Acclaimed pianist, violinist & singer Benet McLean is one of the most highly regarded musicians in contemporary British jazz.
His musical depth and exploration of the boundaries between musical genres make him a unique and constantly evolving artist. Inspired in his teens by the great bebop artists of the 1940s, Benet's playing today reflects his early inspirations while also embracing a wide range of other musical influences.
Known best in previous years for his piano, keyboard and vocal work, Benet has more recently returned to his first instrument, the violin, fast emerging as a virtuoso violinist of extraordinary versatility. Whether playing jazz, funk or even classical, his warm soulful energy and musical wizardry continue to gain him new fans wherever he plays.
A gifted composer and arranger, Benet performs and collaborates with many different artists. Recent collaborations have included heading up the string quartet on Partikel’s acclaimed String Theory album along with violin performances on a series of live shows to promote the album. Benet also recently recorded violin on the film soundtrack to The Man from U.N.C.L.E. in collaboration with producer Troy Miller. Live work with his own band has most recently focused on exploration of the use of electronic effects on violin to create a hybrid sound.
Benet has been playing music since the age of 3 years old when he first persuaded his parents to buy him a violin, and he undertook several years of classical training before turning his attentions to jazz. Some of the many artists Benet has played and toured with, both in jazz and other fields, include Omar, Dennis Rollins (see album Make Your Move), Sir Simon Rattle, Dave O’Higgins, TY, Steve Williamson, Carleen Anderson, Jean Toussaint, Tommy Smith, Cleveland Watkiss, Yellow Station Blue, Phillip Bent, Orphy Robinson, Kevin Haynes (see album Ori Ire), Roachford, Maxi Jazz (Faithless), Loose Tubes and Don Lusher.