05.22.06 Auckland, New Zealand

St. James Theatre with DJ Evil Vince

I Was There
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Ben was accompanied by Michael Ward on guitar, Tim Loo on cello, and three Kiwi string players for an intimate acoustic evening.

Who Went

  • Jess's picture
  • Pdub's picture


Pdub's picture

Primo concert, love Ben

borenz9960445's picture

Hey man,
Awesome show! Bawled right through "Waiting for you". The chillies might be in my veins but your music is in my soul. Been learning drums after I met you in Japan after Fuji rock gig (did a nutter dash backstage-showed you my tattoos and you were kind enough to let me get a photo) and have been so inspired. Need a drummer- I got da goods!
Thank you! No, thank you!

tnewing37581's picture

What can I say, it was an honour to attend this acoustic concert. Passion is the word! You brought tears to my eyes. With out a doubt the best concert I have been to.

Pat's picture

i just read the NZ herald review of the concert and quite frankly had to post again. The reviewer seemed to think Ben was dull with the innocents, but i thought it was just another style. Personally acoustic speaks to me far more than any electric but maybe thats just me. I guess im biased cause i play acoustic. I never felt the performance was "bland" and i was begging for more not out of disappointementment. I lovedit.

meganmatia78986's picture

Ben, I feel blessed and honoured to have experienced such an awesome gig. Once again you exceeded all my expectations and I doubt I will ever witness a show quite like that one. Highlight definately had to be "where could I go", brought me to tears. In response to the crowd's reaction, sometimes its hard to contain what we feel, we love you. You are truly an inspiration, you sing what you believe, you believe what you sing. Its an honour to embrace you as one of our own.

pinducafn3439's picture


NZ_Angel's picture

WOW!!! My dream has nearly come true. Ben, you are my idol. The way you present yourself, the way you act, your beliefs, your mindboggling talent - its all so incredible.
I have never been a "fan" of any one particular group/artist before. I have enjoyed music and appreciated it - but never have I experienced a sound like yours. You are an outstanding role model and such a dedicated man. I hope one day to be blessed with the chance of meeting you and listening to more of what you have to say. Every word spoken has behind it wisdom and such inspiration that accompanies it. We have all been blessed to see you live in concert and hear what you have to say (even if it is without a microphone)
Dont change Ben - you are truely changing people.

As for the feeling bad about the concert - I know that sometimes it may feel that you could have done better - but everyone has their off days. You should know though, that I felt such a release listening to you and so much more in touch with my emotional and god-fearing side. Even if only it is a handfull of people that you truely touch in one concert - that is a blessing in itself. But the crowd loved you - that has to be saying something!

The world needs you, and NZ needs you. Please come back to see us soon. Maybe this time I will be able to meet you and have my dream come completely true.

God Bless,

anonymous's picture

Well, as all but one post before me has noted, this concert was superb. Personally, I loved the accoustic approach, and the string quartet complimented the performance brilliantly. Aside from the people who kept yelling out plain stupid comments, Ben & the team kept everyone mesmerized with a stunning array of vocal and instrumental skills. A truly talented musician, and all round nice guy. His comments about religion and being in this together summed up his attitude, something we could all learn from in the current state of world affairs. In his interview with TV3 it said he'd be back before the end of the year to play again, so we can only hope!

mattfowler1844598's picture

That concert was the best I have been to...since...well, your last concert I went to. Thank you...and, just to set the record straight, I never paid to much for those tickets...I would have paid double. Come to think of it, I haven't even paid the person who got them for me....anyway, come back soon, like, next Monday...Cheers Ben...

anonymous's picture


You touch my life in a way that is only good. I feel a better person after breathing in your music and you are an inspiration to many with your lyrical goodness.

My cousin and I travelled up from Wellington to see you play and, as i knew you wouldn't, you never disappointed me once. Your passion and understanding for music gives me hope that there can be a better way...

Aku mihi ano...

Jade Eru, Wellington

nonti4043282's picture

This was my first concert ever. With my boyfriend (who is the first post). He insisted on getting tickets for Ben. Now i know why. Ive never had soo much fun and enjoyed music in that way. The marijuana was soo annoying. I hate that. It wouldve been better with more responsible people to really get into his sound. Me and my boyfriend loved his performance. I hope Ben will come back really soon and play for us again. An experience i will never forget. Thankyou for a great night and my first concert .

smitnz's picture

What an amazing night... Just a shame that some of the crowd seemed like they were under the R18 age limit.. some stupid comments, smashing glasses, and what sounded like argueing going on?.
If the crowd had been able to show as much respect as Ben, Michael and the Quartet deserved it would of been even more magical.
Thank you Ben, I hope you enjoyed the show as much as I did.

l.vanderaa31561's picture

ben you are the man
this concert could not have been any better i loved every moment of it

brainof_j67279's picture

The gig was amazing. Thought it was a pity the crowd didn't quite get the acoustic thing. I guess we'll never know what might have been if Ben had been able to sing more without the mic. I kinda felt he gave up trying after the crowd kept drowning him out.
Did the constant camera and cell phone falshes bug anyone else? Everyone else down the front on the right hand side, breathe a collective sigh of relief when that obnoxious drunken idiot who kept yelling out went back to the bar for another drink?? Anyway, the string quartet was brill (xcept for the sound probs). Loved burn one down take 2.
Thanks for a great night Ben, see ya later this year. We hope!!!

