A Atlanta review by my cousin who went-that rat bastard!

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A Atlanta review by my cousin who went-that rat bastard!

Post  ronniechristian1999 on Tue Oct 11, 2011 12:20 am

My cousin reviewed this concert on facebook. He said it was cool to share with you guys. Hope you guys like it because right now he is dead to me-lol.

Ben Harper: Better Than I Deserve
by Andre Rivas on Saturday,
October 8, 2011 at 7:22pm.

As much of a DMB nut I am, the best concert I've ever experienced was 2005's Ben Harper performance at The Tabernacle in Atlanta. It was part of a 4-Harper concert road trip the equally-sick-in-the-head Chuck Ford - with his lovely lady Emily Dewyea -- and I ventured. We hit the House of Blues in Myrtle Beach first, swung back to Atlanta for the Tabernacle show, then a show in Jacksonville and for Chuck one more stop in Orlando at the HOB (I couldn't make it to the last show... work).

All the shows were great but that show in Atlanta became something of a religious experience and the Tabernacle was our church. It was just one of those high-energy, high-caliber performances music lovers have all experienced, that one concert you will never ever forget. I've had a fair number of those but if I'm forced to pick one... that was mine. Amongst other things in that wild and crazy night, this happened:


I've seen Ben a few times since then. And when Chuck saw Mr. Harper was returning to the scene of the crime, The Tabernacle, (and on Chuck's birthday no less) we knew what we had to do. The reunion was in full throttle.

The show was incredible, musically it was superior to the 2005 show because Ben and his new band (the Relentless 7) play harder and rougher than the funkier Innocent Criminals ever did, great though they were. It could never replace 2005 but it is definitely the 2nd best Harper performance I've witnessed. Below is a setlist and some random thoughts.

1. Better Way - He opened the Jacksonville show I went to with this as well. Always liked this song.

2. Glory & Consequence >>Jeremy>> Glory & Consequence - Ben is good friends with Eddie Vedder and he does his friend justice here. Incorporating Jeremy into Glory & Consequence may seem a strange move but trust me it works awesomely. Wonderful surprise. This kicked things into a higher gear.

3. Up to You Now - Tremendous, hard-hitting stuff. The second "Wow" of the night so far.

4. Fly One Time - My second favorite song from the White Lies for Dark Times album... didn't expect to hear it so a weclomed surprise. Fun, inspiring song.

5. Number with No Name - The band kicked it good here. They just were getting straight up dirty now.

6. Diamonds on the Inside - Typical Ben goodness. I should note the Diamonds on the Inside album was given to me by my cousin, the great Ronnie Ruiz, who started my Ben Harper fascination. So he is to blame. I loved the way he broke into an accoustic version at the end and then that accoustic version bled right into...

7. Masterpiece - new song, LOVED it. Can't wait to hear it again.

8. Suzie Blue - Love this little diddy! If anyone wants to know why I love Ben Harper so much, listen to Suzie Blue with it's New Orleansian jazzy notes and then listen to Ben rip off a vicious, rockin' Zeppelin cover (more on that later) and then listen to his mellow suicide-inducing tracks like Walk Away and then listen to his more commercial-sounding pop-rocks like Fly One Time, his reggae foray in the likes of My Own Two Hands, his gospel-like Where Could I Go, his Prince-like funk in Better Way, his stoner homage Burn One Down, his pure rock songs like Ground on Down... yes I can go on forever. The point being...You can't pin this guy down!

9. Lay There and Hate Me - My favorite song off the White Lies for Dark Times Album and without a doubt one of the top 5 performances of the night. KILLER drum solo and a bass solo to boot. This performance knocked everyone on their ass

10. Where Could I Go - As fantastic as this was - and Ben's go-for-it heart-and-soul style is on full display here - it did not top this Miami performance I went to in 2007 (where I got to meet and take pictures with Ben with my brother, my cousins Ronnie and Justin)...


If you can not dig that performance you hate music.


11. Mutt - Fantastic solo by Ben... this is just Ben and an instrument, not sure what type of guitar... (Dude plays like 50 different ones) The first of a run of purely accoustic performances while the rest of the band gets a break

12. I'm On Fire - Great accoustic cover of The Boss's classic

13. Walk Away - See next song

14. Another Lonely Day - Back-to-back I got two of my faves, two of those sad, mellow sort of tracks I mentioned about earlier. I don't know what speaks to me more, mellow Ben or rockin' Ben.

15. I Shall Not Walk Alone - Another accoustic mellow track of the gospel-kind from his Blind Boys album. Nicely done.

16. Waiting on an Angel - Another beautiful mellow accoustic track of a really pretty song that I like but I was getting antsy now. I wanted to rock again. I answered my own question: I wanted rockin' Ben. The slower songs were starting to remind me my feet wanted to murder me.

17. Feel Love - Rare song from the new album! Ben didn't play hardly anything from his latest album (maybe because so many of them are angry and a result of his breaking up with wife Laura Dern and they are trying to now work things out? I dunno, that's my best guess)

18. Forever - Not a gigantic fan of this song. It's nice but my bunyans were aching and another slower song was reminding me of that I really, really, really needed a bathroom break here. DO NOT JUDGE ME!!!!

19. Vein in Vain - The accoustic set is now over and the rest of the band returns for... another new song! Excellent! Starts slow and then it begins to hit a little harder. Really dug it.

20. Helpless - Neil Young cover he performed with opening act Grace Woodruff (who by the way FUCKING OWNED)... nicely done.

... From here, Ben built up a terrific show into a nice, quieting accoustic set, and slowly turned things up a notch with Vein in Vain and then Helpless. From here on in, things got ridiculous. As Ben said before the very next song... "We saved the best for last"

21. Faded - One of my favorite rock songs of his AND IT BLASTED THE ROOF OFF. The band was in full force here.

22. Burn to Shine - This has never been one of my favorites by my god, they properly WRECKED shit up with this.

23. Under Pressure - Great cover, very surprising choice and a lot of fun

24. No Quarter - After the show some friendly drunk bastard was talking to me about how amazing the show was but my favorite part of the conversation was when he said, "But yo... anybody can just decide to cover Led Zeppelin but can you FUCKING COVER LED ZEPPELIN WITH FUCKING PURPOSE MAN? HOLY SHIT HE TORE THAT UP WITH PURPOSE!" The friendly drunk bastard was right, THIS WAS THE PERFORMANCE OF THE NIGHT!!!!! This was hard-hitting rock of the highest order, the kind of performance where you need not only the talent but also the balls and the passion to pull off. WOWZA.

25. Better Than I Deserve - Looking at the setlists the last few weeks it became obvious that he wasn't playing a lot of the songs from the new album, specifically the 2 fan favorites, the heart-wrenching, beautiful I Will Not Be Broken and the angry-as-all-hell, powerful I Do It For You, I Do It For Us... which was a real bummer for me. It was also obvious that he was closing almost every show with a new song Better Than I Deserve. I figured it had to be great if he was closing on a new song so often... and I was not wrong. It's a tremendous crowd pleaser with a easy-to-sing-along chorus, "Ooo-ooo-oohh... you're better than I Deserve... Ooo-ooo-oohh... you're better than I Deserve..Ooo-ooo-oohh... you're better than I Deserve.." etc. Reminds me of Pearl Jam for some reason. Anyway, the crowd ate it up, and we kept singing the chorus long after the song was over. As we sang, Ben and his band put down their instruments and joined each other at the center of the stage, embracing each other and soaking in the crowd. We sang and we sang "Ooo-ooo-oohh... you're better than I Deserve", a track I have no doubt will be a favorite once their new album is completed within the next year, until Ben quieted the crowd, thanking us for being "the most musically brave fan base in the world". That may not entirely true but it was awesome to hear anyway. He also said The Tabernacle was his "most favorite place to play". That, I do believe.

3 hours and 20 minutes of Ben Harper over. 4 hours of music total including the opening act, Grace Woodruff. An amazing show, an amazing night with friends followed by philly cheesesteaks and chicken wings at 3am. And Oreos.

I will mercifully wrap this up with something Ben quoted before singing, Where Could I Go...

"The world is my country, all man and women are my brothers and sisters, and to do good is my religion." -Thomas Paine

For Dre, I love ya cousin but you still blow.


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For Real?!

Post  MCTolen on Thu Oct 13, 2011 5:49 pm

Is this set list for REAL?! This is a DREAM setlist for any BH fan!! I didn't think such shows were possible!! Keep it up Ben and PLEASE bring it somewhere near me!


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Re: A Atlanta review by my cousin who went-that rat bastard!

Post  Peter on Fri Oct 14, 2011 6:44 am

That's out of this world! Wow what a show. Reminds me of some of the 06/07 shows where he mixed it right up.

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Tabernacle Show

Post  ntornow on Sat Oct 15, 2011 3:28 pm

I was lucky enough to see this show. That review is right on. It was absolutely amazing. You cant get much better than 25 songs and 3+ hours. The energy was intense, crowd pretty engaged and the setlist was diverse. Honestly, I wouldnt have minded seeing more songs from Give till its Gone but no complaints on my part. The only BH show that rivals this for me was Royal Oak, MI in 2005 when they played 30 songs including Heard it Through the Grapevine. That was the loudest crowd Ive ever heard.


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Re: A Atlanta review by my cousin who went-that rat bastard!

Post  SOLAT319 on Sun Oct 16, 2011 3:27 am

When I got a chance to have a little chat with Ben after Doheny Days gig, I told him I couldn't wait to see him at Tabernacle. At the time I was planning to make it to this show (yes, I know! you don't have to tell me ) But then when he announced The Mint show, I made my choice and went with that 200-people TINY fucking venue option. Anyway, when I talked to him after Doheny, he told me how excited he was to be playing Tabernacle! Seeing this review, and seeing some clips on youtube, I now know how fucking WRONG I was not to still make an attempt to go to Atlanta. I will never ever forgive myself for that. Evil or Very Mad

I will however see your

ronniechristian1999 wrote:


If you can not dig that performance you hate music.

And raise you this:

And that is my redemption for not being at Tabernacle gig. I was right under his feet for that Very Happy

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Re: A Atlanta review by my cousin who went-that rat bastard!

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