Pop Records
2020 Speelburg Porsche Sophomore Slump
2020 Ron Gallo Peacemeal New West Records
2019 Deerhunter Why Hasn't Everything Already Disappeared? 4AD
2019 Japanese Wallpaper Glow Wonderlick, Sony Music
2019 The Big Moon Walking Like We Do Fiction Records
2018 Wild Moccasins Look Together New West Records
2017 GGOOLLDD Teeth EP Roll Call Records
2017 Childhood Universal High Marathon
2017 Dan Croll Emerging Adulthood Communion Group
2017 Magic Giant In the Wind Razor & Tie
2016 Royal Canoe Something Got Lost Between Here and the Orbit Nevado Records
2016 The Temper Trap Thick as Thieves Infectious Music
2016 Shock Machine Open Up the Sky Marathon
2015 Belle and Sebastian Girls in Peacetime Want to Dance Matador Records
2015 Deerhunter Fading Frontier 4AD
2015 Neon Indian Vega Intl. Night School Octave
2015 Civil Twilight Story of an Immigrant Fiction Records
2015 Oberhofer Chronovision Glassnote Records
2014 Kaiser Chiefs Education, Education, Education & War Caroline Records
2014 Jeremy Messersmith Heart Murmurs Glassnote Records
2014 Delta Spirit Into the Wide Dualtone Records
2013 Youth Lagoon Wondrous Bughouse Fat Possum Records
2013 Cults Static Columbia Records
2013 Delphic Collections Chimeric Records
2013 Flagship Flagship Bright Antenna
2013 Washed Out Paracosm Weird World
2012 Walk the Moon Walk the Moon RCA Records
2012 Fanfarlo Room Filled with Light Atlantic Records
2012 Reptar Body Faucet MakeRecordsNotBombs
2012 Animal Collective Centipede Hz Domino Recording Company
2011 Rubik Solar Fullsteam Records
2011 Cut Copy Zonoscope Modular Recordings
2011 CeeLo Green The Lady Killer Elektra Records
2011 Bombay Bicycle Club A Different Kind of Fix Island Records
2011 Washed Out Within and Without Sub Pop
2011 Givers In Light Glassnote Records
2010 Deerhunter Halcyon Digest 4AD
2010 M.I.A. MAYA XL Recordings
2010 Matt and Kim Sidewalks Fader Label
2010 The Constellations Southern Gothic MakeRecordsNotBombs
2009 Animal Collective Merriweather Post Pavilion Domino Recording Company
2009 Asher Roth "I Love College" Universal Music Group
2008 Gym Class Heroes The Quilt Decaydance
2007 Athlete Beyond the Neighbourhood Parlophone
2006 Christina Aguilera Back to Basics RCA Records
2006 Gnarls Barkley St. Elsewhere Atlantic Records
2004 CeeLo Green Cee-Lo Green... Is the Soul Machine Arista Records
2000 Carl Thomas Emotional Bad Boy Records
1999 Mase Double Up Bad Boy Records
1999 Puff Daddy Forever Bad Boy Records


  1. ^ "Athens' Ben Allen the engineer behind Gnarls Barkley | Online Athens". Retrieved 2017-06-21.
  2. ^ a b "Gnarls Barkley & The Atlanta Sound". Retrieved 2017-06-21.
  3. ^ "GRAMMY Rewind: 49th Annual GRAMMY Awards". The Recording Academy. 2012-02-07. Retrieved 2017-06-21.
  4. ^ "Ben Allen: Gnarls Barkley, Animal Collective, Puff Daddy?". Retrieved 2017-06-21.
  5. ^ "The 40 Best Albums of 2009". 2009-12-31. Retrieved 2017-06-21.
  6. ^ "Christina Aguilera's New Album 'Back To Basics' is an Instant Hit Worldwide, Hitting #1 in Country After Country; Songstress Set for Month of Major Dates Across Europe Marking Her First European Tour Since 2003". Retrieved 2017-06-23.
  7. ^ "Ben Allen | Georgia Music". Archived from the original on 2016-04-02. Retrieved 2017-06-22.
  8. ^ "The 100 Best Albums of the Decade So Far (2010-2014) | Pitchfork". Archived from the original on 2016-03-03. Retrieved 2017-06-21.
  9. ^ "Walk the Moon Enjoys Overnight Success Two Years in the Making". Retrieved January 15, 2021.
  10. ^ "Belle And Sebastian - 'Girls In Peacetime Want To Dance' - NME". Retrieved 2017-06-21.
  11. ^ "Ben Allen and Cut Copy locked in Twitter battle over coffee and basketball". Creative Loafing Atlanta. Retrieved 2017-06-21.
  12. ^ Fausset, Richard (2016-12-14). "Atlanta Treads Cautiously in a Clash of Hip-Hop and Neighborhood". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2017-06-21.
  13. ^ "Atlanta recording studios face opposition". Creative Loafing Atlanta. Retrieved 2017-06-21.
  14. ^ "Atlanta music industry recoils at proposed studio ordinance". Retrieved 2017-06-21.
  15. ^ "Atlanta City Council Rejects Crackdown On Music". Retrieved 2017-06-21.
  16. ^ "UGA Music Business Program". Retrieved 2017-06-22.
  17. ^ "Ben H. Allen | Credits | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 2017-06-22.