Howard Benson

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Howard Benson
Howard Benson.png
Howard Benson in November 2017
Background information
BornHavertown, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Occupation(s)Record producer
InstrumentsPiano, synthesizer, organ
Years active1986–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]


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, Seether, Third Day, Theory of a Deadman, Three Days Grace, Skillet, Santana, Adam Lambert, Kelly Clarkson and Caleb Johnson.

He now produces exclusively at West Valley Recording 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]

Benson produced and appears in Attack of Life: The Bang Tango Movie, which is a 2016 documentary film directed by Drew Fortier about 80s hard rock band Bang Tango for whom Benson had produced two albums.[10]


Grammy Awards[edit]

Year Nominee / work Award Result
2007 Himself Producer of the Year, Non-Classical[11] Nominated
2008 Himself Producer of the Year, Non-Classical[12] Nominated
2013 Stronger Best Pop Vocal Album Won
Love Bites (So Do I) Best Hard Rock/Metal Performance Won

GMA Dove Awards[edit]

Year Nominee / work Award Result
2009 Revelation Pop/Contemporary Album of the Year Won
2010 Awake Rock Album of the Year Nominated
2011 Memento Mori Rock Album of the Year Nominated
2013 New Horizons Rock Album of the Year Nominated
Release the Panic Rock Album of the Year Won


Howard Benson has produced dozens of discs throughout his career for many top artists including Three Days Grace, My Chemical Romance, and Chris Daughtry.


  1. ^ a b c "Interview, HitQuarters Jan 2006". Retrieved November 3, 2012.
  2. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on January 29, 2007. Retrieved January 29, 2007.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) Crusher Magazine, November 2004
  4. ^ "HOWARD M. BENSON '80, HON. '15". Drexel University.
  5. ^ a b Grammy-Nominated Producer Turns Tracks Into Gold Archived June 29, 2010, at the Wayback Machine Mix Online, February 1, 2007
  6. ^ Feature "Howard Benson: Producer" Archived January 29, 2007, at the Wayback Machine Crusher Magazine; November 2004
  7. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on May 13, 2012. Retrieved June 21, 2012.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link), May 4, 2011
  8. ^ "Gear: Howard Benson's Round-the-Clock Rock". Billboard Magazine. June 1, 2013.
  9. ^ "Producing Hit Records". Retrieved May 20, 2015.
  10. ^ ""Attack of Life – The Bang Tango Movie"". Metal Sludge. Retrieved May 23, 2018.
  11. ^ Staff, Variety. "49th annual Grammy nominations list – part 2". Variety. Retrieved April 12, 2016.
  12. ^ "The Complete List of Grammy Nominees". The New York Times. December 6, 2007. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved April 12, 2016.