Ben Bedford ‘Portraits’ and what they say in Britain

ABOUT BEN BEDFORD’s ALBUM ‘PORTRAITS’

..something truly special..(5 stars out of 5 – Rock ‘n Reel / Nicholas John)

Ben Bedford’s name may not be familiar to too many record buyers on this side of the Atlantic but his captivating musical narratives certainly repay closer investigation, and “Portraits” provides an ideal introduction to the Illinois born singer-songwriter’s richly rewarding sound. The contents of this specially curated retrospective draw on material from Bedford’s first three albums,”Lincoln’s Man,” “Land of the Shadows” and “What We Lost,” which were recorded between 2007 and 2012 but never officially released in Europe. His expressive vocals and exquisite guitar work underpin a series of thought provoking character studies which rank amongst the finest examples of understated Americana that you’ll be likely to hear in this or any other year. (Kevin Bryan- Messenger Newspapers – Kevin’s reviews are syndicated to up to approx. 90 other regional UK newspapers)

There are touches of Gordon Lightfoot or Townes Van Zandt in these songs, but John Steinbeck is surely the greater touchstone. Bedford is a boon of a storyteller, a true heir to the classic US folk singers (AmericanaUK / Mark Johnson – 8 /10

Ben Bedford’s voice is warmly expressive, emotive and personably believable, with a resonance to his guitar playing that evokes thoughts of Bruce Cockburn. He’s a gifted storyteller of vivid and engaging tales ( from Roots in August by David Pearson)

….marks Ben Bedford as an intelligent and tasteful singer/songwriter whose sense of writing is that of a person deeply rooted not only in history but in the resonances that those stories still have today. These are portraits that will linger for some time. (from Lonesomehighway.com by Stephen Rapid)

Ben Bedford picks a mean guitar, writes good, workmanlike songs with excellent lyrics, and is possessed of a very agreeable, John-Denver-like voice. His lyrics have inspired at least one reviewer to propose him as the Poet Laureate of Illinois, and I’d have to say he’d deserve the nomination (from Fatea  Records Magazine by Bob Leslie)

this is a perfect introduction to newcomers just discovering his brilliance. (Folking.com / Mike Davies)

 With his warm voice, thoughtful lyrics and superb guitar work, Ben Bedford creates poetry rooted in American life and history. This retrospective is an excellent introduction for the uninitiated, as well as a satisfying experience for the long-time fan. (New Classics / John Pitt)

If you want to hear a master songwriter at work, then this retrospective collection of Bedford’s work is a highly recommended introduction to this amiable and talented musician. (Folkandtumble.com / Gerry McNally)

In summary, Ben Bedford is currently too far under the musical radar but ‘Portraits’ is a carefully chosen compilation that offers an ideal opportunity to discover his hidden treasures. (Spiralearth.co.uk / Steve Henderson)

Ben Bedford comes from a long line of troubadours in the folk tradition, exploring eternal themes through old stories and new stories, and creating moving and thought-provoking songs linking the present with the past. This curated selection of songs from around ten years ago feels more relevant than ever in 2020. (Musicriot.co.uk)

It’s an impressive collection of songs (Country Music People)

It’s PORTRAITS all round from album cover to each of the potential masterpieces waiting to be gazed upon. (threechordsandthetruthuk)