b. George Benson, 22nd March 1943, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, U.S.A.
George Benson was born in the Hill District of Pittsburgh in 1943.
As a child he attended the old Connelly High School in the town.
Over the last half a century, George Benson has bridged many genre's, allowing himself to move effortlessly from straight ahead jazz to Soul singer and other genre's in between.
At the age of 11 he had recorded a first side ('It Should Have Been Me') for a local group.
Wes Montgomery passed away in 1969, and the jazz pundits predicted that George would follow in his shoes.
the new boss guitar of george benson - 1964 / it's uptown - 1966 / giblet gravy - 1968 / goodies - 1969
At the age of 21, George recorded his first album as the front man, 'The New Boss Guitar', with Brother Jack McDuff on organ.
On George's early albums, he, not only had Herbie Hancock in the studio on session chores, Earl Klugh, Miles Davis (George played guitar on 'Paraphernalia', which appeared on the Miles' 1967 Columbia album, 'Miles in the Sky') and Joe Farrell were also in attendance.
the other side of abbey road - 1970 / white rabbit - 1971
One early Benson Seventies release was the album 'White Rabbit', originally written and recorded by San Francisco rock group Jefferson Airplane, which was released in November 1971.
Four of these early sets were produced by Creed Taylor, who signed Benson to his own CTI label in 1971.
bad benson - 1974 / breezin' - 1976
Following the success of George's album, 'Bad Benson', which reached the U.S. album lists and, via the dance floors, (the song 'Supership' did well on the European charts), George negotiated a contract with Warner Brothers Records.
The resulting album 1976's 'Breezin' (featuring the Bobby Womack penned title track and the Leon Russell penned 'This Masquerade') won Grammy awards that year.
Ironically, George had been discouraged up until this time, from using his singing skills, mainly as the company decision makers felt he wasn't competent enough vocally, and he should stick to playing the guitar.
Warners then obtained the rights to George's earlier product, overseeing the re-releases of albums such as 'The Other Side Of Abbey Road', a track for track interpretation of the entire Beatles album.
in flight - 1977 / the greatest - 1977
George released 'In Flight' the following year, which featured his take on the Nat King Cole standard 'Nature Boy' and the War song 'The World Is A Ghetto'.
'The Greatest Love Of All' (from the Muhammed Ali biopic 'The Greatest'), reaffirmed his blossoming career, not only on the Jazz stage, but now on the Soul and Dancefloor genre's additionally.
weekend in l.a. - 1978 / livin' inside your love - 1979
After the success of the double album 'Livin' Inside Your Love' (which featured an uptempo version of L.T.D.'s 'Love Ballad' amongst other songs), George released a live album entitled 'Weekend In LA', which featured a live take on the song 'On Broadway' (the album also winning a Grammy).
give me the night - 1980 / stay tuned (chet atkins collaboration) - 1985
The album featured the same musicians, whom had steered the Michael Jackson album 'Off The Wall' to it's huge success a year earlier.
'Give Me The Night' featured the popular title track, 'Love X's Love', 'On Broadway', 'Moody's Mood' and the Heatwave song 'Star Of The Story' (Temperton re-allocating the song from their own 'Central Heating' set).
1981's 'Turn Your Love Around' became a big hit for George (taken from a mainly 'Greatest Hits' set, which also included a couple of new studio recordings).
In 1985, George and guitarist Chet Atkins recorded a collaboration on Chet's set 'Stay Tuned', featuring 'Sunrise', one of two songs from the duo.
in your eyes - 1983 / 20/20 - 1985 / while the city sleeps - 1986 / collaborations - 1987 / twice the love - 1988 and tenderly - 1989
Throughout the Eighties, George consolidated his Soulful side, releasing the albums ' In Your Eyes' (1983, featuring the Womack and Womack song 'New Day'), '20/20' (1985, featuring 'Feel Like Makin' Love' and 'Lady ove Me One More Time'), 'While The City Sleeps' (1986, featuring 'Kisses In The Moonlight', 'Shiver' and 'Love Is Here Tonight'), ' Twice The Love' (1988, featuring 'Let's Do It Again') and 'Tenderly' (1989, featuring an excellent take on the Beatles 'Here, There and Everywhere') amongst others.
In 1990, he staged a full-length collaboration with the Count Basie Orchestra, accompanied by a sell-out UK tour.
absolute benson - 2000 / givin' it up - 2006
In 2000, he merged his jazz talents with producers Masters At Work for 'Absolute Benson', with whom he had worked on the Nu Yorican Soul project two years previously.
The album featured his version, of the Donny Hathaway song, 'The Ghetto' and 'El Barrio' highlighting.
George toured with Al Jarreau in the U.S.A., South Africa, Australia and New Zealand, promoting their 2006 album 'Givin' It Up'.
In 2008, George continues to tour the world performing and is an active member of the Jehovah's Witnesses.
songs and stories - 2009
In 2009, a new album is due, entitled 'Songs and Stories', with David Paich and Steve Lukather of Toto fame joining on artistic chores.
with the Brother Jack McDuff Quartet:
The New Boss Guitar Of George Benson (Prestige Records 1964)
It's Uptown (Columbia Records 1966)
Most Exciting (Columbia Records 1966)
Benson Burner (Columbia Records 1966)
The George Benson Cook Book (Columbia Records 1967)
Giblet Gravy (Verve Records 1968)
Goodies (Verve Records 1969)
Shape Of Things To Come (A&M Records 1969)
Tell It Like It Is (A&M Records 1969)
The Other Side Of Abbey Road (A&M Records 1970)
Beyond The Blue Horizon (CTI Records 1970)
White Rabbit (CTI Records 1973)
Body Talk (CTI Records 1974)
Bad Benson (CTI Records 1974)
Supership (CTI Records 1975)
Breezin' (Warners Records 1976)
Good King Bad (CTI Records 1976)
with Joe Farrell:
Benson And Farrell (CTI Records 1976)
George Benson In Concert: Carnegie Hall (CT1 Records 1977)
In Flight (Warners Records 1977)
with Jack McDuff:
George Benson And Jack McDuff (Prestige Records 1977)
Weekend In L.A. (Warners Records 1978)
Living Inside Your Love (Warners Records 1979)
Give Me The Night (Warners Records 1980)
Blue Benson (Polydor Records 1983)
In Your Eyes (Warners Records 1983)
Stormy Weather (Columbia Records 1984)
20/20 (Warners Records 1985)
The Electrifying George Benson (Affinity Records 1985)
In Concert (Premier Records 1985)
Love Walked In (Platinum Records 1985)
While The City Sleeps (Warners Records 1986)
with Earl Klugh:
Collaboration (Warners Records 1987)
Love For Sale (Masters Records 1988)
Twice The Love (Warners Records 1988)
Detroit's George Benson (Parkwood Records 1988)
Tenderly (Warners Records 1989)
with the Count Basie Orchestra:
Big Boss Band (Warners Records 1990)
Lil' Darlin' (Thunderbolt 1990)
Live At The Casa Caribe Vols 1-3 (Jazz View Records 1992)
Love Remembers (Warners Records 1993)
That's Right (MCA Records 1996)
Absolute Benson (GRP Records 2000)
Irreplaceable (GRP Records 2004)
Songs and Stories (Concord Records 2009)
Guitar Man (Concord Records 2011)
Inspiration, A Tribute To Nat King Cole (Concord Records 2013)