Ben Powell

Artist of the Month | August 2010


Ben uses the TRINITY system in his Lowden 025.


I’ve been using the K&K Trinity Western System for the last three years in my Lowden O25. It is without doubt the most natural and authentic sounding solution for live performance around.  It captures the thick, warm woody tones of the Lowden but also the sparkling harmonics and overtones that make the guitar really sing. A wonderfully musical mic/pickup combination

Ben Powell is an acoustic fingerstyle guitarist based in Glasgow . In January 2010 he won a ‘Danny’ at the Celtic Connections Open Stage, Scotland . Ben started playing aged 13, learning by ear the guitar solos of Peter Green, Eric Clapton and The Rolling Stones.

After a musical youth and a diet of rock guitar music he became distracted by an interest in Philosophy, particularly musical Aesthetics and Existentialism. Following two degrees and much mulling and pondering Ben set out with friends to discover India and Nepal . After only two weeks away the fingers began to itch, and an Indian brand “Givson” semi-acoustic was purchased on the road for £25. The fingerstyle journey had its origin.

Blown away by Martin Taylor’s ‘Solo’ and Pierre Bensusan’s ‘Intuite’, Ben resolved to throw away his pick for good and dedicate himself to the art of fingerstyle guitar. Seven years, three guitars and many mistakes later Ben released his first album ‘Preliminaries’, a collection of original instrumental compositions inspired by his travels. He now plays almost exclusively in DADGAD tuning on a lovely rich sounding Lowden O25.

As a self taught guitarist Ben’s approach to the guitar is unconventional. From ‘discovering’ artificial harmonics aged 13 by accidentally brushing against the strings, to exploring the intricate patterns he weaves in DADGAD, Ben’s approach to music is similar to a traveller or explorer; always looking for the new, the unknown and revelling in the happy accidents that occur along the path. Drawing from artist Howard Hodgkin, Ben’s compositions are often conceived as musical representations of emotional situations involving both place and people. The melody serves to capture a felt response to a place or situation involving the subject. ‘Preliminaries’ (released July 2010) marks the start of Ben Powell’s journey as a musical travel writer.

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