Contemporary indie folk singer-songwriter and guitarist Benje Travis entrances audiences with his incredible voice and compelling tapestries of acoustic compositions. You could say a pure folk troubadour whose intimate performances fill rooms with sounds of musical poetry.
Benje’s song writing is raw and emotional, captivating, often dark and sometimes funny and accompanied by breezy sounds which serve to lighten melancholic moods and poignant lyrics.
His one-man show is beguiling and brilliant to hear and watch, as Benje uses his musicianship as a vehicle to talk to people about his acoustic “Love Earth Gang” movement.
Born in Surry Hills, Benje started playing the guitar at a very young age and started writing his own songs at eleven. Raised by a music-loving mother who exposed him to singer-songwriter artists from the sixties and seventies at an early age, he was subsequently strongly influenced by Bob Marley and the reggae movement
Playing guitar and stompbox, Benje Travis captures audience emotions and breaks away from the structural norms of live performance. “Sometimes one song will turn into two or two songs into one. I like to feel my way through rather than have a ridged plan. So sometimes I’ll play the guitar and then swap to keyboards, depends where the mood is.”
With an impressive number of shows now under his belt, the year's highlights have been the Wildwood Music Festival and Port Macquarie’s Tastings on the Hastings, seeing him play to over 2000 people and alongside artists such as Montaigne and Blue King Brown.
He has the wariness of a social and spiritual outsider who broods his way to graceful defiance. His songs will attach themselves to your heartstrings.
Dark Alley Collectables is an important part of the Port Macquarie organism.
Benje Travis owns Dark Alley Collectables, the funky records and collectables store that plays host to the Live Music Series “The Dark Alley Sessions”.
Every town needs a store where the grownups can find their old favourite vinyls, and the young’s can explore the wild subcultures they can get weird and dive into. Benje and his partner, Lisa have built this temple of nostalgia for all to enjoy.
Benje has played music for most of his life, starting when he was just a little Flynns Beach grommet.
You may have caught him around town playing his unique style of thumping acoustic with insightful lyrics… or thrashing in his slightly louder punk band, Merkin... where the lyrics are still insightful, but a little more about cutting off your own head!
In Benje’s Dark Alley Session, we are treated to two original tracks and a great cover of Tracey Chapman’s “Crossroads”, which fits Benje’s vocals like a warm, snug pair of slippers on a crisp winter morning. Both originals showcase his slick moves on guitar, dancing around that thumping, unique bassy rhythm, and his obvious talent for storytelling through lyrics.
Benje’s song writing gives you the feeling of sitting down on your nana’s lounge, flicking through an old, dusty family album, reminiscing on childhood memories you’d thought had slipped away. It feels warm and nostalgic, yet melancholic at the same time.
Thanks for giving this little town a good dose of culture!
This session concludes a SIX episode run, proudly sponsored by Port Macquarie Hastings Council.
Thank you for the support @pmhcouncil!
Enjoy the session!
Brad & Josh
Dark Alley Sessions
Audio - Josh Thompson
Video - Brad Collins
Proudly sponsored by Port Macquarie Hastings Council
Dark Alley Sessions
Dark Alley Collectables