The Ben Babylon Band (BBB) will help kick off the 2011 Malibu Music Festival with an opening night performance on Monday, September 19, from 7:00-9:00 p.m. at The Sunset Restaurant, one of several venues participating in the week-long celebration of emerging musical talent. The band will perform again on Tuesday, September 20 from noon-2:00 p.m. at the Malibu Country Mart, and on Wednesday, September 21 from 8:00-10:00 p.m. at the Malibu Inn, which has played host to such stars as Neil Young, Eric Clapton, Tom Petty, Kid Rock and others.
Babylon, 13, is the son of the late Guy Babylon, who was Elton John's keyboardist and arranger for 21 years. The younger Babylon, an award-winning keyboardist and pianist, is working on his first album, titled "Dreams for Sale," in collaboration with members of the Elton John Band: Davey Johnstone, Nigel Olsson, John Mahon and Bob Birch. The album is expected to be released early in 2012, with a single, "Contradiction," to be released this fall.
"We'll be playing songs from the new album at the festival, as well as some great cover tunes," Babylon said."I can't wait to introduce my new band and hear what people think of the music."
The Ben Babylon Band consists of Babylon on keyboards and lead vocals, Alex Arnaout on bass and background vocals, and Jagger Krusen on drums. Joining BBB as a special guest on Monday and Wednesday is singer/songwriter Chasen Hampton, who has performed with Babylon at other venues, including the Ventura County Fair, The Mint, House of Blues, and The Canyon Club in Agoura Hills. HoneyHeart, a folk duo, will appear with Babylon on Tuesday. Malibu-based musician Pamela Duke-Van Ierland will perform between Babylon's sets on Monday.
Other artists scheduled to perform at various times and locations include Jessica Mellott, The Flutterbies, Reggie Woods Jazz Trio, Hannah Mulholland & Carson Higgins, Karl Kerfoot Trio featuring Melinda Sullivan, Classical Music Award-winner Benjamin Krasner, and many more. Most performances are free, but there is an admission charge for the classical concert featuring Krasner, scheduled for Wednesday, September 21 at the Malibu Stage Company, and for the Malibu Music Awards program on Saturday, September 24, which will honor those who have made significant contributions to the music industry.
This year's award recipients include singer/actress Lainie Kazan, actor/musician Frank Stallone, actor/singer Robert Davi, rap artists Shwayze and Cisco Adler, singer/songwriter Peter Torsiello, inspirational R&B artist Abraham McDonald, singer/songwriter Trevor McShane and others. Guitarist/singer Mike Pinera, formerly with the classic rock bands Iron Butterfly and Blues Image, will receive the Legendary Rocker Award. Guy Babylon performed with Pinera in the 1980s, before joining the Elton John Band.
The Ben Babylon Band will perform on Monday, September 19 from 7:00-9:00 p.m. at The Sunset Restaurant, 6800 Westward Beach Road, Malibu, CA 90265. Reservations are recommended, and can be made by calling the restaurant at 310-589-2027. The band will perform Tuesday, September 20 from noon-2:00 p.m. at the Malibu Country Mart, and on Wednesday, September 21 from 8:00-10:00 p.m. at the Malibu Inn, 22969 Pacific Coast Hwy.
For complete festival details, visit the festival website at www.malibumusicawards.com.
Babylon and Hampton will be interviewed live on "Actors E" podcast on September 19 from 10:00-11:00 a.m. Pacific time. The interview can be seen at www.ActorsE.com.
More information about Ben Babylon is available at www.BenBabylonMusic.com.