Ben Weinman

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Ben Weinman
The Dillinger Escape Plan - Wacken Open Air 2017 11.jpg
Weinman performing at Wacken Open Air 2017
Background information
Birth name Benjamin A. Weinman
Born (1975-08-08) August 8, 1975 (age 43)
Morris Plains, New Jersey
Genres Mathcore, hardcore punk, heavy metal, experimental rock, progressive rock
Occupation(s) Musician
Instruments Guitar, programming, keyboards, piano, bass, drums, vocals
Years active 1997–present
Labels Season of Mist, Party Smasher Inc., Relapse, Epitaph
Associated acts The Dillinger Escape Plan, Giraffe Tongue Orchestra, Kimbra, The Prodigy, Suicidal Tendencies, Cougrr

Benjamin A. Weinman (born August 8, 1975) is an American musician, most notable for being the lead guitarist for the band the Dillinger Escape Plan. He was the founder and sole constant member through the band's career (1997-2017).

Weinman was named one of SPIN Magazine's 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time[1] and one of the 20 Most Influential Metal Guitarists Of The Modern Era by VH1.[2] Weinman was named one of Guitar World Magazine's 50 fastest guitar players of all time alongside guitar players such as Eddie Van Halen and Les Paul.[3] He was named one of Guitar World's Top 25 Cult Guitarists in 2009,[4] and one of the top modern Metal Guitar players by MetalSucks.[5] Weinman has also been listed on as an example of today's most important musicians under their definition of "guitarist" and was named one Alternative Press Magazine's "10 Favorite Guitar Slingers".[6]

Early life

Weinman grew up in Morris Plains, New Jersey.[7] He is of Austrian-Jewish and Polish-Jewish/Austrian descent through his grandparents who fled to the United States before The Holocaust. Weinman's family was not actively observant but he grew up "with a real appreciation of the culture of Judaism".[8] He was diagnosed with attention deficit disorder (ADD) as a child.[9][10] Weinman also suffered from bullying at the time.[11] He later stated that "music saved his life" because it helped him to discover new ways of learning, make friends and it gave him a sense of purpose.[12]

Weinman attended Fairleigh Dickinson University in Madison, New Jersey where he first received a degree in psychology in 2000 and then in corporate communications, a field in which he worked for some time afterwards at a web company.[13][14]


The Dillinger Escape Plan

Weinman and Greg Puciato of The Dillinger Escape Plan

Weinman played in some bands from New Jersey and in 1996 he founded the hardcore punk act Arcane along with Chris Pennie on drums, Dimitri Minakakis on vocals, Bruce Fulton on bass and Brad McMannand on second vocals. He describes the group as a "lost cause" due to their lack of innovation. After a few months, they turned around its style, with Adam Doll replacing McMann and Derek Brantley taking the place of Fulton. Eventually, Arcane morphed into the Dillinger Escape Plan in 1997.[14] Weinman gradually shifted his focus on being a full-time musician and eventually quit his corporate job.[13]

Weinman has been involved in the production of all the band's releases since their self-titled debut EP, as well as various other musical works. Weinman has self-managed or has been involved with the management of The Dillinger Escape Plan since the band's inception. Known for his outspoken views on the music industry, he has contributed to various publications and spoken at universities and conferences on the subjects of music production and the music business.[15] Weinman's business techniques and philosophies have been discussed, and featured, in publications such as Forbes,[16] the Huffington Post,[17] and Bloomberg Businessweek.[18]

On February 6, 2012, Weinman appeared on the VH1 series Metal Evolution in the final episode on progressive metal[19] where The Dillinger Escape Plan was quoted[clarification needed] as being "the world's most dangerous band".

The band's second full-length album, Miss Machine, was the first album released by record label Relapse Records to make the Billboard charts. Weinman's first full-length studio album with The Dillinger Escape Plan, entitled Calculating Infinity, was listed in the book The Top 500 Heavy Metal Albums of All Time by Martin Popoff. Calculating Infinity was also named one of "100 best rock albums of all time" by Kerrang magazine, who presented Weinman with a spirit of independence award.

