Growing up on the banks of the Chatahoochee River, Ben Dukes was constantly surrounded by country and southern rock music. Whether it was Merle Haggard drifting back from the stereo in his mother's Oldsmobile, Hank Williams Jr crashing the dash of his Jeep, or Lynyrd Skynyrd cranking from a tail-gate boombox at a bonfire, Dukes was immersed in sound. When Dukes attended his first country concert, Garth Brooks, he was hooked on the raw power of the live show. "At the end of the day, if the crowd isn't entertained, if they arent moved, then what are we doing?" This is the question he asks himself every day. This is why he writes. This is why he sings. This is why he performs - to connect with those whom he otherwise could not.
He found this power of connection on the heels of his most painful loss, that of his father. In the days following his father's death, Dukes found himself confused and angry. A friend suggested that he talk to God. He could not. Instead, he took pen to paper and wrote exactly what he was feeling. What emerged was a song. That song, "I Can't Pray" would be the first song he would record, and the response was overwhelming. Since "I Can't Pray" was posted on the internet, it has been played over twenty thousand times; and a simple video, shot on a Canon Elph digital camera was played on GAC as part of their NEXT GAC STAR competition in 2009.
Since that competition, Dukes has gone on to play all around his transplanted home of Los Angeles, California and neighboring states. From acoustic performances on corner stages, he has worked his way through many of the dives and clubs in Hollywood, played an opening slot for legendary band Asleep at the Wheel at The Key Club, and has performed multiple times at the legendary House of Blues on Sunset. He continues to bring his infectious energy and knack for storytelling to the stage, always seeking new faces in his ever-growing audience. Whether it be the working man's honky-tonk standard "When Do We Start Drinkin," the reflective military march, "Walkin Thru Hell," or the contemplative tale of good gone wrong, "The Lord Knew Me First," Dukes delivers each with passion, knowing that there's very likely someone in the crowd who needs to hear that song. As long as there are ears to hear, and stories to be told, Ben Dukes is bound to wander down this long and lovely road.