October 23rd – The Great Hall, Toronto
intimate + calm
the lovely lady india bourne will be supporting him 😉
I’m so deeply in love with the new album. The songs now are deep inside and I enjoy them. Ben has many levels and moods. So the new album is more of a “level 2” kind of listen.
Watching Ben in Toronto this past winter was sweet. Such a sweet show for so many reasons. Below is a rip of the audio from a show in Paris which the new album is played with some encores from the older material.
You can download the second mixtape listed above here from my dropbox and import it into your iTunes.
If you want to download the first Ben Howard Live mixtape I made you can download the older one here with the songs listed on the cover below:
Yes another post about Ben Howard. We know… we know. Two musical artists have never moved me so much as Passenger and Ben Howard. I think Ben Howard is my all time fave. I want to tell the world about him. I want everyone to soak him in and let him grow on you. Everyone that I ask… has never heard of him. A few people close to me have learned more about him and have listened to his songs and he has grown on them.
He is simply incredible. It’s so hard to explain.
I was new to iTunes and I wanted to build my music library and really turn to Music. Oct 31st, 2011… was the day I found out we were going our separate ways with the relationship with my wife… I created a task on my first 101 Things to do in a 1001 days to purchase $100 of music on iTunes from artists I’ve never heard of. (my 101 list, which is now updated with a new 101 things to complete)
So on, November 18th, 2011 I downloaded 4 Ben Howard songs: Only Love, Keep Your Head Up, Further Away and The Fear from the album “Every Kingdom”. I rated them a 5/5 and they played in my tight rotation. Only Love & KYHU was my faves.
September 25th, of 2012… I downloaded: Old Pine, The Wolves, Everything, Black Flies, Gracious and Promise. I can remember listening to them and thinking WTF… why did I not download these songs from Ben in the beginning???? Why did I not like them? I honestly could not figure it out. It opened me up to more feelings with different songs. Everything, Gracious and Promise are more deep and more powerful.
Right before Christmas… the Album was re-released as a deluxe edition that included the Burgh Island EP as well as about 5 more songs… I could not go wrong and I purchased the entire album. I think there is something like 22 songs on that album you can get on iTunes. Some of those songs I purchased on December 23rd of 2012… I rated them as a 2/5 did not get played that much. At that time… when I listened to Diamonds and Bones… it hit me again. Why did I not buy those songs the year before? Diamonds is incredible and Bones is up there also. LOL… what was wrong with me and my ears?
I discovered over some more time that some of the songs I rated a 2/5 were pretty great also and bumped them up to a 4 or 5. Basically… his songs are very slow and deep with meaning and power and he also has some more uplifting songs that get you going. Basically for me. I enjoy every song from the entire album. Not one of them bothers me. I’ve also gone backwards and found other songs that were not officially released and ripped the audio from YouTube. Many of these songs are on my mixtapes in the Sunday Morning and Sunday Afternoon series.
(Above: Introduction to Ben Howard I found on vimeo)
Ben Live: I had the opportunity to see him play at The Sound Academy in 2012 in Toronto and loved it. That was my first real concert I have ever attended. I then discovered that there was some more people in Toronto that knew who he was 😉 Then the summer after that in 2013… I had the chance to see him this summer at Echo Beach at the last minute and it blew my mind because of listening to him so much over the past year and a half. That concert was so good and such a beautiful night. Alison was there in the pen which was so funny and I have no idea if she found my “happy to be in front of Ben face” in the crowd. I have posted so much Ben on my Tumblr and this blog it’s crazy. I even made a mixtape leading up to the concert and ripped the audio from YouTube videos and that played in my ears about 3 weeks before the concert.
The morning after the concert…. I played that mixtape on my iPod and such a huge smile was plastered on my face. it sounded just like the night before.
I find it unique his voice is on certain songs at different points. Even how he breathes to give a certain sound into his songs. Fuck. I could go on and on about him… India and Chris. Don’t get me started about India Bourne, who is my GF.
Watching full concerts on YouTube was also really interesting… and I’ve discovered how to download YouTube videos onto my computer so if I want to watch him whenever I want… I can. Love how he adds to songs when he plays them live. Takes 5min songs and makes them 7-9 minutes with large guitar riffs at the end when the songs are wrapping up. So songs like “The Fear” live is so much different than the recorded version.
Ben Howard to me is like therapy. He really is. His songs make me think, remember, miss, love, want to love, have hope and keep going. I feel bad if your still reading this. But if you are. You must buy his album. I can give you 10 songs to focus on first. Learn them and let them grow into you. Then I’ll give you more songs to listen to. If anyone wants Ben… message me and I’ll send you a link to a folder on my dropbox for you to download and import into iTunes.