sdannapfel23457's picture

This was a truly soulful experience. Besides the music (personal highlights Please Bleed and new song Morning yearning) and the really personal gift of Ben singing without the microphone, the highlight for me was Ben's comments "we are all in this together"...in reference to the connection everyone in this world shares and the need for us all to well, "believe in a better way". (yes i know cheesy :) ). I think what makes ben's music connect so much is the intense passion and deepness of the message and thought behind it. I thank ben and everyone in the audience for a night of musical magic. I feel renewed.

janelle.sutherland21293's picture

St James was my second ben harper concert and to sum it up.. it totally blew me away.

i shared this amazing set ben and Michael Ward played, with my sister and my brother. all three of us felt like you were singing to us ben it seemed like there was no one else in the room. an amazing feeling.

ben, you talent amazes me every time i hear you play/sing and dance. you share that talent with so many and yet you always seem so grounded. when you sang without a microphone your beauty and sound bought tears to my eyes. you're truely a free spirit and that shines through your amazing lyrics, your inspiring sound and most of all you stay true to yourself.

i will never forget any of your concerts i go to because each one has opened my eyes, my soul and my mind.

you sir, have a gift.

and to anyone that hasn't been to see ben live, you need to if not to experience him live but to see true talent up close and personal.

peace and love always,


Teuila's picture

Kia Ora All,

Just wanted to add my apperciation to fellow fans awesome comments on this page (Sup Karl) and say that what an awesome night and beautiful concert it was.
I guess you take away from it what you will, and for me (like many others) it was beautiful, inspiring and honest.
Respect for hanging around after the gig to sign stuff for your fans and just to hear our words of graditude. And as for holding the umbrella up for you in the rain, sweet as bro.
Don't leave us hanging for too long bro....Peace

anonymous's picture

Holy crap! how GOOD was that ?!? Awesome, awesome, awesome. Best version of Please Bleed ever (despite the sound system), loved that Spanish solo from Michael Ward during it in fact that dude was awesome all round - respect to Michael. Loved Burn one down, and the unaccompanied vocal solo was also bad ass!

Word round the campfire was that Ben did not particularly like this particular gig - that's cool, perfection is hard to maintain all the time, especially after 7 hours of tattooing (or so the story goes).

I would just like to thank Ben for an awesome night - cheers dude :-)

hohaia141243's picture

Go Mike! (Aside from the random comments, constant flashing of cameras and cellphone screens) It felt like a concert for one - he performs with so much soul and passion that, in such an intimate atmosphere, it felt like he was kicking it in your living room. My third concert and as Djudju confirms its only the non-believers that ruin it - next time stay home and leave your ticket to someone who will enhance the experience. Ben is an amazing man - he has left me awestruck once again. Peace.

anonymous's picture

Yeah last nights gig was really amazing. Awesome when he sang on the edge of the stage without a mic! The sting section did really well too even though they had a few microphone issues.
I do wish people would realise that he doesn't like people yelling out random comments constantly while he plays, he's trying to be in the music and it's distracting to him and the rest of the crowd.
I am a fan from way back and I just have to say in response to Djudju,
I understand why you didn't enjoy the show. Someone who would bother to write something so negative on Ben's site is obviously far from being able to enjoy such an amazing concert.

anonymous's picture

Ben your are so inspirational, that concert was beautiful and I am so glad that I went. My ticket was free and offered to me a week prior. I have not been well lately and I knew it would be a long trip but the decision was not hard. While I am still sick.. your performance healed my heart and your words lifted my soul and mentally I am in a so much better place after losing the guy I love and still hurting a year later. I cried several times for the love of it all, Ben your a wise man of grace, vision and your voice reaches to the soul like no other. THANK YOU TO ALL INVOLVED!!!!! and to the crowd, the most civlised concert I have been to! wooohooo! :D :D :D

carl.ewen62654's picture

That was one of the most amazing gigs that I have ever been to. My first Ben Harper gig.

I waited for 5 1/2 hours outside the St James to get in and it was fully worth it. Ended up front row against the stage and it was spectacular.

Thanks Ben for hanging around afterwards in the rain signing and getting photos taken with us. Fantastic gig, fantastic man.

arnoux.julien85085's picture

What to say?
It was my seventh concert from Ben and for sure it has been the worst...
I don't recognize me in his music anymore, the beginning let me expect a come back to the roots of his music while playing with the slides but it only last 4 songs then for me it wasn't Ben Harper, just a guy playing some crap guitar.
Definitely my love which began 12 years ago is over! During this time I was sure he would become a legend now I am afraid not...
Anyway apparently more and more people like him and everybody was singing while he was playing Diamonds On The Inside which has constituted for him, I guess, the beginning of the end!
Hopefully some new artists are coming and make my ears feel better: John Butler Trio powaaaa!

slinkimalinky43967's picture

Absolutely wicked thanks Ben!
So impressed.
A surprise that it was mainly his older songs rather than ones off his new album, but hey Im not complaining! Fav moment, when Ben sang without the mic, it was magic.
Excellent intimate concert, so glad it was at such a nice venue, and acoustic! A real treat.

Pat's picture

My second concert in from Ben. This one was so close up and personal. Like putty in his hands, we all stood in silence as he sung without a microphone! Just amazing....its hard to describe the atmosphere. Morning Yearning was touching and Please Dont Talk About Murder While Im Eating were personal favourites. Ive never been more inspired to jump onto my acoustic before. Pity the rest of the Innocents didnt come, but that new guy (forgot his name :S) had a great voice and amazing guitar skills. To rate this concert would be silly since it blew anything ive been to out of the water but its certainly an 11/10+.
Couldnt have asked for anything better. Thanks