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Ben Shepherd


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Ben Shepherd (born Hunter Benedict Shepherd, on September 20, 1968) is an American musician best known for playing bass in the band Soundgarden from 1990 until the band’s 1997 break-up.

He was born on an American military base in Okinawa, Japan. His family moved to Texas, then settled in Bainbridge Island, Washington where Shepherd grew up. Shepherd played in numerous punk-rock bands with friends before he was a teenager. After graduating high school, he worked as a carpenter and a laborer. He became involved in the grunge scene when he worked as a roadie for Nirvana. He first auditioned for the role of bassist in Soundgarden in 1989, immediately after Hiro Yamamoto left, but was turned down because he could not play the songs well enough, due to the fact that around this same time, Nirvana had asked him to audition as well. Jason Everman was hired as the band’s new bassist, but for unknown reasons, was fired immediately after Soundgarden completed their promotional tour in mid-1990. Shepherd was then hired.

In addition to his role as bass player, Shepherd wrote the lyrics and music to the song “Somewhere” on the band’s 3rd album, Badmotorfinger. He also contributed to the musical composition of several of the other songs on that album.

In 1993, Shepherd and Soundgarden drummer Matt Cameron formed a side-project band called Hater. Shepherd sang vocals and played guitar in Hater, in addition to writing several songs on the band’s first release; a self-titled album.

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  • benshepherdgirl

    God... what can I say? Ben is simply amazing. he's a beautiful human being with a good soul and heart. I can't tell you how many times his art has comforted me and legitimately saved my life. hell, I'll even go as far as to say that he is the love of my life. My favorite person and musician ever. I love this man more than he nor anyone else will ever understand.

    16 Aug 2013 Reply
  • black_acid_exe

    Most of my favourite Soundgarden tunes are written by Ben Shepherd. Hater frakkin' rules too.... oh, and Ben live on stage with Soundgarden? Saw them live twice and the man is a showman, swinging his bass around for fun, pure entertainment. Ben. You rule.

    13 Apr 2009 Reply

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