Benjamin Francis Leftwich (born 4 September 1989) is an English singer-songwriter from York.
Leftwich began playing at the age of ten and grew up listening to The Rolling Stones and Nina Simone; later discovering Nick Drake, Bob Dylan, and Elliott Smith. He cites Arcade Fire, Ryan Adams, and Bruce Springsteen as inspirations.
Leftwich was educated at Hempland Primary School (a state school), and then at Bootham School.
Life and career
Leftwich's debut album, the Ian Grimble-produced Last Smoke Before The Snowstorm, was released in July 2011. The Fly called it "a majestic debut" whilst The Sunday Times cited Leftwich as "a serious new talent". The Skinny described it as "occasionally a bit O.C. soundtrack...[but] enjoyable throughout", while the Sunday Express called it "lovely" but "increasingly repetitive over the course of 10 tracks". Hazel Sheffield, writing in The Guardian, gave it a 3/5 rating, as did David Pollock, writing for The Scotsman, who drew comparisons to Damien Rice and José González, but also stated "sadly there are also heavy hints of Chris Martin at his most mawkish".