Saturday, March 30, 2024


I'm off for spring break (to New Orleans). I'll be back in about a week. So there won't be any new posts until then.

I haven't been posting much recently, but I've been busy behind the scenes getting ready to post another big rock festival. So expect that shortly after I get back.

Friday, March 29, 2024

Ron Sexsmith - Reasons to Believe, Volume 5: 2009-2012

Once again, here's another in a long series of stray tracks albums for Canadian singer-songwriter Ron Sexsmith.

If you like the previous volumes, you should like this one too. I don't have much else to say, other than to explain where the songs come from.

All but the last two songs have been officially released. Those two are from concert bootlegs. The other songs are generally from tribute albums, appearances on albums by other musicians, and bonus tracks. Tracks 7 through 9 are bonus tracks from the 2011 album "Long Player Late Bloomer."

There are more originals on this one than the previous volumes, I think. The three bonus tracks mentioned above are originals. So are the two songs with Carlos Fregtman (tracks 4 and 5). "Love Shines" is another original, from the "Long Player Late Bloomer" album, but track 12 is a solo acoustic version done in concert.

"Day Is Done," originally by Nick Drake, is the sole bonus track. It's a lovely version, but unfortunately it's from an audience concert bootleg, and the sound quality isn't as good as the rest.

Thanks again to Pete BBBB for help in putting this together and figuring out the original artists for each song, as he's done for the whole "Reason to Believe" series.

This album is 45 minutes long, not including the bonus track.

Here's a list of the original artists for each song:

01 Crayon Angels - Judee Sill
02 Broken in Two - Krista Hartman
03 When I Need You - Leo Sayer
04 Ghost of a Chance - Carlos Fregtman & Ron Sexsmith
05 Thoughts and Prayers - Carlos Fregtman & Ron Sexsmith
06 Broken Hearted People - Guy Clark
07 Next Time - Ron Sexsmith
08 Wooden Toys - Ron Sexsmith
09 Chambermaid - Ron Sexsmith
10 I Surrender Dear - Bing Crosby
11 Give Me Love [Give Me Peace on Earth] - George Harrison
12 Love Shines - Ron Sexsmith
13 Good Old Desk - Harry Nilsson
Day Is Done - Nick Drake

Here's the usual song list:

01 Crayon Angels (Ron Sexsmith)
02 Broken in Two (Krista Hartman & Ron Sexsmith)
03 When I Need You (Albert Hammond with Ron Sexsmith)
04 Ghost of a Chance (Carlos Fregtman & Ron Sexsmith)
05 Thoughts and Prayers (Carlos Fregtman & Ron Sexsmith)
06 Broken Hearted People (Ron Sexsmith)
07 Next Time (Ron Sexsmith)
08 Wooden Toys (Ron Sexsmith)
09 Chambermaid (Ron Sexsmith)
10 I Surrender Dear (Alex Pangman & Ron Sexsmith)
11 Give Me Love [Give Me Peace on Earth] (Ron Sexsmith)
12 Love Shines (Ron Sexsmith)
13 Good Old Desk (Ron Sexsmith & the Silver Ages)

Day Is Done (Ron Sexsmith)

The cover photo is from 2011. I don't know the details.

Thursday, March 28, 2024

Various Artists - Prince's Trust Rock Gala, Royal Albert Hall, London, Britain, 6-5-1988

The Prince's Trust is a charity founded by then Prince Charles, the British crown prince. (He is now King Charles III) as I write this in 2024.) There have been a bunch of benefit concerts for the charity, each with many stars participating. Here's another one.

These Prince's Trust concerts have happened in a very irregular pace. I've already posted benefit concerts from 1982, 1986, and 1987. This one is from 1988. There were more from 1989 and 1990, so it started to seem like an annual thing. However, I think the next one after that took place in 1996. There have been at least five more since then, although I may well be missing some.

This one was similar to the previous two in similar ways. The concert started with some newer acts, like T'Pau and Wet Wet Wet, and they played more songs than one might expect, given the stature of the other acts in the concert. Both T'Pau and Wet Wet Wet actually played four songs each, according to setlists, but I only have two from T'Pau and three from Wet Wet Wet. I can't say I'm lamenting the missing songs, since I don't think one could compare them with nearly all of the acts that came later. Rick Astley and Black were a couple other acts that appeared early, and played the one big hit each of them was known for.

