Signed to Suzuki Records, an independent Japanese label, Ben Kemp works with three Japanese musicians to create a unique Kiwi-Japanese folk fusion, coining the descriptive term Polyn’asian music (derived from Polynesian and Asian influences).
With Maori roots on his maternal side, and an upbringing on the North Island’s East Coast, Ben Kemp explores his Maori – NZ heritage as well as his nexus with the ocean, and fuses it with universal themes of family, love and loss, some drawn from experiences in Japan.
“'Ben Kemp has created something spectacular. Papatu Road' sounds unlike anything coming out of Aotearoa at present. And yet, it feels so natural. I'm surprised this kind of amalgamation hasn't occurred before” – NZ Musician
“Ben Kemp is the antithesis of the mainstream solo artists dominating the charts. He is not afraid of bringing out bold, original songs that are not necessarily being craved by audiences yet.” – Muzic.net.nz
“Ben Kemp is a rare find in the forest of emerging artists. Drawing on his skill as a poet as well as talented musician, Ben looks deep with his lyrics and the resulting sound is a Kiwi Jeff Buckley. High praise indeed. Thoroughly recommended.” – Roger Marbeck on Radio Pacific