07.04.03 Ottawa, Canada

Cisco Systems Blues Festival Festival Plaza with K-OS

I Was There
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"Welcome To The Cruel World" was on the setlist but was never played. "Faded/Whole Lotta Love" was also on setlist but "Like A King" > "I'll Rise" was played instead. Nicky P's last show on guitar as an Innocent Criminal.

Who Went

  • rob75446's picture
  • PierreP's picture
  • goats's picture
  • franklin.a.lyons38485's picture
  • sortis51675's picture
  • nivek's picture
  • Karynn's picture


anonymous's picture

Well indeed, Ben and the innocent criminals is my best band ever. The crowd and the emotion was perfect.. Can't wait to see you again Ben! I'm willing to move from montreal another time to see you in concert! Please come back to canada! You are the best!

suzannerobson2169357's picture

This concert was spectacular! I bought tickets for my Boyfriend, as a birthday present and we LOVED every second of Ben's show! BHIC was the perfect choice to open Bluesfest 2003! The sun was setting and we were all mesmerized by the incredible sound of Ben's Weissenborn. The vibe from the crowd was unbelievable! Plus, "The Fabulous Mr. Harper" proved how considerate he really is, by offering earplugs to the babies and children in the crowd who were covering their ears, because it was too loud for them. Thanks, Ben, for a great show! We miss you! Please, come back, soon!

anonymous's picture

I have been waiting to see Ben play live for over 5 years now, and to finally see him was a pure delight. To see Ben perform live is truly a spiritual experience! Ben was in fine form at the Bluesfest with close to 3 hrs of passionaltely beautiful music. Truly one of the greatest performances I have ever seen.
Thank for coming Ben and we all hope to see you again soon.

anonymous's picture

Mr Harper and the Criminals were in fine fine form..The texture of the show was, however, patchy and uneven in places...With so many songs that lend themselves to lenghty jams and flow the frequent start and stopping was jarring.
A passionate artist such as Mr Harper should have no problem wrapping the audience into the palm of his hands, and yet with Ottawa it was not so. Maybe its not Ben it's just OTTAWA...But thank you for coming Ben, please come back soon and find a nice small venue...tg

anonymous's picture

This show was absolutely magical - Ben had so much energy fused into each and every number, and the Innocent Criminals (especially the guy who played bass) were equally as pleasing. From my personal favourite "Another Lonely Day" to the ever-amusing "Burn One Down," Ben never ceased to amaze me. With power, emotion, and some pretty entertaining dance moves, this show was a special treat for hungry Ben fans in Ottawa.

anonymous's picture

For my fifth Ben show, this one ranked at number two. Ben seemed to be lacking a little energy at first, but reclaimed it as soon as he played Excuse me Mr. in an awesome reggae version. I still haven't decided whether I liked ben's new method of performing (standing up), but it certainly made for variety. Wish he could have played ground on down, but I shall have to wait until the next time - let's hope it's not as long as it was since the last tour. Ottawa needs more Ben in its neglected musical experiences, so thanks for livening it up.

awalj13975's picture

It was on spring 2003, that I've come accross greatness. I was watching an expose about an artist I didn't knew. I was intrigued and curious to know his name. Then it popped, someone said it. It was Ben Harper. Soon, I visited the official site and wasn't dissapointed at all to discovering the artistry of Ben Harper. I must have listened to With My Own Two Hands ten times, maybe even more. As the days went by I searched the internet to learn more about him, while requesting his cds at the local library. Welcome To The Cruel World; Burn To Shine; Fight For Your Mind and Live From Mars; all terrific albums. Then came Diamonds On The Inside, and wow, it consolidated my appreciation and my status as a Ben Harper fan. All that was needed now, was a live performance, a concert. Thank you Bluesfest. On that hot evening of the 4th of July 2003, right after K-OS' mesmerizing performance, long minutes went by as I sat down on the grass with myblue bagpack and my Aquafina water bottle, surrounded by other fans, all ages, all backgrounds, all shapes and sizes. Lot's of wonderful folks! The sun settle in the horizon, the excitment was slowly by surely building. Then, it happened. Ben and the Innocent Criminals came on stage and from then on, time just stopped, to let the crowd enjoy this musical ride down to "FEELING GOOD" times. It was pure delight. Starting by Glory & Consequence, going strong onwards; slowing things down with the remarkable Sexual Healing (i bet wherever Marvin was, he must have felt it too) that brought everyone close. My favourite moment : Burn One Down. Just before singing it, Ben talked about the herb, about it beeing a good thing from the ground. But he also teased those who aren't getting nowhere with it and also those who (like me) need one, because they were uptight and needed to losen up. And I sure did. I couldn't help it, but I in fact inhale what the air was receiving from all those who lighted up. And boy it was nice! You satisfied us with your encore, when you performed Another Lonely Day (it had everyone joined in and sing). That encore was purely soulful. but you delighted us once more, back with the band and She's Only Happy In The Sun (I even bet the moon was happy). Last call : Like A King/I'll Rise. A wonderful tribute to Dr.King. As it beeing my second concert. My first outdoor, and standing up. I would like to say it was an incredible experience. It's true what they say. He's truly live when you hear him and his soul. Terrific time. I know you and the band enjoyed it. It really showed. Thanks for coming. We know you'll be coming by again and again. 'Til then, the memories will stay vividly engraved on my mind. Truly yours, a fan.

anonymous's picture

I bragged to my friends about what a treat they were in for before last night's show and Ben did not disappoint. WOW - What a great show.... I saw Ben at the Metropolis in Montreal several years ago and and am a huge fan. Can't wait to seee him again.

anonymous's picture

well i waited for 8 years for an opportunity to see this man and his crew in concert and it was truly worth the wait. 'gold to me' was amazing as was everything else about the performance. hopefully i don't have to wait another 8! cheers

anonymous's picture

It was my first time seeing BHIC, it was an amazing experience. A well put together set with tons of energy and emotion. I loved it, blew my mind....

cedu13365's picture

One word - amazing!! 2,5 hrs of pure joy.
Great job, and thanks for coming to Ottawa!!!
Come and see us again.

anonymous's picture

well well well, Ben Harper has totaly change his show and its wonderfull! the show was packed with emotions and lots of fun.

Mr.Nelson totaly proved us that he's the king of bass.

hopefully everybody else liked it as much as I did!