After that, there were many of the same "usual suspects" who played in previous Prince's Trust concerts, such as Phil Collins, Elton John, Howard Jones, Mark Knoplfer, and Eric Clapton. But there were some first timers too, like Leonard Cohen, the Bee Gees, Peter Gabriel, and Joe Cocker. It's frustrating to me that you have someone like Peter Gabriel, whose most recent album at the time, "So," had sold five million copies in the U.S. alone, only getting to play one song. But it is what it is, I guess.

I don't know the exact details, but I believe that many of the big stars backed each other towards the end of the concert, as was the case in previous years. Because people pay extra close attention to Eric Clapton's guitar playing, I was able to find out that once he took the stage with track 26 ("Behind the Mask"), he stayed on stage for the rest of the concert, including playing guitar on songs sung by Knoplfer, John, and Cocker.

Similarly, I was able to determine that Brian May of Queen didn't sing lead vocals on any songs, but he played lead guitar on a bunch of them: tracks 6, 8, 10, 16, 19, 24, 26, and 35. John Deacon, the bassist for Queen, also apparently played on some songs.

Currently, I'm only able to find a few songs from the 1989 and 1990 concerts. If anyone has the full concerts, please let me know. I may try to post the 1996 concert, but I'm probably missing about half of that one.

This album is two hours and two minutes long.

01 Heart and Soul (T'Pau)
02 China in Your Hand (T'Pau)
03 talk (Wet Wet Wet)
04 Wishing I Was Lucky (Wet Wet Wet)
05 Sweet Little Mystery - Twist and Shout (Wet Wet Wet)
06 Dancing with Tears in My Eyes (Midge Ure)
07 talk (Midge Ure & Rick Astley)
08 Never Gonna Give You Up (Rick Astley)
09 talk (Rick Astley & Black)
10 Wonderful Life (Black)
11 talk (Black & Leonard Cohen)
12 Tower of Song (Leonard Cohen)
13 talk (Phil Collins)
14 Doesn't Anyone Stay Together Anymore (Phil Collins)
15 talk (Phil Collins & the Bee Gees)
16 You Win Again (Bee Gees)
17 Jive Talkin' (Bee Gees)
18 talk (Bee Gees & Peter Gabriel)
19 Sledgehammer (Peter Gabriel)
20 talk (Peter Gabriel & Howard Jones)
21 What Is Love (Howard Jones)
22 talk (Phil Collins)
23 I Missed Again (Phil Collins)
24 You Can't Hurry Love (Phil Collins)
25 talk (Phil Collins & Joe Cocker)
26 The Letter (Joe Cocker)
27 talk (Eric Clapton)
28 Behind the Mask (Eric Clapton)
29 Cocaine (Eric Clapton)
30 talk (Eric Clapton & Mark Knopfler)
31 Money for Nothing (Mark Knopfler)
32 talk (Elton John)
33 I Don't Wanna Go On with You like That (Elton John)
34 Layla (Eric Clapton)
35 With a Little Help from My Friends (Joe Cocker)

Just like previous years, there was a group photo taken of the performers. Here are all their names.
Back row: Rick Astley, Howard Jones, Peter Gabriel, Joe Cocker, Phil Collins, Midge Ure
Middle row: Mark Knopfler, Brian May, Elton John, Eric Clapton
Front row: The Bee Gees, Robin, Barry and Maurice Gibb

Monday, March 25, 2024

World Party - Park West, Chicago, IL, 8-22-2006

For all intents and purposes, the British band World Party was Karl Wallinger. Not only did he write all the band's songs and sing lead on all of them, he often produced the albums and played most of the other instruments on some of them. Sadly, he died earlier this month, on March 11, 2024, at the age of 66, due to a stroke. 

I didn't hear the news at first, but then I noticed a surge in World Party bootlegs at bootleg sharing sites, and I figured it out. A couple of years ago, I had a hard time finding even a single World Party bootleg. But in the wake of his death, a bunch were posted. I wanted to post something new to mark Wallinger's passing, so I looked at all the concerts I hadn't posted yet, and decided this was the best one. It came after most of his albums were released, so it serves as a de facto best of. He was backed by an excellent band, and gave a solid importance. But probably the most important factor of all is sound quality, and this is a fantastic soundboard. If you were to get just one live World Party recording, this would probably be the best one to choose.

