Stoners Don’t Like the Time Ben Harper Yelled at Us

Sure, you’d think two-time Grammy Award winner, guitarist extraordinaire Ben Harper is all patchouli-reakin’ easy going,  hippy-dippy like Lenny Kravitz. Or that the cat has more cool cred than Jack Johnson. Or that he’d be all super cool to share a joint with, right?  Uh…you’d be surprised, dude.

Years ago, Stuff Stoners Like were like Almost Famous. We used to interview drunk and sloppy rock and roll stars for a living. That’s how Stuff Stoners Like got its start…writing about bands for such cool mags as Thrasher and Surfer to name just a couple. Listen, ask us about the time we toured with Marilyn Manson and caught him crying or the time Mark McGrath yelled at us because we got his guitar player really high or the time we showed up to interview our pal Bradley of Sublime only to find that he died moments earlier. We’ll tell those stories over a bowl someday, but first let us tell you about the time Ben Harper was all mean to the Stuff Stoners Like crew. Oh and sorry for the name droppin’ lame-ness…we won’t be doing that shit anymore, now that we got your attention.

Years ago Ben Harper was opening for PJ Harvey and set to play a gig at San Francisco’s Warfield Theater. We were getting paid to meet up and interview Harper for a skateboarding/snowboarding mag outta Sacramento called Heckler.Like we always do, we show up completely stoned out of our heads, munchies raging and plagued with major cotton mouth. We find Harper’s dressing room and it’s empty aside from a couple of huge platters of food and a giant garbage can filled to the brim with ice and bottled beer. Who the hell could drink a 55 gallon garbage can full of beer? An even better question, who would notice if a couple of those beers were missing?

We’re waiting for like five minutes before we start walking around the room a bit. “Man, this Ben Harper, dude, sure has a lotta delicious beer here,” we’re thinking.  “Nobody’s around…who knows how long we gotta hang back and wait for BEN Harper to show up. He’s late, man, so uh…what do you say we grab a couple brews?”

It’s pro’lly a bad idea, but we eventually reach in for a couple of beers. Of course, there’s no bottle opener to be found. We all start scrounging around for something to use to pop the top off the pilfered Heinekens and one of us wanders into a connected room. Lo and behold…there’s Ben Harper…hiding.

Apparently, he’s been listening the whole time. Why he doesn’t come on out and introduce himself, we’ll never know. Anyhow, he leaps up off a dresser as if he owns the place and sharply says, “What the Fuck, man…ever hear of asking?”

We’re all taken by surprise. Each of us feels like a total loser. Everyone knows it’s not cool to walk into a place and snag a beer so we all reach the same conclusion and start to apologize. Ben ain’t really having it so we all start to apologize a bit more profusely, but Harper has the floor and he’s in the mood for a lecture.

So this Ben Harper dude goes on to chew us out about how he’s on tour for soooo long and that he misses his stuff and his home and that he considers his “dressing room like his home away from home” and all this woe is me bullshit. It’s cool, we figure. It was rude of us not to ask…and we admitted it… aplogized and eventually Harper shrugged it off . We figure it’s a done deal. But, noooooooo….

Mr.  Harper’s all cool as hell the rest of the interview and we actually start to kind of like the guy. He tells us about how much he loves his parents and what it was like growing up as the kid of musicians who owned a music store in the Inland Empire…blah blah blah. Peace has been restored.

We chat up the rest of the Innocent Criminals or whatever the fuck they were called back then and on our way out…ask the drummer dude if we could grab a couple of beers for the road. He says cool. Sayten grabs a beer, someone else grabs some water and tosses it in her purse and off  we go.

But, poor Sayten’s got a hole in his pocket. The beer falls through the hole…and as he’s bending over to grab it out from his pant leg…guess who walks out of his dressing room?

“What the FUCK, man,” shouts Haper, “didn’t I tell you not to DISRESPECT ME, MOTHERFUCKER,” he screams…getting right into Sayen’s face causing this huge scene. He abruptly snatches the beer outta Sayten’s hand. We’re shocked. He then turns to Sayten’s photographer, who’s a tinly li’l thing, about 4′.5″ and rips her purse open and riffles through it, shouting in her face the whole time. He finds the bottled water and tosses it to one of his lackeys. We try and explain that we asked…and of course, drummer boy, who’s pro’lly as afraid of Haper as we are, pusses out when Harper asks if it was true that we asked “permission”. Ben talks some more shit and then has us thrown out of the venue (PJ Harvey’s peeps let us right back in-BTW).  And, on top of that Ben Harper has the nerve to get his road manager to call some of our editors and tell them how we tried to “steal his beer”. So, uh…word to the wise, man…don’t ever take one of Ben Harper’s beers without asking.

15 Responses to “Stoners Don’t Like the Time Ben Harper Yelled at Us”

  1. Deew-nixon

    that sucks, the guys has to have money and he is bitchin a beer. takes a real tough guy to yell in a girls face. he deserves to get ktfo.

  2. josh

    don’t have a e-mail address for you to pollute……. i don’t believe a word of this bullshit…..

  3. Ariel

    Lmao sounds like he needed to smoke something and chill tf out.

  4. Allen

    Thanks for the head’s-up on Ben’s beer. Here’s a word to the wise for ol’ Ben, ” Hey Ben, get that corn cob out your ass and you’ll feel a whole lot better.” What do you think guys and gals a prescription for some of TGA’s Pandora’s Box? A few bowls of that should set ol’ Ben straight.

  5. Allen

    @Josh Did Ben break off a piece of that corn cob for ya? Or maybe you got your knee pads on when Ben comes around.

  6. whatup

    What a dick..last time I listen to his stuff

  7. Jason

    Sounds like a bunch of pretentious hot shots with a sense of inflated self importance got put into their place if you ask me… It’s no secret Ben Harper does not like interviews. They weren’t your beers. qqmoar.

  8. mydirtyhobby

    very nice put up, i definitely love this web site, carry on it

  9. Wes

    Yea, he’s been a pretentious doucher in all the interviews I’ve seen him in. He is so full of shit too. That being said BH and the Innocent Criminals is one of my favorite bands. I haven’t liked anything he’s written since Both Sides of the Gun.

  10. Matt Reynolds

    So essentially you wrote this article to trash someone who was kind enough to allow you to come to his job and interview him, but got upset when you tried to steal from his hard working band and crew… Did it ever cross your mind that at the end of the night, the people who bust ass to put on that show night after night might like to enjoy a beer or 2, which might not be there when some hack tabloid reporter wanna-be decides just because no one is around it’s up for grabs? Your sense of entitlement and lack of respect for an artists backstage quarters (which IS HIS HOME) tells me you need to find another career… You certainly aren’t welcome in my backstage. Ben Harpers career certainly didn’t need any whatever shitty article you would have written if he had let you rob him blind…

  11. Austin Patton

    Love for everyone should not be shown in this manner. I could see having a bad day or even being down that would do it to me. I hope he is a better human then that. Just remember I love you all. Have fun and love alot. Peace.

  12. angela

    This situation could have been such a fantastic publicity stunt instead. He could of made it chill had beers with you guys because obviously he was missing his fam jam. Then you would of had an amazing experience to tell would have made him look awesome to bad. So sorry you got yelled at he should be better then that

  13. ribble

    What a douchbag

  14. Gordon Johnson

    When the band Darlingside arrived at Rough Trade Brooklyn to play, Ben Harper had already taken over their Greenroom even though
    a member of Darlingside was deathly ill and wanted to rest before the show. If it walks like a dick and talks like a dick……

  15. Stupid High Ass

    Suck Nigga Dix…all of you fraud homos!

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