Lead Vocals/Rhythm Guitar (1961 Cherry Red Gibson 335)

Ben is 57 and has been married to Chris for 38 years (who he met on band tour in Oklahoma in 1968.)
He has 3 kids (Justin, Jessica, and Michael) and 3 grandkids (Zach, Dana, and Addision.)

Ben has lived in Ponca City, Oklahoma for the past 26 years retiring from ConocoPhillips in December 2002 as Director of Human Resources.  For the past two years Ben has been working as a Technology Coach for the Ponca City School System, which he has described as the perfect job for a retired “gadget guy”.

Ben remembers the day in 1964 that changed his life forever when Robert Orr walked up to him on the tetherball courts at Royster Jr. High in Chanute, Kansas.  Robert said “Hey, I hear you sing and play guitar – would you like to get together and form a band?  Trying to act cool I said “Sure”, but inside my gut was turning somersaults.  How could I ever sing in public?  I got red in the face and would start to hyperventilate if anyone would say my name out loud!  Well, that all changed after the first time I heard the audience respond to our music”.  From that point forward my “comfort zone” was on-stage performing my heart out – I was hooked!”

Ben’s hobbies are RVing, music, and entertaining his 3 grandkids.  Since November 2005,  with the urging of David Orr,  “The Common Few?”  have reunited and played several gigs for the Kansas Lions Rock Hall of Fame and for the “Up In Flames” benefit concert for the Kansas Music Hall of Fame. 

Ben says that getting back together with all his old high school friends and fellow band members has been one of the most enjoyable times of his life.  “It was quite a challenge for a bunch of old geezers to pick up where they left off over 35 years ago, but after a lot of hard work and determination we are back doing what we love – making music.  And the fun part is, our kids and grandkids get a glimpse of one of the best times of our youth.  Like my 10-year-old grandson said after seeing us in our first reunion concert “Pop, you’re not too old to rock and roll!”

 “Being inducted into the Kansas Music Hall of Fame on January 13, 2007 is such an honor which recognizes what this group has meant to me and many of our Kansas fans – both the old ones and the new ones we’ve picked up after a few generations since we first started.  As the words in a Martina McBride song says “I have been blessed, for so much more than I deserve.” -Ben Ennis


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