Because this is a excellent soundboard boot, I didn't have to do much tinkering at all. But I did boost the volume of the vocals for the banter between songs, and sometimes I boosted the cheering after the songs.

This album is an hour and 28 minutes long.

01 talk (World Party)
02 Put the Message in the Box (World Party)
03 talk (World Party)
04 Is It like Today (World Party)
05 What Does It Mean Now (World Party)
06 talk (World Party)
07 When the Rainbow Comes (World Party)
08 talk (World Party)
09 Best Place I've Ever Been (World Party)
10 I Thought You Were a Spy (World Party)
11 talk (World Party)
12 She's the One (World Party)
13 Love Street (World Party)
14 talk (World Party)
15 Who Are You (World Party)
16 Here Comes the Future (World Party)
17 talk (World Party)
18 Vanity Fair (World Party)
19 Thank You World (World Party)
20 talk (World Party)
21 Sweet Soul Dream (World Party)
22 Is It Too Late (World Party)
23 talk (World Party)
24 Way Down Now (World Party)
25 It Is Time (World Party)
26 talk (World Party)
27 Ship of Fools (World Party)
28 talk (World Party)

The cover photo is of Wallinger at the Bonnaroo Festival in Memphis, Tennessee, in June 2006.

Saturday, March 23, 2024

Jamaica World Music Festival, Montego Bay, Jamaica, 11-27-1982, Part 6: Peter Tosh

The sixth and last act of the third day of the 1982 Jamaica World Music Festival was Peter Tosh. That makes this the last act of the entire festival too.

By 1982, Bob Marley was far and away the best known Jamaican musician in the world. I'm sure had he lived, the festival would have wanted him as the final act. Unfortunately, he died of cancer in 1981. So having Peter Tosh close the festival was probably thought of as the next big thing. For one, Tosh was in the Wailers from 1963 to 1974. During that time, he co-wrote and co-sang the classic song "Get Up, Stand Up," which he also performed here.

But also, he had a successful solo career after leaving the Wailers, including some success in the U.S. and other overseas countries. Unfortunately, his career would be cut short when he was killed by an armed gang robbing his house in 1987.

I made one very drastic cut to this. Track 94, a banter track, is only half a minute long. It had originally been 18 minutes long! Tosh, after not talking much at all between the other songs, gave a a very long monologue, mostly about his desire to see marijuana legalized. I have no problem with the topic. In fact, I'm in favor of legalization. But in my opinion, this monologue went on way, way too long, and it killed the momentum of his set. Furthermore, most of it is moot by now anyway, with marijuana becoming legal in more and more places (including the state I live in). In Jamaica, which is what mostly would have mattered to Tosh, it is mostly legal, but only in private or public dispensaries.

This album is an hour and 18 minutes long.

85 Steppin' Razor (Peter Tosh)
86 talk (Peter Tosh)
87 African (Peter Tosh)
88 Coming in Hot (Peter Tosh)
89 Not Gonna Give It Up (Peter Tosh)
90 Don't Look Back (Peter Tosh)
91 Rastafari Is (Peter Tosh)
92 I'm the Toughest (Peter Tosh)
93 Bush Doctor (Peter Tosh)
94 talk (Peter Tosh)
95 Get Up, Stand Up (Peter Tosh)
96 Want I (Peter Tosh)
97 Legalize It (Peter Tosh)

I couldn't find any good photos of Tosh at this festival, or even from 1982. So this one is from an unknown location in June 1981.

Jamaica World Music Festival, Montego Bay, Jamaica, 11-27-1982, Part 5: The Clash

The fifth act on the third day of the 1982 Jamaica World Music Festival was the Clash. There's just one more act after this one. 

It's somewhat risky for me to be posting this, because I posted this exact performance some months previously, only to have it banned due to a copyright violation. That really baffled me, because I believe everything on it is unreleased, and it can be found in many other bootleg sharing locations on the Internet without any apparent trouble.

Luckily, a musical associate who wants to stay unnamed is helping out. This person has a website where they've put the link for this. So you can go there and grab it. Hopefully that will put enough distance so this blog won't have trouble. It would be a real bummer posting everything else from this festival but this one set. So we'll see how it goes. Knock on wood. 

