[Weekender] Elderly life has silver lining

Eric Benet promises ‘his very best’ at Seoul concert

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Published : 2011-07-13 18:45
Updated : 2011-07-13 21:59

Acclaimed American R&B singer-songwriter Eric Benet said Korean audiences will be able to see him pull off one of the best performances at his upcoming concert in Seoul in September.

Benet is to hold his third solo concert in Korea on Sept. 22 at Ax-Korea in Seoul.

He concert, originally scheduled for April, was postponed after the March earthquake and tsunami in Japan.

“What you can expect at my concert is a whole lot of positive emotion, a whole lot of feeling good music, and obviously, a whole lot of dance. You will experience Eric Benet at his very best,” Benet told The Korea Herald via email.
U.S. singer-songwriter Eric Benet who will perform at Ax-Korea on Sept. 22. (Private Curve)

Benet’s talent in songwriting and singing has been proved by his three nominations for Grammy Awards.

He released his fifth studio album “Lost in Time” last November. The first single “Sometimes I Cry” received good reviews in the U.S. and ranked first on the Urban Adult Contemporary chart. It also reached No. 16 on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-hop Songs chart.

When writing a song, honesty is the most significant factor for him, Benet said.

“I try to be very honest while creating music. When you hear great artists’ music, you could hear the music and feel the pain and the beauty in their life,” the 41-year-old said.

“When you read the lyrics, you would know that it all came from a very honest place.”

Benet debuted in 1996 with the first album “True To Myself” and started to earn fame three years later through “Spend My Life with You,” a song of the second album “A Day in the Life.” The song topped the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-pop chart for three weeks in 1999.

His fourth studio album “Love & Life” was nominated for Grammy’s Best R&B Album in 2009 and the song “You’re The Only One,” Best R&B Male Performance in the same year.

To Benet, music is like air.

“It is like asking a fish what water means to you. Can’t live without it,” he said.

His musical career has been inspired by many R&B artists including Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye and Al Green, Benet said.

He said he has heard Korean R&B singers and was impressed by them.

“Some are very soulful and I’d like to work with a Korean artist some day,” he said.

Benet said traveling and being away from his family and his daughter is the toughest challenge in leading a life as a singer-songwriter.

As for what is best about this lifestyle, he said “traveling to countries like Korea that I’ve always dreamed of visiting and being embraced by people that already know me because they know my music.”

Eric Benet’s “Live in Seoul 2011” will be held on Sept. 22 at 8 p.m. at Ax-Korea in Seoul. Tickets are priced 99,000 won, visit ticket.interpark.com to purchase. For details, call (02) 563-0595.

By Kim Yoon-mi (yoonmi@heraldcorp.com)

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