Thursday, December 5, 2019

The Kinks - BBC Sessions, Volume 6: Christmas Concert - Rainbow Theatre, London, Britain, 12-24-1977

I'm continuing to post a series of what I consider are the best Kinks concert recordings. The emphasis there is on "recordings," because the Kinks were usually very good in concert, but only rarely were entire concerts recorded at the very highest sound quality.

It so happens that 1977 saw two such concerts, one right at the beginning of the year, and the other right at the end. I've already posted one, which you can find here:

It so happens that the two 1977 concerts have fairly different setlists, so I think it's worth it to post both of them. This second concert was performed on Christmas Eve, so it's widely known as the "Christmas Concert." It was recorded for the TV show "Old Grey Whistle Test," and shown on BBC TV at the time. (The Kinks played some other songs for that same show in March 1977, and I've included those on one of my "At the BBC" collections.) Thus, I've included this in my BBC Sessions album series.

This is widely considered one of the best Kinks concert recordings. I've even seen it on a blogger's list of the best bootlegs of all time. The only downside is that it's a mere hour long, instead of the usual hour and-a-half to two-hour-long concert the Kinks did in those years. I'm guessing that's because the Old Grey Whistle Test had an hour-long format. I don't know if the Kinks played more songs that didn't make the show, but if they did, I can't find any trace of them anywhere.

Probably due to the time limitation, the Kinks put on a very tight concert, with relatively little talking between songs. In fact, several songs quickly follow each other, or even could be considered parts of medleys. I've separated what little talking there is onto separate tracks.

UPDATE: On February 17, 2021, I updated the mp3 download file. I changed the album title to add this album to my series of Kinks BBC Sessions albums. The songs are all exactly the same, but I changed the mp3 tags to reflect the fact that I changed the name of the album. I also changed the cover art.

01 Juke Box Music (Kinks)
02 Sleepwalker (Kinks)
03 Life on the Road (Kinks)
04 talk (Kinks)
05 A Well Respected Man (Kinks)
06 Death of a Clown (Kinks)
07 Sunny Afternoon (Kinks)
08 Waterloo Sunset (Kinks)
09 All Day and All of the Night (Kinks)
10 talk (Kinks)
11 Slum Kids (Kinks)
12 talk (Kinks)
13 Celluloid Heroes (Kinks)
14 talk (Kinks)
15 Get Back in the Line (Kinks)
16 talk (Kinks)
17 The Hard Way (Kinks)
18 Lola (Kinks)
19 Alcohol (Kinks)
20 Skin and Bone - Them Bones (Kinks)
21 Father Christmas (Kinks)
22 You Really Got Me (Kinks)

For the cover art, I used an actual screenshot from the concert in question, since it was shown on TV. The best image I could find shows just the head of Ray Davies, instead of the whole band. When I updated the album in February 2021, I stripped the black background behind Davies and replaced that with the same sort of background that I used in all the other BBC Sessions albums.


  1. This one should be really good! Have you thought about posting more Neil Young soon? I'd love to have some more live shows.

    1. I should, and I'll get on that. I guess the reason he hasn't been a priority for me is because he's released a lot of really good archival stuff officially (including plenty of live stuff), compared to other artists of similar stature who have released little to none.

    2. Also, over at Doom And Gloom From The Tomb [], they've been posting pretty good NY&CH boots for a while now.

    3. That's a nice blog, though I find it nearly impossible to successfully search its archives, with the way it's arranged.

  2. Thanks ! How is it compared to the 12-23rd show ?

    1. The one on the 23rd is significantly longer, at almost two hours long. But the sound quality is significantly worse. I don't have it in my collection because it doesn't make the grade for me in terms of sound quality. But you may feel differently if sound quality isn't such a big issue for you.