Like all the other albums I'm posting from this festival, I've adjusted the mix to bring up the lead vocals relative to the instruments, and I boosted the crowd noise after each song, which had been way too low.

By 1982, the Clash had gotten so big that they usually played large venues, even playing giant stadiums as an opening act for the Who. That resulted in poor sound quality in most cases, even on official recordings. So that makes this recording even more remarkable. Personally, I prefer this to their official live albums.

This album is an hour and one minute long.

64 talk (Clash)
65 London Calling (Clash)
66 Police on My Back (Clash)
67 talk (Clash)
68 The Guns of Brixton (Clash)
69 The Magnificent Seven - Armagideon Time (Clash)
70 Junco Partner (Clash)
71 talk (Clash)
72 Spanish Bombs (Clash)
73 One More Time (Clash)
74 Train in Vain (Clash)
75 Bankrobber (Clash)
76 This Is Radio Clash (Clash)
77 talk (Clash)
78 Clampdown (Clash)
79 Should I Stay or Should I Go (Clash)
80 talk (Clash)
81 Rock the Casbah (Clash)
82 talk (Clash)
83 Straight to Hell (Clash)
84 I Fought the Law (Clash)

The download link can be found in the comments.

I'm happy to say this cover photo is from this exact concert. The only one I could find was black and white. But I used the free Palette program to colorize them. I only made one little adjustment in Photoshop, to get the bandana in the back pocket completely red.

Thursday, March 21, 2024

Jamaica World Music Festival, Montego Bay, Jamaica, 11-27-1982, Part 4: Squeeze

The second act on the third day of the 1982 Jamaica World Music Festival was the British band Squeeze.

Probably the most noteworthy aspect of this performance is that it was the very last concert given by the original version of Squeeze. The band had been formed back in 1974, and had put out albums from 1977 to 1982. But their 1982 album "Sweets from a Stranger" was not well received critically or commercially, although I personally think it's a solid album. That, on top of other problems led to the break-up.

Lead singer Glenn Tilbrook later commented, "The band was not in a happy place on the year from 'East Side Story' to 'Sweets from a Stranger.' There were some great songs on 'Sweets from a Stranger,' but the band itself did not feel great; there was dark cloud above us. It was just hard work being on the road then, and it was an odd time. Really, when you're having that sort of success, no manager is going to say, 'You need to stop for a while.' And no one did, so we had to."

As it so happened, the band reunited for a one-off charity concert in 1985, and had such a good time that they decided to stay together. The band continued all the way until 1999, and there have been more reunions since then. But I think they lost a lot of career momentum with their original break-up.

Anyway, there's no sign that this was a final concert to my ears. They didn't give any good-bye announcement to the crowd. Most importantly, it was a good performance, and they seemed to be having fun. They also played some interesting covers that never appeared on any of their studio albums: "Tracks of My Tears," "I Heard It through the Grapevine," and "Time Is Tight."

This album is 52 minutes long.

45 talk (Squeeze)
46 Another Nail in My Heart (Squeeze)
47 In Quintessence (Squeeze)
48 Cool for Cats (Squeeze)
49 talk (Squeeze)
50 Annie Get Your Gun (Squeeze)
51 Black Coffee In Bed (Squeeze)
52 Take Me, I'm Yours (Squeeze)
53 Out of Touch (Squeeze)
54 I Can't Hold On (Squeeze)
55 Tracks of My Tears (Squeeze)
56 talk (Squeeze)
57 Is That Love (Squeeze)
58 Tempted (Squeeze)
59 Pulling Mussels [From the Shell] (Squeeze)
60 talk (Squeeze)
61 I Heard It through the Grapevine (Squeeze)
62 Time Is Tight [Instrumental] (Squeeze)
63 Messed Around (Squeeze)

I couldn't find any good photos of the band from the festival. I had trouble finding any good photos of the band in concert from that year at all. My search was made harder because I wanted a photo of the band at night, since their set definitely took place at night. I ultimately used just a photo of lead singer Glenn Tilbrook, taken some time in 1981.

