State Theatre Portland
Ben Harper

WCLZ Presents An Acoustic Evening with

Ben Harper

Grace Woodroofe

Sat, October 6, 2012

Doors: 7:00 pm / Show: 8:00 pm

State Theatre

Portland, ME

$55, $45, $35 / Reserved Seating

Sold Out

This event is all ages

Buy tickets in person at the Cumberland County Civic Center Box Office, charge by phone at 800-745-3000 and online at The State Theatre Box Office will be open one hour before doors on night of show.

Ben Harper
Ben Harper
"I've never made a record that was such a timeline," says Ben Harper of his new album, Give Till It's Gone. "It's a real extension of the last year and half in my life, and all these sounds are inspired by my experiences. It's as honest a musical statement as I could make."
The recent past has certainly seen Harper at a creative peak, juggling several high-profile, far-flung projects. Yet somewhere amidst all this activity, he found the time and the focus to write a new set of songs that represents the most personal and diverse collection in his career. The first clue to his intentions can be found in the fact that Give Till It's Gone is credited simply to Ben Harper. "You can't tell which band is playing—it just sounds like me," he says. "I wanted to create a fresh sound that was also directly connected to the feel of everything I've ever done." The songs on Give Till It's Gone are nothing less than a revelation. They express one man's struggle, confusion, and, ultimately, redemption. Harper lays it all out in "Don't Give Up On Me Now," the album's opening track. "I need to change/I don't know how," he sings. "You can wait your whole life not knowing what you're waiting for." Elsewhere, he offers both defiance and tenderness, veering from fury in "Dirty Little Lover" to the surrender of "Feel Love." At times, his fears and his vulnerability are almost too much to bear; "my last line of defense is gone," he pleads in "Pray That Our Love Sees the Dawn." Harper has never been afraid to dig deep into his emotions for his songs, but there's a sense of maturity and experience on Give Till It's Gone that add new
weight to his efforts.
In the end, Harper hangs on to hope, and to a sense that love still offers a road to salvation. "Do It For You, Do It For Us," the album's final song, celebrates "the trinity of honor, love, and trust." And ever since spending his childhood growing up in his family's instrument store, he still believes in the cathartic power of music.
Grace Woodroofe
Grace Woodroofe
With her uniquely warm, husky, and sometimes mournful voice, Grace Woodroofe is about to make a special mark on the music scene.

At just twenty years of age, Perth-born Grace possesses wisdom and artistry well beyond her years. Forming a bond with music as a teenager, Grace taught herself to play guitar and sing.

"I was greatly inspired by blues singers, and developed my own blues indie sound," she says. At the age of sixteen, Grace's demo was placed in the capable hands of Ben Harper by none other than the late Heath Ledger.

"I got an email from Heath saying 'I think you make really honest, pure music, and I want to help you get it out there'. Heath flew me out to LA, and he organised for me to do some recordings with several producers that he thought could help me. That's when I first met Ben."

Ben led her into the studio, and together they began creating her debut self-titled album. "It started when I was 16, and I'm 20 now, and it's taken a lot of work. This wouldn't have happened if I didn't have my heart and soul into it, and it wasn't meant to happen. It happened because it needed to."

Both determined and introspective, Grace explains, "Most of the songs on the album were written in my bedroom in the dark in the early morning. I put my guitar in my lap, closed my eyes and the songs just released themselves."

With a deep, honeyed huskiness, Grace creates incredible observations of life, youth, love and death. "It's definitely a dark album," she reveals. "The songwriting is very honest on my behalf, and it's very much written from a personal perspective. I wouldn't know what else to write about and I do feel like I'm exposing myself. Especially when I play a live show, I feel so emotionally exhausted because I've just given so much of myself."

Grace has been developing her stunning live show for the last two years, with the encouragement of Ben. "When I was living in LA, I was playing in some small clubs and I opened for Ben on his Californian tour. I learnt a lot and matured a lot there. I was away by myself there for eight months, and I pushed myself out of my comfort zone, and I was inspired so much."

Grace's time away from home was rewarded with a glowing review from LA Weekly who announced her show was 'powerful, dynamic and striking'. She has since performed several shows, at Byron Bay's own East Coast Blues and Roots Festival and Perth's Ellington Jazz Festival. In August 2010, Grace joined Ben Harper and his full orchestra on stage at Splendour In The Grass to play a mesmerizing rendition of one of her original songs, 'I've Handled Myself Wrong' in front of the 30,000 strong crowd.

In the words of Mr. Ben Harper himself, 'You are not going to believe this girl'.
Venue Information:
State Theatre
609 Congress St
Portland, ME, 04101