Howard Benson

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Howard Benson
Born Havertown, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Genres Rock, heavy metal, pop, pop rock, glam metal, punk rock, post-grunge, hard rock, country
Occupation(s) Record producer
Instruments piano, synthesizer, organ
Years active 1986–present

Howard Benson is an American music producer and multi-instrumentalist.[1] Benson was nominated for the Producer of the Year Grammy Award in 2007 and 2008.

Early life and education[edit]

Benson began playing keyboards in rock bands at the age of 13.[1] He attended college at Drexel University and studied engineering. During his years at Drexel, Benson took a year off and studied composition at the Philadelphia College for Performing Arts. Benson graduated from Drexel with a degree in materials engineering. After graduation, he moved to Los Angeles and worked for Garrett AiResearch, where he worked on aircraft such as C-5s and F-18s.[2]

He returned to Drexel in 2010 to create and teach the advanced production class at Drexel University's Antoinette Westphal College of Media Arts and Design.[3] In 2011, he established the Howard and Monica Benson Endowed Scholarship Fund for students enrolled at the Antoinette Westphal College of Media Arts and Design.[4]

At the time of his graduation, he regularly played with his band in small Hollywood clubs, and when his band finally went into the studio with a producer, Benson was inspired to become a record producer.[5]

Career[edit]

His first works as producer were two albums for hardcore punk band T.S.O.L. (Revenge (1986) and Hit and Run (1987)), and the first record he produced for a major record label was Bang Tango's Psycho Café in 1989.[6] Benson states that discovering Pro Tools in 1998 while working with Sepultura was a major turning point in his career. He was asked to produce P.O.D.'s The Fundamental Elements of Southtown album in 1999, which became a platinum-selling record.[7] In 2000, Benson produced P.O.D.'s multi-platinum-selling Satellite at Bay 7 Studios, and continued to record numerous albums at that location. Over the next few years, Benson produced records from acts like Cold, Crazy Town, P.O.D.'s Payable on Death, and Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge from My Chemical Romance. He later produced numerous multi-platinum records such as The All-American Rejects, Hoobastank, Flyleaf, Daughtry, Kelly Clarkson, Seether, Third Day, Theory of a Deadman, Three Days Grace, Adam Lambert, Skillet, Santana and Caleb Johnson.

He now produces exclusively at West Valley Studios, in Woodland Hills.[8]

Benson stated that he utilizes Auto-Tune in the studio and that those who don't are "nuts".[9] Benson prefers to record in what he calls a "parallel system," in which musicians will record their parts in isolated rooms.[5] After the recording of an album, Benson typically brings the track to his home studio, Sparky Dark Studios, where he personally adds to the arrangement.

Benson has worked as an A&R consultant at Giant Records, Elektra Records, and Warner Bros. Records.[1]

Awards[edit]

Grammy Awards[edit]

Year Nominee/Work Award Result
2007 Himself Producer of the Year, Non-Classical[10] Nominated
2008 Himself Producer of the Year, Non-Classical[11] Nominated

Discography[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "Interview, HitQuarters Jan 2006". Hitquarters.com. Retrieved Nov 3, 2012. 
  2. ^ [1] Crusher Magazine, November 2004
  3. ^ "ALUMNUS HOWARD BENSON ’80 RECEIVES HONORARY DEGREE". Drexel. 
  4. ^ "HOWARD M. BENSON ’80, HON. ’15". Drexel University. 
  5. ^ a b Grammy-Nominated Producer Turns Tracks Into Gold Mix Online, Feb 1, 2007
  6. ^ Feature "Howard Benson: Producer" Crusher Magazine; November 2004
  7. ^ [2] Ultimate-Guitar.com, May 4, 2011
  8. ^ "Gear: Howard Benson's Round-the-Clock Rock". Billboard Magazine. June 1, 2013. 
  9. ^ "Producing Hit Records". google.com. Retrieved May 20, 2015. 
  10. ^ Staff, Variety. "49th annual Grammy nominations list — part 2". Variety. Retrieved 2016-04-12. 
  11. ^ "The Complete List of Grammy Nominees". The New York Times. 2007-12-06. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2016-04-12.