Lady India Bourne is a sweet and stunning woman who makes me smile and it’s neat that it started off with them first. Ben asked her if she wanted to go on tour and try and make a “go” of it. They added the Bond Brothers who left the group in 2015. Chris produced the albums and played drums and bass. Ben picked up some other artists when he felt that they should be playing some bigger shows after the success of Every Kingdom and his two Britt Awards.
I was lucky to have gone to his third concert in Toronto at the beginning of 2015 with Little Miss Sweetness at Massey Hall. If you skip along in the video below to the 1:44 mark you will see the clip from my OSE video for Feb 2015 with the concert.
One Second Everyday | Video Six | Feb 2015 from Makeit Count on Vimeo.
It was simply beautiful night. On our way to our seats… we bumped into Bear and Chris Bond sneaking up at the top deck of Massey Hall to stand and check out the venue and the opening act. This concert was such a wonderful night for so many reasons.
Here is some links of things I’ve shared on the blog about Ben:
How he blows my mind when he uses his guitar like this
Download two mixtapes that I’ve made of Ben ripped from concerts
Song Of The Year Quarter Selection (June 1 2015) | Gracious
Song Of The Year Quarter Selection (March 31 2015) | Time Is Dancing
Song Of The Year 2012 | The Fear
Support Ben below by purchasing his albums:
Ben Howard Every Kingdom Album (2012) – Download from iTunes
Ben Howard Burgh Island EP (2012) – Download from iTunes
Ben Howard I Forget Where We Were Album (2014) – Download from iTunes
Here is a couple of songs below:
Ben was at the BBC Radio 1 and did a cover of Hideaway from Kiesza which after posting this post… I will look on Youtube at the song and figure out who Kiesza is. Man… I’m in love with Ben. Enjoy if you have passed Level One.
Holy shit. It’s a cover of a dance song from Kiesza. Can Ben cover all the songs out there and make them “Ben Like”???
The Fear below:
Old Pine below:
Deep Ben below with Esmerelda:
The Wolves below:
Lie in bed and kiss your woman to Ben:
Why do I like Ben Howard so much. So hard to explain. Many different songs for different moods. Then all over a sudden this video comes out and I see his talent in a different way. You have no idea how much his music moves me. I’ve listened over and over to his music and now each song is deep inside. Some songs have so much meaning to me.
This is one example of how Ben Howard blew my mind a little. He is a creative MF’er
Can’t wait till he comes back to Toronto next year…
At the 3:32 mark… is sweetness with India + Ben
Right now… it’s 11:56pm and I’m listening to BBC 1 Live Lounge with Ben Howard who is in studio and he is about to play his entire album live on the radio.
It’s been such a long time with waiting for this album to come out. Ben is actually my fave artist. His music to me is in levels. When I discovered him on itunes on November 18th, 2011.. I only downloaded 4 songs. (Keep Your Head Up, The Fear, Only Love and and Further Away). These songs were at a time in my life that I really needed them. It was 18 days after my wife and partner for 23 years wanted to leave and be on her own. In 2012… I ventured into a little more Ben and downloaded a couple more songs. September 25th of 2012 and almost a full year with only 4 Ben Howard songs, I downloaded Old Pine, Everything, Gracious and Promise. These songs blew me away. They were soft and sweet and made me think of new things.
Then the handle fell off the kettle in December of 2012 and I downloaded every fucking song I could find. Completed the album. Watched all the footage I could find on YouTube and my tumblr exploded with love for Ben & India. My goodness India. Having the chance to watch him twice in concert here in Toronto has been sweet. I’m still waiting for him to return. He just played this past summer at Western Canada at a Folk Fest.
This new is just about to be performed live on BBC Radio 1 where he is going to play the entire album track by track. Something he has not done before. I’m very interested. Honestly… I was not feeling good about this album. I was hearing how Ben was worried that this album was deep and cold and in a way…. I was expecting another album like Every Kingdom with playful riffs on the guitar and warm sweet sounds of Ben & India smiling at each other as they played.
But one thing that was interesting is how Ben’s music has changed and I fell in love with the colder and deeper songs like Esmerelda, Oats In The Water, Burgh Island and To Be Alone.
Ok… let’s get to why this blog post is here. The reason I got off the couch after falling asleep and waking up after reading the reaction on Tumblr to tonight’s BBC 1 Live having Ben and the gang in the studio to play the entire album track by track.
After some tracks has been released on his fourth album “I Forget Where We Were”… I started to get excited. It started with “End Of The Affair” and followed by “I Forget Where We Were” and now “Conrad”. I’m excited as shit.
Just for tonight… let’s rate them from 1 to 3. 1 will be something that I’m not digging yet. 2 is in the middle and I enjoy. 2A will be something that I enjoy and I want to listen to more and appreciate it. 2B will be something that I’m excited about and will be more on repeat. 3 is hitting me inside and I love for the mood it brings me.
