Rhian Benson

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Rhian Benson
Background information
Birth nameRhiannon Afua Benson
Born (1977-01-10) 10 January 1977 (age 46)
Accra, Ghana
  • Guitar
  • piano
  • keyboards
Years active2003–present

Rhiannon Afua "Rhian" Benson (born 10 January 1977 in Accra, Ghana) is a Ghanaian-British soul and jazz singer and songwriter.

Early life[edit]

Benson was born in Accra, Ghana, to a Welsh mother, a singer, and an Ashanti father, a guitarist.[1] She has a younger sister and a brother.[2] She was raised in Ghana, India (where her family moved following a diplomatic posting of her father),[3] and her mother's native United Kingdom, where she eventually settled. Benson began playing piano and guitar and writing songs and poetry early. Before pursuing a music career, she attended the London School of Economics and gained a degree in econometrics.She continued her education by studying Economics through Harvard's extension certificate program, which she did not complete due to the illness of her mother.[4] Benson later worked at an investment bank.[5]


Once back in the UK, she performed in small London clubs and was discovered by the Los Angeles-based record label DKG Music. Benson moved to Los Angeles, California, to record her debut album, Gold Coast, released in October 2003.[6][7] She wrote all the songs on the album, having composed the music on guitar and keyboards, and co-produced it with producers Bob Power and James Poyser.

Benson won a Mobo Award in 2005.[8]

With the help of Denmark's production duo, Jonas Rendbo and Daniel Fridell, Benson released her second album, Hands Clean, on 14 February 2011.[9] The album redefined modern soul as Benson[10][11] sang with soulful electronic backing. The confessional tales of love, loss and life represented a bold, new direction for her.[12] "Better Without You"[13] was the first single released in February 2011.



  • 2003: Gold Coast
  • 2011: Hands Clean[14]


  • 2003: "Say How I Feel" – UK No. 27[15]
  • 2003: "Stealing My Piece Of Mind"
  • 2011: "Better Without You"


  1. ^ "Rhian Benson". Ghanaweb.com. Retrieved 2 January 2012.
  2. ^ Jacks, Camille (July 2004). "Introducing Rhian Benson and her debut album Gold Coast". The Interview. Whudat. Retrieved 7 November 2011.
  3. ^ Modessa, Keya. "Featuring Rhian Benson". Interview Archive. The Situation. Archived from the original on 27 September 2011. Retrieved 7 November 2011.
  4. ^ "The Next Sade Banks On Her Singing Skills | Arts | The Harvard Crimson". www.thecrimson.com. Retrieved 12 August 2018.
  5. ^ "Rhian Benson Returns to the LSE: Music, Conversation, African Inspiration – LSE Arts and World Bank event". Public Events. London School of Economics. 6 June 2011. Retrieved 7 November 2011.
  6. ^ "Rhian Benson". Thesituation.co.uk. Archived from the original on 4 March 2012. Retrieved 2 January 2012.
  7. ^ Kergan, Wade. "Rhian Benson: Biography". AllMusic. Retrieved 24 April 2011.
  8. ^ "MOBO Awards 2005". MOBO Awards. Archived from the original on 24 July 2011. Retrieved 24 April 2011.
  9. ^ William Frank at XYLO. "The Official Site". Rhian Benson. Retrieved 2 January 2012.
  10. ^ "MOBO winners revealed". NME. 23 September 2005. Retrieved 2 January 2012.
  11. ^ Lindvall, Helienne (2 June 2011). "Behind the music: the singer with her sights on the World Bank". The Guardian – Music Blog. Retrieved 7 November 2011.
  12. ^ "iTunes Music – Gold Coast by Rhian Benson". iTunes Store. 7 October 2003. Retrieved 2 January 2012.
  13. ^ "AWAL UK Ltd – Music Distribution, Licensing and Marketing". Awal.com. Retrieved 2 January 2012.[permanent dead link]
  14. ^ MIMI Magazine (21 January 2010). "The MIMI Magazine Blog: Rhian Benson Poised To Return In 2010 With "Hands Clean"". Mimimagazine.blogspot.com. Retrieved 2 January 2012.
  15. ^ Roberts, David (2006). British Hit Singles & Albums (19th ed.). London: Guinness World Records Limited. p. 54. ISBN 1-904994-10-5.

External links[edit]