- BENJAMIN SCHEUER
The first thing people tell you about Benjamin Scheuer; singer, songwriter, garlanded playwright, children’s book author, is that he never goes anywhere without his guitar. For those assuming this defines a wandering minstrel, they would be some way wide of the mark. Scheuer is, indeed, imbued with that tradition of singer as social observer and commentator but there is no Dogma-esque belief in the purity of the acoustic expression. Scheuer’s music, currently being recorded for a debut album for Canvasback / Parlophone Records later in the year, may begin with the folk tradition as reimagined by the likes of Paul Simon and Bob Dylan, but transforms that starting point into a modernist statement, filtered through glitches and awash with synthesised effect and otherworldly melody.
Benjamin Scheuer’s journey to this debut is also not your standard singer / songwriter story. Well known throughout the theatre world on both sides of the Atlantic for his one-man show THE LION (2014), (which delivered a clutch of awards including a Drama Desk Award for “Outstanding Solo Performance”, an off-West End Award for “Best New Musical”, and an ASCAP Cole Porter Award for Songwriting), Scheuer is also a published children’s author, with his wife Jemima Williams, of Hibernate With Me and Hundred Feet Tall for Simon & Schuster; and the author of Between Two Spaces, which documented his diagnosis with – and successful treatment for – stage IV Hodgkins Lymphoma.
Scheuer is a teller of stories, his own and others. Those stories are about more than a simple narrative, finding magic in both in the everyday and the extraordinary. As with all notable writers, he is both a great listener and a talented orator, bringing his subjects to life and finding the common threads among their personal experiences.
Debut single “I Am Samantha” was inspired and guided by the story of his friend’s journey to transition as told to him in his favourite coffee shop in the West Village, NYC, his former home; Scheuer is now a resident of London.
The song details a road occasionally bleak but ultimately inspiring, telling the story of a woman born a man, and her struggle to attain her true identity in the face of parental and societal rejection. To fully realise the track, Scheuer engaged transgender director T Cooper (Man Made) who brought together a fully transgender cast and LGBTQ crew for both a music video centred on the real experience of transgender life, and a making-of-documentary telling the individual stories of the cast to further contextualise and enlighten the audience.
“I Am Samantha”, the track and the films, are released on 31st March, International Transgender Day of Visibility. Further music from Benjamin Scheuer will follow throughout 2020.
Download/Stream “I Am Samantha”: https://benjaminscheuer.lnk.to/IAmSamanthaLSBenjaminScheuer_NewsletterOptIn_CanvasbackArtistPageSignUp_Website6034494
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