Legendary Music Producer, Arranger And Composer Benjamin Wright To Appear With The Philly POPS
L.A.-based arranging and composing phenomenon Benjamin Wright will perform with The Philly POPS and his all-star band of musicians on October 20, 2018 at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts in the show, Experience Benjamin Wright, a Heritage Music Group production.
During the performance, Wright will showcase his vast body of work across his fifty-year career. Wright has worked with iconic artists like Michael Jackson, Earth, Wind & Fire, Justin Timberlake and Frank Ocean. He conducted the iconic sound of Barry White's "You're The First, The Last, My Everything," and was the music director for Aretha Franklin, The Temptations, and Gladys Knight.
At Experience Benjamin Wright, audiences can expect towering string arrangements made famous by these great artists.
Before the show, Wright will host a masterclass on October 20, and on October 22 launch a new Speaker Series with a question and answer segment with notation experts on hand. This masterclass is geared toward music students-some of whom may not be well-versed in reading, writing or arranging music. In the masterclass, Wright will stress the importance of reading, writing and arranging music, and the doors that these skills can open.
For generations, Mr. Benjamin Wright Jr. has established himself as a true staple in the fabric of music. Throughout his career, Mr. Wright has encompassed the roles of producer, music arranger, composer, writer, conductor, and music director.
Benjamin Wright embarked on his first major musical tour with rhythm and blues icon Ted Taylor. His subsequent success within the industry took him on the road with James Brown, Otis Redding, Billy Stewart and Gladys Knight and The Pips. In 1969, Wright worked as a copyist for notable musical arrangers such as Charles Stepney, Gene Barge, Donny Hathaway and Richard Evans. Concurrently, Wright performed with Pieces of Peace, a group of musicians who recorded music sessions for Jackie Wilson, The Chi-Lites, Jerry Butler, Curtis Mayfield and The Impressions.
In 1975, Wright moved to Los Angeles, California, and became the musical director for The Temptations, Gladys Knight and The Pips, Aretha Franklin, and Barry White and The Love Unlimited Orchestra. In 1979, Wright acted as the string arranger for Michael Jackson's first solo album, Off the Wall, where he met producer Quincy Jones. Between 1982 and 1983, Wright opened the Ritesonian Recording Studio, and in 1987, he went back on the road as the musical director for Gladys Knight and The Pips.
Within the last decade, Wright has written various arrangements for Outkast, Justin Timberlake, Mary J. Blige, Beyoncé and Stevie Wonder to name a few. He's continued to work with Justin Timberlake on his subsequent Grammy nominated albums FutureSex/LoveSounds and the 20/20 Experience.
About Heritage Music Group
Heritage Music Group is dedicated to the orchestral presentation of the rich musical history of American pop, R&B, blues, and jazz, showcasing the work of the authentic composers and arrangers from these vibrant traditions. Each performance is tailored to engage and educate all ages.
Heritage Music Group concerts are designed to engage a new audience in the orchestral experience by performing popular music that relates to all generations, allowing parents, grandparents, and children to attend an elegant evening/matinee with accomplished musicians while being educated by the original composers and arrangers. Hearing personal stories of how each composition came to be, audiences will walk away educated, enlightened, and wanting more.
Heritage Music Group education is designed to establish the fact that music literacy is not only reading, but listening, reading, and writing. Every child should know how to read and write music to unlock the potential musical genius that lies within us all. The Heritage Music program includes three major components of each presentation: The Speaker Series, Student Interactive Concert, and Masterclass video presentation.
About The Philly POPS
The Philly POPS, the largest standalone pops orchestra in the United States, delights audiences with the inspired performance of American popular music. The POPS celebrates this distinctive musical heritage through an expanding repertoire of innovative concert performances and a robust set of educational and engagement initiatives.
Now celebrating its 40th Anniversary Season, the POPS, the official POPS orchestra of Pennsylvania and the City of Philadelphia's partner in civic celebration, serves a consistently growing audience of over 200,000 annually. Music Director Michael Krajewski and the 65-piece Philly POPS orchestra keep listeners tapping their toes to an impressive repertoire of songs from American traditional music up through to today's chart-toppers. The Philly POPS BIG Band, an 18-20 piece ensemble performing a rock and rhythm and blues repertoire, premiered in 2017 to enthusiastic response at the July 4 Welcome America Concert on the Parkway.
Outside the concert hall, free Salute Series performances - including Memorial Salute, July 3 POPS on Independence, July 4 POPS on the Parkway and the I'll Be Home for Christmas: A Salute to the Military and First Responders concert - celebrate the American tradition of service around important national holidays. POPS in Schools enhances music education for Philadelphia School District students; POPS Outside brings POPS music to local communities. The Philly POPS performs as a founding resident company of The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, and at venues throughout the mid-Atlantic region.