Ben Davis

British cellist, member of Basquiat Strings

Ben Davis


Ben Davis is a cellist from the United Kingdom known for his improvisation. His group Basquiat Strings was nominated for the Mercury Prize in 2007. He is a member of the F-IRE Collective.

Ben Davis' self-stated aim is to make "alternative string music that people want to listen to". His group, Basquiat Strings, originated as a standard string quartet (two violins, a viola and a cello). Only later did cellist Davis decide to add double bass "to strengthen the rhythmic accompaniment". Basquiat Strings were nominated for the 2007 Mercury Prize.

Ben Davis studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and later at the Banff School of Fine Arts with Dave Holland.

He has since pursued a varied musical career encompassing classical, world, pop, early music and jazz. He has performed with Django Bates, Hassan Erraji, The Dufay Collective, Evan Parker, Christine Tobin, Steve Buckley, Huw Warren, Jason Yarde, Kylie Minogue, Julian Joseph, the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra and the R. S. C. He has recorded with Claire Martin, Jamiroquai, Ingrid Laubrock, Oriole, Julia Biel, Patricia Kass, D-Influence and the Ben Davis Group, which was featured on BBC Radio 3's Jazz On 3 programme. He recently completed a world tour with the French super-star, Patricia Chass and also formed The Jazz Cello Trio featuring Phil Robson. Ben Davis also teaches jazz cello and has led workshops for kids.

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