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Ben Harper Turns Guitar Troubles Into Triumph at All Points West

August 10, 2008 11:06 PM ET

After spending the first 10 minutes of his set fixing puzzling over a malfunctioning guitar with a slew of equally perplexed roadies, Ben Harper and the Innocent Criminals got themselves out of jail with an impeccably played and impressively varied set on All Points West's final day. Although the rock-tinged numbers allowed Harper to indulge the guitar-solo lover in him, it was the softer folk-reggae of "Excuse Me Mister" that got the early evening stoners swaying in a lightly bombed unison.

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Song Stories

“Love Is the Answer”

Utopia | 1977

The message of the Beatles' "All You Need Is Love" proved to be a universal and long-lasting one, which Utopia revisited 10 years later on this ballad. "From a lyrical standpoint, it's part of a whole class of songs that I write, which are about filial love," Todd Rundgren explained. "I'm not a Christian, but it's called Christian love, the love that people are supposed to naturally feel because we are all of the same species. That may be mythical, but it's still a subject." Though "Love Is the Answer" wasn't a hit, a cover version two years later by England Dan & John Ford Coley peaked at Number Ten on the Billboard singles chart.

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