Wednesday, March 20, 2024

Jamaica World Music Festival, Montego Bay, Jamaica, 11-27-1982, Part 3: Rick James

The third act on the third day of the 1982 Jamaica World Music Festival was funk star Rick James.

I've previously marveled at what a diverse line-up this festival had, and Rick James is another example. It's hard to imagine any other festival that had 1960s country star Skeeter Davis and funkster Rick James on the same bill! 

Cocaine is a hell of a drug. Rick James, who died in 2004 at the age of 56, had a wild roller coaster of a music career. There really should be a movie about his life, because he lived the stereotypical life of an out of control music star, with the sex and drugs in particular dialed up to 11. James later said, "I could have brought Monte Carlo as much as I’ve snorted. ... I [went through] five yachts, three planes, 17 cars, four mansions, any [woman] that I wanted, and had $30 million in the bank. People were disgusted with the way I lived. Let’s talk real. I was a dumb motherf*cker."

After many, many years trying to get famous (including being in a band with Neil Young in the 1960s called the Mynah Birds, believe it or not), he finally hit the big time in the late 1970s. 1981 was probably his biggest year, with the album "Street Songs," which sold four million copies worldwide, and the hit song "Super Freak." But his 1982 album "Throwin' Down" was very successful too. 

Unfortunately, by 1982, James discovered crack cocaine. He'd been using drugs, even heroin, since he was an young teenager, but crack was so powerful that he slowly lost his considerable musical abilities. His life spiraled down and down to what he later called "the lowest level of hell," including years in prison.

However, even though he had to be using crack at the time of this concert, he was still very functional, and put on a solid performance.

This album is an hour and 29 minutes long.

29 talk (Rick James)
30 Ghetto Life (Rick James)
31 talk (Rick James)
32 Standing on the Top (Rick James)
33 Love Gun (Rick James)
34 Instrumental - Star Spangled Banner (Rick James)
35 Fire and Desire (Rick James)
36 Hard to Get (Rick James)
37 Mary Jane (Rick James)
38 You and I (Rick James)
39 Give It to Me Baby (Rick James)
40 Super Freak (Rick James)
41 Instrumental (Rick James)
42 talk (Rick James)
43 There's a Party Going On (Rick James)
44 Dance wit' Me (Rick James)

The cover photo comes from this exact concert.

Jamaica World Music Festival, Montego Bay, Jamaica, 11-27-1982, Part 2: Joe Jackson

The second act on the third day of the 1982 Jamaica World Music Festival was Joe Jackson.

In June 1982, Jackson released the studio album "Night and Day." It turned out to be the most commercially successful album of his long music career. So he was probably at the height of his popularity when he performed at this festival.

Not surprisingly, he played songs from his latest album: "Steppin' Out," "Another World," and "A Slow Song." There's some other key songs of his that he apparently didn't play, including from that album. That makes me wonder if this in fact is the full set. I do know some of the other sets from the festival were missing songs, but I haven't seen any definitive setlists from the festival, so I don't know if this is complete or not.

As an aside, I wanted to post a 1982 BBC album from him, but I wasn't able to do the copyright violation issues. (Another album I posted from the exact same source was banned.) This is a fairly good substitute, since it's another 1982 concert with excellent sound quality.

This album is 45 minutes long.

17 talk (Joe Jackson)
18 On Your Radio (Joe Jackson)
19 Another World (Joe Jackson)
20 Sunday Papers (Joe Jackson)
21 Look Sharp (Joe Jackson)
22 Steppin' Out (Joe Jackson)
23 Got the Time (Joe Jackson)
24 talk (Joe Jackson)
25 A Slow Song (Joe Jackson)
26 talk (Joe Jackson)
27 I'm the Man (Joe Jackson)
28 talk (Joe Jackson)

I couldn't find any good photos of Jackson at this festival. So instead I'm using a photo of him at the Aragon Ballroom in Chicago, Illinois, on September 24, 1982.

Jamaica World Music Festival, Montego Bay, Jamaica, 11-27-1982, Part 1: Bobby and the Midnites

The first act of the third and final day of the 1982 Jamaica World Music Festival was Bobby and the Midnites. This was a short-lived solo project by Bob Weir, one of the two main singer-songwriters in the Grateful Dead.