Other projects

He is currently the manager for two times Grammy award-winning singer Kimbra who he also collaborated with on her second studio album entitled The Golden Echo.[20][21]

In 2012, Weinman founded the group Giraffe Tongue Orchestra. In 2016, he released the debut album Broken Lines with it.[22]

Weinman collaborated with rapper Wyclef Jean, contributing drums to a song which has not been released yet.[23] Weinman also composed the score for the 2014 film Alien Abduction.

Weinman has performed with acts such as Nine Inch Nails and System of a Down and in 2017, Weinman performed as a live guitarist/bassist for the electronic ensemble The Prodigy. He also joined Suicidal Tendencies as a fill-in guitarist on their summer 2018 tour.[24]

Influences and guitar technique

Ben Weinman cited John McLaughlin, Robert Fripp, Greg Ginn and Stevie Ray Vaughan as his biggest influences.[25] He also mentioned Marty Friedman of Megadeth as one of the first musicians that led him into investigating more eclectic types of guitar work.[26] Weinman acknowledges Apocalypse by McLaughlin's Mahavishnu Orchestra as the album that changed his life, stating that "It was a huge part of what led me to make Dillinger".[27]


At NAMM 2014 ESP announced the release of Weinman's first signature guitar, the BW-1, which is based on the company's PS-1 "Xtone" model. He is also known for frequently playing the ESP H and MH series. Weinman has been seen using a variety of amps in the studio, ranging from a Bogner Uberschall, a Laney GH50L and a Marshall JCM, but he mainly uses Mesa/Boogie Triple Rectifiers and a Mark V for live performances. In addition to playing guitar, Weinman occasionally plays a Fender Precision Bass in live performances with The Prodigy.

Personal life

Ben Weinman is married to a surgeon and he has a stepson and a daughter.[28][29] Following the disbandment of The Dillinger Escape Plan, he established an animal sanctuary on his home in New Jersey.[30]

Weinman has supported the You Rock Foundation which seeks to spread awareness about depression and appeared in one of its video campaigns.[31] He has been vocal about his choice not to drink, smoke or use other recreational drugs and described himself as straight edge for many years, but no longer does so as of 2016.[32][33][34] Weinman follows a pescetarian lifestyle.[35]


With The Dillinger Escape Plan

With Giraffe Tongue Orchestra

  • Broken Lines (2016)


Year Artist or band Song Release Additional information
2007 Zach Hill and Benjamin Weinman Experiment[36] "Untitled" Available on Ben Weinman's Myspace page[37]
2009 Ephel Duath "Bark Loud" Through My Dog's Eyes Contributed programming
2012 For Sleeping or Jumping[38] "Beardrops" Dead Languages Contributed synth and drum programming
2013 Ben Weinman and Kim Thayil "Nanna Banana" Mansoor, Weinman, & Abasi EP Part of Guitar World's subscription offer.[39]
2013 Ben Weinman and Dweezil Zappa "Vices" Mansoor, Weinman, & Abasi EP Part of Guitar World's subscription offer.[39]
2014 Kimbra "Sugar Lies" The Golden Echo Contributed guitar


Year Artist or band Song Album
2007 The Secret Handshake "Too Young (Dillinger Escape Plan Remix)" Summer of '98
2008 Thrice "Digital Sea (Dillinger Remix)" Come All You Weary
2008 Lil Wayne "Mr. Carter (Go Harder Remix)"
2009 Candiria "Paradigm Shift (Ben Weinman Ignite Remix)" Toying With the Insanities: Volume II
2009 Bring Me the Horizon "No Need For Introductions, I've Read About Girls Like You on the Backs of Toilet Doors (Benjamin Weinman)" Suicide Season: Cut Up!
2010 Violent Soho "Jesus Stole My Girlfriend (Dillinger Escape Plan Remix)"
2010 Iwrestledabearonce "Tastes Like Kevin Bacon (The Benjamin Weinman Remix)" It's All Remixed
2011 As I Lay Dying "Wrath Upon Ourselves (Benjamin Weinman Remix)" Decas
2011 Whitechapel "This Is Exile (Ben Weinman remix)" Recorrupted
2012 Lacuna Coil "Trip the Darkness (Ben Weinman remix)" Underworld Awakening (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)


