Valdosta Daily Times

Features

March 27, 2012

South Georgian busy as Been Jammin

VALDOSTA — South Georgia-based performer Been Jammin is a marketing machine.

He has cigarette lighters and pens touting his website, reading: Follow me @ iBeen_Jammin. He has released a free preview CD featuring a few songs that will appear on his finished CD, expected to drop in May. He has placed these free preview CDs in various convenience stores throughout Valdosta and Lowndes County.

He regularly performs in Tallahassee and Orlando clubs. He performs at various events, trying to introduce himself and his music to as many people as possible.

On the CD, he mentions his Facebook page, the website. He even shares his phone number.

The marketing is working. People are picking up the preview CD. They are visiting the Facebook page and the website.

But it’s not just the marketing. It’s the music.

Been Jammin’s music matches the hype.

Been Jammin is the stage name of Benjamin Williams. He has pursued music for the past eight years, seriously for the past two years. He synthesizes numerous styles, blending his original words and mixed beats with hip-hop, rock, pop, R&B, rap with a trace of gospel.

He’s pushed his music since graduating Valdosta State University in 2010 with a sociology degree. The sociology degree has informed his marketing campaign. Yet, it’s interesting to learn he spent little time with any popular music as a child.

He grew up the oldest of six children, the son of Ben and Linda Williams of Boston, Ga. A devout Christian, Linda Williams did not allow her children to listen to popular music. Young Benjamin heard gospel and Christian music, but music was heard and played within the family. His mother sings. His grandmother and uncle were musicians.

Young Benjamin received his first taste of performing as a child. He recalls a sixth-grade talent contest where he performed a “Jesus rap ... about Jesus is coming back,” he says, adding he enjoyed the rush of being on stage. And the acceptance.

By high school, he had discovered other musical forms. His parents became more accepting of other types of music as their children reached adulthood. Benjamin Williams refers to his parents as his biggest fans.

Those early lessons have stayed with him though. His music remains positive and upbeat. He believes music can lift people up, inspire while being fun and entertaining.

He tries keeping everything positive, too, because he has an example to set for his 5-year-old daughter, McKenzie Williams.

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