b. 1976, Shropshire, England. Although he is a multi-instrumentalist, UK folk musician Kirkpatrick’s favoured instrument is the bouzouki. Benji is the son of renowned English folk musicians John Kirkpatrick and Sue Harris, and his entry into the recording business suitably came about on his father’s 1994 album Earthling. Benji subsequently formed the acoustic band the Hedgerows and toured around the UK and Europe, before launching his solo career in 1998 with Dance In The Shadow. The album demonstrated his multi-instrumental capabilities, with bouzouki, guitar and mandolin all to the fore on a lively outing.
During this period Kirkpatrick co-founded the acclaimed Dr. Faustus and also worked with Magpie Lane, the Oysterband, and his father’s five-piece ceilidh band, Mr. Gubbins’ Bicycle. In 2004 he helped co-found another highly rated young band, Bellowhead, and completed the recording of his second solo album. Half A Fruit Pie was a notable step on from Kirkpatrick’s debut, with a preponderance of original compositions and a more fluid playing style on show. Kirkpatrick’s concurrent work with folk contemporary Seth Lakeman spilled over onto his third album, 2008’s Boomerang, which opted for a more radio friendly approach and was notable for not featuring any traditional material.