10 Jun 2000

Melbourne, Australia

Ben Harper & The Innocent Criminals

with Wicked Beat Sound System

Festival Hall

Saturday, June 10, 2000 at 7:00pm PDT

Ben spoke about Aboriginal reconciliation, and how the reconciliation march in Sydney a few days before had warmed his heart. He said he felt excited for the future because the time was coming when our generation would be stepping into the shoes of the "pasty old men...and they're always men..." in government. He also made a joke about one of his parents being black and the other white, so he had the right to hate both races equally...and quickly made sure everyone knew he was joking :) At one point, someone yelled out, "We can't help loving you Ben!" Ben stopped and said how he loved the fans too. During "Steal My Kisses" Ben stopped playing and danced with the band while the bass and percussion solos were being played. "I'll Rise" was sung without guitar with Ben standing in the middle of the stage with one fist raised. Towards the end he stepped away from the microphone and sung without it, stopping the crowd screaming with a gesture. Everyone was silent until he finished, then went crazy.