Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Breaking Benjamin’s Jasen Rauch Talks New Music, Tattoos And His Perfect Day In Nashville

Breaking Benjamin is an American rock band from Pennsylvania, formed in 1999 by lead singer and guitarist Benjamin Burnley and former drummer Jeremy Hummel. The band is known for its formulaic hard rock sounds and “crunching” guitars. 

Despite lineup changes over the years, the band’s musical style and lyrical content have remained consistent. In the United States alone, the band has sold more than 19 million units and earned three RIAA-certified platinum records, two gold records, and several certified singles, of which there are three multi-platinum, three platinum, and six gold. 

Breaking Benjamin's Jasen Rauch Talks New Music
Photo Credit: Amy Harris/The Travel Addict

Jasen Rauch has been the band’s lead guitarist for the past decade since 2014 after leaving the Christian rock band Red. Jasen is also a music producer, writer, and recording artist, having produced for Korn guitarist, Brian Welch’s solo project, Love and Death, and co-writing several songs on the Breaking Benjamin album, Dear Agony

Breaking Benjamin is preparing to go on tour with the rock band Daughtry and hard rock band Catch Your Breath on March 21st. The tour will be appearing all across the country, ending their tour in York, Pennsylvania in July, right after their Inkcarceration Festival performance in Mansfield, Ohio. 

We got to meet up with Jasen during ShipRocked to talk about the future music of Breaking Benjamin, his perfect day in Nashville, and the meaning behind his favorite neck tattoo.

Breaking Benjamin's Jasen Rauch Talks New Music
Photo Credit: Amy Harris/The Travel Addict

Tell me about Breaking Benjamin. Is there any new music coming? What can fans expect?

We have been working on new music for quite some time. Obviously COVID put a little pause in our plans. We’ve been writing for over two years. We’ve been recording for about six months, got a little bit more to go, but we’re about halfway there, so we’re pretty excited about it.

Can you tell me anything about when we’re going to see it released?

It honestly just depends. That’s kind of out of our hands. Some of it has to do with label timing, some has to do with tour schedule, all those kinds of things. It’s a pretty strategic decision as far as the actual release date goes. They don’t like to call that until we’re closer to getting there. In the meantime, we’re 100% working. As a matter of fact, after this trip, we go right back into the studio.

Photo Credit: Amy Harris/The Travel Addict

What were the highlights of the tour last summer? 

The fact that it wasn’t as hot as the previous tour. Summer tours can be difficult being outside. Weather is kind of an interesting dynamic in ways that you wouldn’t think. It’s not necessarily rain, it’s not storms or something like that, but it’s the heat. It was a good tour overall. It’s one of the smoothest ones we’ve had in a while, as well as being with Disturbed. We’ve known them forever, and we’re close with all those guys. So, it was kind of a homecoming. It was a blast overall.

What’s your perfect day in Nashville?

I like to go to new restaurants, so I’m always looking for new food and new areas. There’s some good new spots in the Gulch or some good new spots on the East end, all over the place. There’s a place called Sunda in the Gulch. The owner also has a restaurant in Chicago. There’s a place on the East side, Pelican & Pig. It’s a wood fire steak house. There’s some good spots for burgers down there. There’s some Meat and Threes you should also check out. 

Breaking Benjamin's Jasen Rauch Talks New Music
Photo Credit: Amy Harris/The Travel Addict

Are there any hidden gems you would recommend people visit that you’ve found on the road?

One of my favorites was New Zealand. I love New Zealand. As far as Europe goes, I would say I really enjoy Sweden and Switzerland, both amazing countries. Alaska is gorgeous. I like doing things that are outdoorsy. Those are all beautiful scenic countries and the cultures are great there as well.

What do you do in your downtime on the road?

Work. A lot of writing. I’ve been pretty busy with it. We have a mobile recorder that tours with us. Whether it be for demoing or cutting final parts or overdubs or anything like that. So that takes a lot of our time. Other than that, try to find good restaurants.

Photo Credit: Amy Harris/The Travel Addict

You have a lot of tattoos. Do you have a favorite tattoo story or a meaning behind any of them?

I just started my throat a couple of years ago and left it up to the artist. I have three daughters, so something incorporated with them. That’s my favorite piece. There’s a death moth that has, right around the skull, three negative space butterflies for the girls. I really like that he’s been able to incorporate that. That design will go into my back. I’m excited. 

You’re doing a spring tour with Daughtry. Any cities you’re looking forward to?

All of them. Honestly, I haven’t looked at the routing too much. I know we’re going up a little more north than we have, so it’d be nice to get up there because there’s some markets up there we want to hit that we haven’t been to in a while. 

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Amy Harris
Amy Harris is a writer and photographer who has been traveling for 20 years and flown over 2 million miles to visit over 80 countries on 6 continents. She is a freelance photographer for Invision by Associated Press, AP Images and Rex/Shutterstock. Her work can be seen in various publications and websites including: Rolling Stone, AP Images, National Geographic Books, Fodor’s Travel Guides, Forbes.com, Lonely Planet Travel Guides, JetStar magazine, and Delta Sky Magazine.

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