Photography Akos Major

I do what I love.

-I produce records at a studio called The Beehive located in Nashville, TN.

-I write songs, compose, and arrange music.

-I work as a keyboardist in the studio and on the road.

You can contact me at benshive@me.com

It's getting better all the time.

I grew up in St. Louis, Missouri. By the time I was 16 I was pretty sure I wanted to play Hammond organ and piano on records for a living. When I was 19 I finally got the courage to try. That's when I moved to Nashville to finish college at Belmont.

Things happened fast. Two years after moving to town, when I should have been practicing for my senior recital, I was writing strings for Andrew Peterson's Behold The Lamb Of God. Months later, I graduated and started traveling with Andrew, which I still do.

My dream of playing sessions came true very quickly when producers like Steve Hindalong and Ed Cash began hiring me as a keyboardist and string arranger. These days I play fewer sessions and write fewer arrangements than I used to because other passions have taken precedence. But I still love to do both.

The first record I produced was for a Belmont student named Sara Beth Go. The second was Behold The Lamb Of God. By 2005 I saw myself as a producer first, then a session player, then a string arranger. In 2013 I produced or co-produced 10 albums, a record number for me. Pun intended.

I've also released two solo records, The Ill-Tempered Klavier and The Cymbal Crashing Clouds, as well as writing songs with Andrew Peterson, Sara Groves, Jason Gray, Ben Rector, and Brandon Heath. These days, writing is catching up to producing as the biggest consumer of my time. And that's good because I love to do it.

I've always been blessed to work with the cream of the crop and each year gets better than the one before it. I'm truly blessed.

Feathers in my cap. Excuse the (un)humble brag.

First writing credit on a label album: Canaan Bound, recorded by Andrew Peterson. Background singer on that song: Alison Krauss. Perhaps you've heard of her.

Astronaut Pat Forrester took a cd I produced (Andrew Peterson's THE FAR COUNTRY) to space with him. Perhaps you've heard of it. He photographed the cd floating in front of the earth. I had signed it, "Hi, me."

Have been a part of the bigger-than-all-of-us tour, Behold the Lamb of God since 2001. We play the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, perhaps you've heard of it, each year.

Over the years, I've shared the stage with Andrew Peterson, Dave Barnes, Ben Rector, Steven Curtis Chapman, Matt Wertz, Bebo Norman, Sara Groves, Jill Phillips, Andy Gullahorn, Andrew Osenga, Jason Gray, Ellie Holcomb, Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors, Allison Krauss, Michael Card, Fernando Ortega, Eric Peters, Melanie Penn, Audio Adrenaline (the Kevin Max version), Laura Story, SheDaisy, and probably somebody else I'm forgetting. Perhaps you've heard of them.

I've played the Grand Ole Opry on three occasions. Perhaps you've heard of it.

I've gotten to produce some amazing artists, but I've also gotten to co-produce alongside two of my favorite producers, namely Cason Cooley and Brown Bannister. Perhaps you've heard of them--if you read liner notes.

In 2012, Andrew Peterson and I got to sit with Paul Simon for about an hour. We talked production, songwriting, and caffeine. Perhaps you've heard of it.

I've been married to my wife, Beth, since May 26th, 2001. We have four kids. Come to think of it, forget all that other stuff.