I have to confess I'm not terribly impressed with Bobby and the Midnites. I think Bob Weir has have an excellent music career. But pretty much all of his good songs were used by the Grateful Dead, including the songs from his first solo album, 1972's "Ace." His later solo albums generally weren't that memorable. There were two Bobby and the Midnites albums, one in 1981 (simply titled "Bobby and the Midnites") and the other in 1984. Naturally, with this concert taking place in 1982, it largely drew on the 1981 album, although two songs performed here, "Rock in the '80's" and "Thunder and Lightning," eventually ended up on the second album.

Weir decided that his solo project would play no original songs also played by the Grateful Dead, so virtually all of his best original songs were excluded. (Although the cover "Man Smart, Women Smarter," performed here, was often played by the Dead, including in their set at this very festival.) So he was left with a fairly weak bunch of original songs. But that was partially made up by a lively performance, as well as some classic covers, such as "Young Blood," "Easy to Slip," "Bahama Mama," and "Book of Rules."

This album is an hour and 17 minutes long.

01 talk (Bobby & the Midnites)
02 [I Want To] Fly Away (Bobby & the Midnites)
03 Festival (Bobby & the Midnites)
04 Young Blood (Bobby & the Midnites)
05 Easy to Slip (Bobby & the Midnites)
06 Bahama Mama [Instrumental] (Bobby & the Midnites)
07 Rock in the '80's (Bobby & the Midnites)
08 Little Junkie Girl (Bobby & the Midnites)
09 Jah Laughs (Bobby & the Midnites)
10 Man Smart, Women Smarter (Bobby & the Midnites)
11 Heaven Help the Fool (Bobby & the Midnites)
12 Drums [Instrumental] (Bobby & the Midnites)
13 Josephine (Bobby & the Midnites)
14 Thunder and Lightning (Bobby & the Midnites)
15 talk (Bobby & the Midnites)
16 Book of Rules (Bobby & the Midnites)

The cover photo of Bob Weir comes from this exact festival, but I manipulated it a lot. The original photo was a black and white one of Weir standing with Jimmy Cliff backstage at the festival. I blackened everything else but Weir, and then colorized it using the Palette program. It was the only decent photo of him from the festival I could find.

Tuesday, March 19, 2024

Jamaica World Music Festival, Montego Bay, Jamaica, 11-26-1982, Part 6: The Beach Boys

The sixth and final set from the second day of the 1982 Jamaica World Music Festival was the Beach Boys. Keep in mind there's one more day of the festival after this, with another six musical acts.

The Beach Boys were great for most of the 1960s and 1970s, but by 1982, they were definitely in musical decline. One reason was the loss of Dennis Wilson, who was not only the band's drummer but also a key songwriter and lead vocalist. He had a lot of personal demons, and tried to fight them with an increasing level of drug abuse. He died in December 1983 by drowning, after blacking out in the ocean from drinking. But if he hadn't died then, he probably would have died soon thereafter, because he was on a downward spiral. Wikipedia's entry on him notes, "By the last year of his life, he had virtually lost his normal speaking voice, struggled to sing, and had forgotten how to play drums, often missing Beach Boys performances in the process." 

So given all that, I was surprised that not only was Dennis Wilson the drummer for this entire concert (he got mentioned by name a couple of times during the banter), but he certainly did a good job on drums. However, it's noteworthy that he didn't sing lead vocals on any songs, as far as I can tell. With his involvement here, I consider this possibly the last good recording of the "real," full Beach Boys. (True, Brian Wilson wasn't at this concert, but he rarely took part in their concerts.) Other band members would die or leave later, so even though the Beach Boys are still technically going as I write this in 2024, the band is but a shadow of its former self.

In the early 1980s, Dennis Wilson was far from the only band member having troubles, especially with drugs. They had effectively become an oldies act by this point. But, as an oldies act, they were firing on all cylinders in this concert, with a dizzying number of classic songs to perform. They managed to cram in a ton of them because they did a lot of partial versions in medleys.

Note, by the way, that this performance must have taken place very late at night. The night before, the Grateful Dead was the last act, and they didn't get on stage until about four in the morning. I'm sure it was similar with the Beach Boys. They made some passing references to how late it was in the banter between songs.

This album is an hour and 13 minutes long.

