Ben Harper & the Innocent Criminals reunite for Bluesfest

The much anticipated reunion of Ben Harper & The Innocent Criminals will no doubt be one of the highlights of the 2015 festival calendar. The band will perform only once in Australia and that show is exclusive to Bluesfest.

It’s been seven years since Ben Harper performed with The Innocent Criminals and Bluesfest Director Peter Noble is excited to bring them to Byron.

“You join Ben Harper & The Innocent Criminals with Bluesfest and it’s a very special bond,” Noble said. “It was way back in 1996 when the Festival broke the news that this band was important and in return, their huge success showed us the way forward to booking the style of event the festival is famous for today and one that has been copied all over the world.”

“Bluesfest is their spiritual home and the last time the band performed officially was in 2007 and it was in 2008, when they decided to take a break. They did one impromptu unannounced performance – at Bluesfest in 2011 to the astonishment of their fans – who came expecting to see the RELENTLESS 7. What an unexpected performance, it was pure magic.

“I remember that night in 2011 well: It was all so last minute, to a point where their percussionist bought a djembe drum from a busker in the street in Byron Bay– the home of Bluesfest- for the performance, as he hadn’t brought one with him. It really was so special for everyone – the audience couldn’t believe that they were seeing, perhaps the most influential band to EVER play Bluesfest, back on our stage unannounced and hearing the songs they love once again. I recall the band’s celebrations in the dressing room, after their truly great show, going most of the night – they were all so thrilled to be back together again. What an honour that they chose Bluesfest to reunite and do their first official performance – save for a couple of warm up dates in a club in San Francisco. We have had so many magical moments at Bluesfest – this is surely going to be up there with the best,” Noble said.

Ben Harper & The Innocent Criminals lead a rather impressive second lineup announced today.

Scottish Star Paolo Nutini also tops the 2nd Bluesfest Artist Announcement. Other acts announced:

David Gray
Ben Howard
Counting Crows
Gary Clark Jr
Angelique Kidjo
Jimmy Cliff
Mavis Staples
Dispatch
Ruthie Foster
The Beat
Keziah Jones
Sheppard
Playing for Change

“Ben Harper, Paolo Nutini, David Gray and Ben Howard in the one Bluesfest announcement,” Noble said. “What a line-up, each one of these artists is gold – purely brilliant in their own way. This is starting to shape into one of the great Bluesfest artist bills and we have plenty of artists still to go in future announcements.

Bluesfest playing schedule along with festival and camping tickets are available on www.bluesfest.com.au.

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