  1. ^ Nothing found for Articles Spins 100 Greatest Guitarists All Time?page=3
  2. ^ "20 Most Influential Metal Guitarists Of The Modern Era". Retrieved March 16, 2017.
  3. ^ "50 Fastest Guitarists of All Time". Guitar World. Future US, Inc. November 20, 2008. Retrieved June 29, 2009.
  4. ^ di Perna, Alan; Gill, Chris; Grow, Kory; Lalaina, Joe; Scapelliti, Christopher (May 26, 2009). "Cult Leaders". Guitar World. Future US, Inc. Archived from the original on May 31, 2009. Retrieved June 29, 2009.
  5. ^ "#13: BEN WEINMAN (THE DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN)". May 18, 2011. Retrieved March 16, 2017.
  6. ^ "Features - Alternative Press". Retrieved March 16, 2017.
  7. ^ Garcia, Alfa. "Morris Plains-based metal rockers The Dillinger Escape Plan will perform in Manhattan", The Record (Bergen County), March 11, 2010. Accessed May 19, 2016. "Wilson and bandmates Greg Puciato, Jeff Tuttle, Billy Rymer and Ben Weinman (founding member and Morris Plains native) spend their performances dodging head stocks, guitars and body parts, at the same time challenging their listeners to participate."
  8. ^ Brinn, David (October 2010). "Fastest guitar in the West". The Jerusalem Post. London (published November 1, 2010). Archived from the original on December 10, 2017. Retrieved December 10, 2017.
  9. ^ Von Bader, David (December 15, 2016). "Dillinger Escape Plan's Swan Song". Premier Guitar. p. 3. Retrieved December 29, 2017.
  10. ^ Gould, Eli (May 24, 2013). "One For The Kill". Archived from the original on December 29, 2017. Retrieved December 29, 2017.
  11. ^ Chaplinsky, Joshua (May 21, 2010). "Ben Weinman of The Dillinger Escape Plan". Archived from the original on March 8, 2016. Retrieved April 29, 2018. I [would] feel bad [if I bullied other people]. I never want to do that stuff. I got picked on when I was a kid, you know what I mean?
  12. ^ Diana C. Hereld (October 6, 2014). "How Music Saved My Life". To Write Love on Her Arms. Archived from the original on October 7, 2014. Retrieved April 29, 2018.
  13. ^ a b Hartmann 2016, 1:17.
  14. ^ a b Natalie Zina Walschots (June 17, 2013). "The Dillinger Escape Plan | Hazard Warning". Exclaim!. Archived from the original on December 10, 2017. Retrieved December 10, 2017.
  15. ^ Loyola University Film and Music Industry Studies (July 15, 2011). "Arts & Entertainment Industry Forum: Ben Weinman of The Dillinger Escape Plan". Retrieved March 16, 2017 – via YouTube.
  16. ^ Rolli, Bryan (December 29, 2017). "The Dillinger Escape Plan's Ben Weinman On 20 Years Of Self-Made Metal". Forbes. New York City, United States (published December 30, 2017). Retrieved February 2, 2018.
  17. ^ Ph.D, Michael Friedman (June 10, 2016). "Ben Weinman and the Business of Responsible Creativity". Retrieved March 16, 2017.
  18. ^ "What a New Jersey Metal Band Knows About Working From Home". March 15, 2013. Retrieved March 16, 2017 – via
  19. ^ playlist.jhtml Archived February 10, 2012, at the Wayback Machine
  20. ^ Dwyer, Kevin (January 25, 2018). "Interview: Kimbra". Retrieved February 2, 2018.
  21. ^ "Kimbra Talks Collaborating with The Dillinger Escape Plan". May 4, 2015. Retrieved February 2, 2018.
