A unique blend of story and song.
A folksinger in every sense of the word.

Ben Traverse playing at Stormcloud Brewing Co.

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Ben Traverse is a traditional folk singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and member of the Earthwork Music Collective with deep roots in Michigan.

Traverse has spent the better part of a decade cutting their teeth with many prominent forces in Michigan’s folk scene. They found their passion steeping in the rich history of traditional folk music. Drawing inspiration from Pete Seeger, Alan Lomax, and countless others, Traverse brings a unique, youthful enthusiasm to a rich and storied musical tradition.

With a 300+ song repertoire played solo on both guitar and clawhammer banjo or with a band, Traverse can mold their set for just about any occasion:

  • Traditional Irish music / St. Patrick’s Day Party
  • Sea Shanty Sing-a-longs
  • Traditional children’s music
  • Educational sets focusing on the history of the songs, the cultures that inspired them, and how they relate to us today
  • Old time / bluegrass gospel and spirituals
  • Facilitated bluegrass or folk song jams

Notable Venues:

The Acorn, Three Oaks The Alluvion, Traverse City*
The Clover Room, Kalamazoo Goshen Brewing Co., Goshen, IN
Ludington Area Center for the Arts Midtown, Grand Rapids
Ramsdell Theatre, Manistee Robin Theatre, Lansing
White Horse, Black Mountain, NC 20 Front Street, Lake Orion
*w/ the Earthwork Collective

I also love to play museums, libraries, schools, farmers markets, and other community spaces!

Notable Festivals:

Earthwork Harvest Gathering Emerald Isle Irish Feile
HollerFest Hoxeyville Music Festival (w/ Seth Bernard)
Michigan Renaissance Festival Smiling Acres Music Festival
Spirit of the Woods Folk Festival

Some Artists I’ve Shared the Stage With:

The Accidentals The Crane Wives Dave Bruzza (of Greensky Bluegrass)
Good Morning Bedlam Joshua Davis Mark Lavengood
May Erlewine The Ragbirds Seth Bernard
The Wildwoods

The Band:

The Ben Traverse Band is a rotating cast of friends, partners, and peers. These are some of the folks that have accompanied me:

Activism:

Accolades:

  • 2019 2nd best musical act in Manistee County – News Advocate Readers’ Choice Awards

Testimonials:

  • “Ben is the modern day Pete Seeger. He’s a musical archeologist who writes songs that sound like they’re from a hundred years ago.” –The Accidentals
  • “As a musician, Traverse is rooted in the past, forward thinking, and fully present. His foundation is solid and he cares deeply about music and people.” –Seth Bernard
  • “Ben’s passion for music is unmistakable. From the onset of the first note, Traverse creates magic! The future is bright with this one.” –Mark Lavengood
  • “This is a well-researched, well-sung collection, from someone who is passionate about ‘preserving musical traditions from years gone by’, and it does exactly what it says on the tin.” –The Living Tradition, Scotland (Old Time American Music album review)
  • “‘Danny Boy’ and ‘The Parting Glass’ are likely some of the most familiar tracks for listeners and, despite not having written the lyrics, Traverse and Veine deliver them with so much emotion that one might imagine they did in another life.” –Local Spins (Me Grief and Tears to Smother Review)

Discography: