Tag Archives: Majestic Theater

You should be listening to Ben Harper!

Whether Ben Harper is playing with the “Innocent Criminals”, “The Blind Boys of Alabama”, or “The Relentless Seven”, he is making some pretty amazing music.  His style is as varied as his influences: Funk, Soul, Blues, Gospel,Reggae, Rock, and R&B, it all comes out in his music.  He is renowned for his ability on the slide guitar.

 Ben had a cult following in the decade of the 90’s and started to gain some commercial success in 2000 with the single “Steal My Kisses” from his album “Burn to Shine”.  His expressive voice and varied musical styles offer his fans a kaleidoscope of ear candy.  Another example of this is his stunning 2004 collaboration with the Blind Boys of Alabama “There Will Be Light”.   With each album it seems that he further embraces his influences such as Bob Dylan, Bob Marley, and of course, Jimi Hendrix, while continuing to explore and expand his own.

 To really appreciate Ben Harper, you must see him live.  I have had this privilege on three separate occasions and in three different phases of his career.  The first time I saw him was four or five years ago at Austin City Limits Music Festival.  He was energetic and engaging and had the entire crowd of thousands completely enthralled.  The next occasion was on his “Lifeline” tour with his backing band ‘The Innocent Criminals” at the Majestic Theater in Dallas.  The tour was billed as acoustic and intimate and it was indeed both of those things.  The fans were seated for the entire show and captivated by the music.  The most recent concert was the 2008 Austin City Music Festival.  He was touring with his new band “The Relentless Seven”.  His hour long set was tight and focused on his new material from “White Lies for Dark Times”.  He was in fine form and his new band sounded great.

Ben Harper Discography

  • Welcome to the Cruel World
  • Fight for Your Mind
  • The Will To Live
  • Burn To Shine
  • Diamonds on the Inside
  • Live From Mars
  • There Will Be Light
  • Both Sides of the Gun
  • Lifeline
  • Live at the Twist & Shout
  • White Lies for Dark Times

 Top 5 Ben Harper Songs according to Butler (Albums listed to right of song):

  1. Amen Omen (Diamonds on the Inside)
  2. Having Wings (Lifeline)
  3. I’ll Rise (Welcome to the Cruel World)
  4. Excuse Me Mr. (Fight for Your Mind)
  5. Better Way (Both Sides of the Gun)

 If you have never listened to Ben Harper, then I highly recommend “Live From Mars” as your introductory sampling. It is a great selection of his music and some covers songs from artists such as Marvin Gaye, Led Zeppelin, and The Verve.

 Give Ben Harper some love and let me know what you think.

 Ben Harper’s music is available is available on iTunes, record stores and www.benharper.com.

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Great music awaits!


You should be listening to Donavon Frankenreiter

Donavon Frankenreiter can sing, surf, and sell sandals (Sanuk Donny Sidewalks).  Donavon is truly living a sweet and charmed life.  His first album, self titled, was released in 2004 on his buddy Jack Johnson’s “Brushfire Records” label.  He has collaborated with Ben Harper, G Love, Grant Lee Phillips, and Jack Johnson.  Did I mention that he surfs?  Professionally!  Yep, Donavon is a pro surfer (sponsored by Billabong) who has traveled the world in search of the elusive perfect wave. 

 His sound is laid back and mellow.  There is more than a hint of the 70’s sound in his music.  Most songs are built around an acoustic guitar, light percussions, and low key charm. He brings a little more electricity and energy to “Move By Yourself” but not a dramatic departure from his cool breeze ways. 

 I’ve seen Donovan on two occasions.  The first was a few years ago when he opened for Ben Harper.  The show was at the Majestic Theater in Dallas and the perfect venue for Donavon’s acoustic set.  The next time I saw him was at the Austin City Limits Music Festival.  This was another great venue for Donavon’s style of music.  This show was a little more electric and included some backup singers. 

Donavon Frankenreiter Discography

  • Donavon Frankenreiter
  • Move By Yourself
  • Pass It Around
  • Recycled Recipes (EP)
  • The Abbey Road Sessions (Live)

 Top 5 Donavon Frankenreiter Songs according to Butler (Albums listed to right of song):

  1. Wondering Where the Lions Are (Recycled Recipes EP)
  2. Butterfly (Donavon Frankenreiter)
  3. Move By Yourself (Move By Yourself)
  4. Free (Donavon Frankenreiter)
  5. Pass It Around (Pass It Around)

Check out Donavon Frankenreiter and let me know what you think.

Donavon Frankenreiter’s music is available on iTunes, in record stores and on www.donavonf.com.

  Great music awaits!