Born in London, Ben Paley was surrounded by traditional music from the outset: his father (Tom Paley, one of the great figures of the American folk revival), mother (singer Claudia Gould) and step-father (Ron Gould, writer on jazz, country and folk music) were all enormous influences.
At 6 years old, Ben began playing the fiddle, taking formal violin lessons as well as learning traditional tunes and taking his place in the musical life of his family. When he was 9, they moved to Morganton, North Carolina, where Ben began to learn about harmony, improvisation, and playing nicely with others; and where he had the enormous privilege of studying with renowned Nashville session musician Jim Buchanan (who's played with everyone from Jim And Jesse to The Doors).
Three years later Ben and his family returned to England, and he discovered Swedish fiddle music and Punk Rock. Some years later he washed up in Brighton: hanging out at Irish sessions; busking; touring the UK, US and Europe; playing recording sessions, festivals and folk-clubs; and playing for more bands than he can possibly remember, including buskers Anton the Aardvark's Hot Knives and Cyril the Squirrel's Sock Suspenders, and the infamous death-metal-bluegrass outfit and festival favourites The Wild Turkey Brothers.