Though I often proclaim my love for music on this blog, my personal attempts at music creation have seemed to crash and burn. Apart from a brief stint playing the trumpet, and later as a member of a virtuouso extremely underground rap crew, my most recent foray into the world of music making has been with my ukulele. The always optimistic instrument has challenged me the last few years, and although I succeeded in my original goal of being able to decently play IZ's version of "Over the Rainbow," I hit a plateau fairly quickly. Ben Harper is a wizard of instruments (growing up in his grandparents' music store in Claremont didn't hurt) and never seems to be afraid of cutting everything away from his songs until only the bare bones remains. In his recent acoustic tour which went through New Zealand, Harper brought his uke along and plays a minimalist version of "Suzie Blue" that I love. Giving a completely different feel to the song which was originally featured on his 1999 album Burn To Shine, Harper also helps out the beleaguered instrument gain some clout in its eternal quest to do so. Check out the .mp3 of the live version, the video of the live version, and an .mp3 of the album version all below.
Download Ben Harper Suzie Blue (Live Acoustic Ukulele)
Download Ben Harper and the Innocent Criminals Suzie Blue