  23. ^ Hartmann 2016, 10:48.
  24. ^ "SUICIDAL TENDENCIES Recruits THE DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN's BEN WEINMAN For Upcoming Shows". July 3, 2018. Retrieved July 3, 2018.
  25. ^ Massie, Andrew (July 15, 2015). "The Rockpit interviews | BEN WEINMAN | DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN". The Rockpit. Retrieved April 27, 2017.
  26. ^ "Ben Weinman Hangs Out With His Idol Marty Friedman in 'Metalhead to Head'" (video). Fuse. June 3, 2014. Event occurs at 2:30. Retrieved April 27, 2017.
  27. ^ Weinman, Ben (July 22, 2014). "The Record That Changed My Life: Ben Weinman of the Dillinger Escape Plan Discusses 'Apocalypse' by the Mahavishnu Orchestra". Guitar World. Retrieved December 10, 2017.
  28. ^ Rowatt, Christina (November 6, 2017). "Dillinger Escape Plan Interview with Ben Weinman 2017: The End, The Beginning, Mike Patton & More" (video). Event occurs at 12:50-15:31. Retrieved December 29, 2017.
  29. ^ Spajic, Petar (October 16, 2017). "Ben Weinman of The Dillinger Escape Plan on The MetalSucks Podcast #210". MetalSucks (Podcast). Event occurs at 50:39-50:44. Archived from the original on October 17, 2017. Retrieved April 29, 2018.
  30. ^ "Ep58 - Ben Weinman". (Podcast). April 24, 2018. Event occurs at 2:52-4:05. Archived from the original on April 25, 2018. Retrieved April 29, 2018.
  31. ^ Penola, Joseph (November 25, 2014). "The You Rock Foundation" (video). Archived from the original on February 9, 2017. Retrieved April 29, 2018.
  32. ^ Hesselink, Jasper (April 2005). "The Dillinger Escape Plan". Archived from the original on December 28, 2017. Retrieved February 2, 2018. I do not know if the other people in the band would consider themselves straightedge, I can pretty much say I am. But I just always have been that way. Everyone has a different rule of what straightedge is so it is difficult to say.
  33. ^ Teitelman, Bram (January 24, 2012). "Exclusive: The Dillinger Escape Plan's Ben Weinman – "Drugs Are Not Part Of Our Creative Process"". Archived from the original on January 13, 2018. Retrieved February 2, 2018. I’ve always been extremely proud of the fact that Dillinger is what it is and it’s never been with the use of any drugs. I feel like that’s been extremely important for the development of this band. We've all been straight edge, and I still am to this day.
  34. ^ Hartmann 2016, 0:55.
  35. ^ Hartmann 2016, 1:06.
  36. ^ "ZACH HILL". Retrieved March 16, 2017.
  37. ^ "BENJAMIN WEINMAN - Listen and Stream Free Music, Albums, New Releases, Photos, Videos". Retrieved March 16, 2017.
  38. ^ "For Sleeping or Jumping Hook Up With Dillinger Escape Plan Guitarist on 'Beardrops' — Song Premiere". Retrieved March 16, 2017.
  39. ^ a b "Preview Exclusive New Tracks by Tosin Abasi, Misha Mansoor, Ben Weinman, Kim Thayil and Dweezil Zappa". August 16, 2013. Retrieved March 16, 2017.


  • Hartmann, Graham (September 14, 2016). "The Dillinger Escape Plan's Ben Weinman - Wikipedia: Fact or Fiction?" (video). Loudwire. Retrieved October 19, 2016.

External links

  • Party Smasher Inc., independent record label founded by Weinman.
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