Small Things: (2A/3) I’m digging the delayed guitar on this opening track. This song comes in at 5:43 in length. Hello India! It’s 12:34am now and I don’t know if I will be able to get all the lyrics and comprehend it. I’m also typing this as the album is playing. Love the quick little jabs of guitar. This is sort of a “Lost In Transition” song that I would find on my mixtape and would be perfect for a nice walk outside alone. Last night, I ripped the audio from YouTube of him playing Small Things and I like the acoustic version that I listened to this morning on my way to work and home again. You can listen to Ben play “Small Things” live on the radio here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AwfU5UuP5K8
Rivers In Your Mouth: (2A/3) Love the opening 10 seconds. Drums… then… wait for it… wait for it…. sweet goodness. A quicker pace on the second track. 12:45am. India is with him again for this one. I wish the lyrics were online for these. So far… 2 songs I would like playing in my earbuds and I would not want to “skip” them. ooooowww Ben is raising his voice. With more tracks to come… I’m leaving this at 2A on my scale… but it could be ranked a B when the dust settles. 5:11 in length.
I Forget Where We Were: (3/3) This song is fucking awesome. I’ve been listening to this song for about 3 weeks now. Yes… “Hello Love…” This song fucks with me inside. Three songs in… and I’m wondering if this will be my top fave on the album. Jesus… the words in this song. India, your playing with me. 4:41 in length. Watch and listen to this song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DA5aJFZ6GU4
Ben is cute. It’s hitting him that he is going to play track by track the whole album. Would love to know what is going through his mind as he wonders what the reaction to his new songs from so many fans that have begged for a year and asked the band when new material is going to come out.
In Dreams: (2A/3) Oh shit. Interesting. 3:33 in length. This is another song… I’ve listened to this morning but acoustic. It has the “old Ben” feel with the clever lyrics and guitar. This song is building. India is playing the “Big Thing” 😉 This song will grow on me. You can listen to the acoustic version here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nqeYrWaynyc
She Treats Me Well: (3/3) Finger picking. Love the opening. 12:59am. Sweet India again. I think with where I am in my life… this song is deeper inside me. India plays along with him very well on this song and this is the first song. Simple classic Ben on the guitar. Playful Ben laughing at playing along with India. Must be so nice for them to play new music and feel like a “little kid” playing something new and fun. 5:17 in length.
Ben’s having a little drink and gathering his thoughts before starting the next track.
Time Is Dancing: (2B and maybe a 3/3) It’s a hidden sleeper and will grow on me. 6:49 in length for this one. So far as this one starts… I’m digging the new album. Happy so far. Different feel on the guitar for this one. India again is singing along with him word for word. 1:09am. This song has an underlying beat that is steady and it’s a song that makes you think about your life and where you are on this earth.
Evergreen: (2A/3) This one starts off slow and India is right with him on this one. It’s a slower track and something you would find on my “Lost In Transition” mix. 4:04 in length for this track. So happy with this album so far. I’m not scared anymore. 😉
End Of The Affair: (3/3) 1:16am and Ben and the band is tuning their instruments. Love his shyness. I hope someone adds this feed to YouTube so I can rip this quick and get it on the ipod. End Of The Affair is starting and I’ve also had this one on the iPod for about 3 weeks. It’s a little “Esmerelda” without the anger that I feel inside. This song is two parts. The first part is quiet and then it gets rough and deep. 1:22am and shits going to get real in this song now that the second part is starting. “Your Ex is an idiot” and makes me shake my head.
Conrad: (3/3) Sweets listened to this song first before me. Love how this song opens up. Sweet song and has an “Old Pine” feeling for me. 1:28am and I’m happy. This song goes for 6:08 in length. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OYR6A47DK-Q This song might be my fave and would beat out the title track. Just because it makes me happy and it’s a perfect song for the morning. 1:33am and that song rocked.
All Is Now Harmed: (2A/3) Drums 😉 Light song and it just started. This one will come in at 5:02 in length. India is right with him on this one. This is the final track on the album.
His new album comes out on Oct 20th of this year. I’m going to buy this one just outright on iTunes. Tomorrow night… he will play the iTunes Festival… which I’m excited as shit to watch. I don’t know when I can command the TV and hook up the laptop and play it loud. I will do that the first opportunity I can. No idea what he will play. I’m sure he will play some old faves from Every Kingdom mixed in with tracks from the new album. Can’t wait for tomorrow night on the big TV or on my laptop with earbuds if that can’t happen for a while. It’s a couple of minutes before 2am. I should get to bed. I’m up in 5 hours. 😉
Night world. Be kind to us all.
00:00 – Black Flies
07:25 – The Wolves
14:45 – Only Love
20:28 – Keep Your Head Up
26:58 – The Fear
I ripped this YouTube concert from just a little while ago. It does not have any of the new songs… but it’s a good little mix of some key songs from Every Kingdom. Great for the new Ben Howard fan or someone seasoned. 😉