Ben Harper & Ellen Harper – Childhood Home (2014) [Qobuz 24bit/44,1kHz]

Ben Harper & Ellen Harper – Childhood Home (2014)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/44,1 kHz  | Time – 33:38 minutes | 353 MB | Genre: Folk
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download – Source: Qobuz | Booklet, Front Cover | © Concord Records

Ben Harper and his mother Ellen have collaborated to create “Childhood Home” an absorbing, deeply personal collection of original songs. Ben Harper grew up in a musical family so it was only natural he’d eventually record with his mother Ellen. The 10 original songs here, six written by Ben and four by Ellen, explore the intricacies of home and family with honesty and intimacy. These story sketches have been carefully crafted by both Harpers and laced with heartfelt love, longing and even pain.

The album’s source can be directly traced to the pair’s highly unusual musical heritage. In 1958, Ben Harper’s maternal grandparents established The Folk Music Center and Museum in Claremont, California. It was there, amid guitars, banjos, tablas, ukuleles and all manner of instruments from around the world, that a distinctively musical family took shape. Ellen Harper, a talented multi-instrumentalist in her own right, … encouraged her family to use the store (which she still operates) as a musical laboratory. The center was a magnet for up-and-comers such as Ry Cooder, David Lindley and Taj Mahal, who became extended family members, providing master classes in creativity and philosophy, all of which the young Ben Harper soaked up like a sponge.

The tender, artfully crafted story sketches on Childhood Home are laced with an undercurrent of love, wistfulness and, sometimes, pain. ‘A house is a home even when there’s ghosts / Even when you gotta run from the ones who love you most,’ Ben sings on the album opener ‘A House Is A Home.’ On ‘Memories of Gold,’ truthfulness cuts through sweet nostalgia: ‘In the winter she wants to be dancer / In springtime she wants to be a scribe /In summer she wants to be a painter / Come autumn the mother of a child.’ Likewise, the sacrifice and despair of domestic life is devotedly delivered on Ellen Harper’s ‘Altar of Love’: ‘He always works late, determines his own fate / He’s found his true match; he’s found his soul mate / Sorry he says, sorry he feels / Can’t help himself, he fell head over heels / And now she’s another wife and a mother / Sacrificed on the alter of love.’

01 – A House Is A Home
02 – City Of Dreams
03 – Born To Love You
04 – Heavyhearted World
05 – Farmer’s Daughter
06 – Memories Of Gold
07 – Altar Of Love
08 – Break Your Heart
09 – Learn It All Again Tomorrow
10 – How Could We Not Believe

Produced by Ben Harper.
Recorded and Mixed by Ethan Allen at The Machine Shop, Santa Monica, CA.
Mastered by Gavin Lurssen at Lurssen Mastering, Los Angeles, CA.

Ben Harper – Weissenborn slide guitar, guitar, autoharp, dulcimer, vocals
Ellen Harper – guitar, banjo, vocals
Jason Mozersky – guitar
Jesse Ingalls – upright bass, keyboards
Jimmy Paxon – drums



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