Ben Harper

2013 MusiCares Person of the Year Honoring Bruce Springsteen - Arrivals

Harper in 2013, photo by Prphotos

Birth Name: Benjamin Chase Harper

Place of Birth: Claremont, Los Angeles, California, United States

Date of Birth: October 28, 1969

Ethnicity:
*50% African-American
*37.5% Ashkenazi Jewish
*12.5% English

Ben Harper is an American singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist. He released a track, “Boa Sorte/Good Luck,” that was number one in Brazil and Portugal in 2007.

Ben is the son of Ellen and Leonard Harper. His father is African-American. His mother is of one quarters English and three quarters Ashkenazi Jewish descent. Her own paternal grandfather was of English ancestry, with colonial American roots in New Hampshire.

Ben has two children with his former wife, actress Laura Dern, and two children from another previous marriage. Ben’s maternal grandparents, Dorothy and Charles Chase, founded the Folk Music Center and Museum in Claremont, California, in 1957.

Ben’s paternal grandfather was Leonard Edward Harper (the son of Robert Delaney Harper and Edna Duncan). Ben’s grandfather Leonard was born in Missouri, and was African-American. Leonard was killed in action in World War II, on January 11, 1945, when Ben’s father was a small infant.

Ben’s paternal grandmother was Tommie Lee Swayne (the daughter of Thomas Swayne and Linney Rozier). Tommie was born in California, and was African-American.

Ben’s maternal grandfather was Charles Chase (the son of Fred Bates Chase and Elba/Ella/Alma E. Korb). Ben’s grandfather Charles was born in Massachusetts, and was raised on a farm in New Hampshire. Ben’s great-grandfather Fred was born in New Hampshire, and was the son of Joseph Chase and Victoria E. Bates. He was of English (Colonial American) background. Ben’s great-grandmother Elba was a Russian Jewish/Latvian Jewish immigrant, the daughter of Myer Korb and Rebecca Bloom.

Ben’s maternal grandmother was Dorothy Edna Udin (the daughter of Albert Udin and Bess/Bessie Aronoff/Aranoff). Dorothy was born in Massachusetts, to a Russian Jewish father and a Latvian Jewish mother.

Sources: Genealogy of Ben Harper (heavily incorrect) – https://www.geni.com

Marriage record of Ben’s paternal grandparents, Leonard Edward Harper and Tommie Lee Swayne – https://www.familysearch.org

Obituary of Ben’s paternal grandmother, Tommie Lee (Swayne) Harper – https://www.legacy.com

Genealogy of Ben’s mother (focusing on her father’s side) – https://www.geni.com

Marriage record of Ben’s maternal grandparents, Charles Chase and Dorothy Edna Udin – https://www.familysearch.org

Ben’s maternal grandfather, Charles Chase, on the 1920 U.S. Census – https://www.familysearch.org
Charles Chase on the 1930 U.S. Census – https://www.familysearch.org

Obituary of Ben’s maternal grandfather, Charles Chase – https://www.latimes.com

Marriage record of Ben’s maternal great-grandparents, Fred Bates Chase and Elba/Ella/Alma E. Korb – https://www.familysearch.org

Ben’s maternal great-grandfather, Fred Bates Chase, on the 1910 U.S. Census – https://www.familysearch.org

Marriage record of Ben’s maternal great-great-grandparents, Joseph Chase and Victoria E. Bates – https://www.familysearch.org

Genealogy of Ben’s maternal great-great-grandmother, Victoria E. (Bates) Chase (focusing on her father’s side) – https://www.geni.com

Birth records of Ben’s maternal grandmother, Dorothy Edna Udin – https://www.familysearch.org
https://www.familysearch.org

Ben’s maternal grandmother, Dorothy Edna Udin, on the 1930 U.S. Census – https://www.familysearch.org

Obituary of Ben’s maternal grandmother, Dorothy Edna (Udin) Chase – https://www.latimes.com

Marriage record of Ben’s maternal great-grandparents, Albert Udin and Bess/Bessie Aronoff/Aranoff – https://www.familysearch.org

ethnic

Curious about ethnicity

13 Responses

  1. andrew says:

    If so Ben’s Geni.com profile is more than “heavily” incorrect.

  2. sarahle says:

    Before people discuss Judaism… you’ve got to learn what does BEING jewish means and what defines being jewish… then you’ll see what “Jewishness” means! Judaism is for all the most a lifestyle!

      • follers says:

        I wonder if there is any proof? Many African-Americans are said to have Native American ancestry, but often it turns out they don’t.

        • fuzzybear44 says:

          @follers

          So far that does seem to be the case.However, it doesn’t look like they’ve really tested that many.Dr. Sarah Tishkoff admits,shes only tested 98 people.Gates only tested,what 50 people,with 3 having native blood if I remember right. George lopez tested 2,but they both had native blood.So far,I don’t think enough people have been tested for us to come to a conclusion yet.

          • follers says:

            I’m not even sure I believe many, most, or all, of those tests. Larry David turned up 37% Native American on George Lopez’s show and I’m sure he had no American ancestors before 1850.

          • fuzzybear44 says:

            @follers

            (I’m not even sure I believe many, most, or all, of those tests. Larry David turned up 37% Native American on George Lopez’s show and I’m sure he had no American ancestors before 1850.)

            Well see there you go,those test might not have been accurate. Every time Michelle Rodriguez takes a test,her results change.so who knows.Although I do remember reading about natives moving to Europe.I don’t remember where or when,so don’t quote me on it.

          • andrew says:

            Ben’s paternal grandparents surnames are Harper and Begay (Geni.com)

            “Begay” is a Native American (Navajo) surname

            Wow

          • andrew says:

            -> Charles Chase and Dorothy Verdries

  3. mrsjb says:

    Jewish is not an ethnicity

    • Anonymous says:

      In fact, it is. “Jewish” denotes race/ethnicity as well as religion. Jews are descended from Abraham.

      • fuzzybear says:

        To anonymous

        jewish is not a race all to itself,it a culture that speaks the semitic language(part of the afro-asia language group),now if you want to call that their ethnicity that’s fair.Also it began with africans who began the arabs just because the arabs seem to have forgotten that,doesn’t change the fact

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