087 talk (Beach Boys)
088 California Girls (Beach Boys)
089 I Can Hear Music (Beach Boys)
090 Sloop John B (Beach Boys)
091 Darlin' (Beach Boys)
092 Dance, Dance, Dance (Beach Boys)
093 Wouldn't It Be Nice (Beach Boys)
094 talk (Beach Boys)
095 In My Room (Beach Boys)
096 Do It Again (Beach Boys)
097 talk (Beach Boys)
098 409 (Beach Boys)
099 Shut You Down (Beach Boys)
100 The Little Old Lady from Pasadena (Beach Boys)
101 Little Deuce Coupe (Beach Boys)
102 I Get Around (Beach Boys)
103 talk (Beach Boys)
104 Runaway (Beach Boys)
105 talk (Beach Boys)
106 God Only Knows (Beach Boys)
107 Come Go with Me (Beach Boys)
108 talk (Beach Boys)
109 Be True to Your School (Beach Boys)
110 talk (Beach Boys)
111 Surfer Girl (Beach Boys)
112 talk (Beach Boys)
113 All Summer Long (Beach Boys)
114 Help Me, Rhonda (Beach Boys)
115 talk (Beach Boys)
116 Rockin' All Over the World (Beach Boys)
117 Rock and Roll Music (Beach Boys)
118 talk (Beach Boys)
119 Surfin' Safari (Beach Boys)
120 Surf City (Beach Boys)
121 Surfin' U.S.A. (Beach Boys)
122 talk (Beach Boys)
123 Good Vibrations (Beach Boys)
124 Barbara Ann (Beach Boys)
125 Fun, Fun, Fun (Beach Boys)
126 talk (Beach Boys)

The cover photo comes from this exact festival, though it probably was taken backstage. It only shows Carl Wilson, the band's lead guitarist and one of the key lead singers. By chance, this was the only good photo of anyone from the band, so I decided to use it, even though all the other band members are left out. The original was in black and white, but I colorized it with the help of the Palette program.

Jamaica World Music Festival, Montego Bay, Jamaica, 11-26-1982, Part 5: Skeeter Davis

The fifth act of the second day of the three-day long 1982 Jamaica World Music Festival was country singer Skeeter Davis.

If you may recall, when I posted the first album from this festival, I included a quote from funk star Rick James, who played in the festival, and said, "This is one of the weirdest, strangest, fuckin' combinations of groups ever!" The presence of someone like Skeeter Davis has to be part of what he was talking about. 

Davis had many country hits. However, she's mainly known for the classic song "The End of the World." It reached Number Two on the U.S. singles chart in 1962. Billboard Magazine ranked it as the second best selling single of that year.

However, her star had faded a lot by the year of this concert. Her last country hit was in 1976. At the time of this concert, she was over 50 years old, making her the oldest star in the festival by a good margin. Her inclusion in the festival was so odd that even she commented on it in her banter between songs. But it seems her music had done surprisingly well in Jamaica, especially "The End of the World," of course.

I give kudos to the festival organizers for their musical diversity - having Davis directly follow Black Uhuru is quite a musical leap! But if you're not into country music you might want to skip this, since it's country all the way. But if you like country, Davis put on a strong performance, with lots of interesting banter between songs.

Here's her Wikipedia entry, if you want to know more:

Skeeter Davis - Wikipedia

This album is 47 minutes long.

61 Silver Threads and Golden Needles (Skeeter Davis)
62 talk (Skeeter Davis)
63 Am I That Easy to Forget (Skeeter Davis)
64 talk (Skeeter Davis)
65 My Last Date (Skeeter Davis)
66 talk (Skeeter Davis)
67 Blue Kentucky Girl (Skeeter Davis)
68 talk (Skeeter Davis)
69 The Rockabye Boogie (Skeeter Davis)
70 talk (Skeeter Davis)
71 It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels (Skeeter Davis)
72 talk (Skeeter Davis)
73 I'll Fly Away (Skeeter Davis)
74 talk (Skeeter Davis)
75 One Tin Soldier (Skeeter Davis)
76 talk (Skeeter Davis)
77 Everybody Wants a Cowboy (Skeeter Davis)
78 talk (Skeeter Davis)
79 I Gotta Know (Skeeter Davis)
80 talk (Skeeter Davis)
81 Rocky Top (Skeeter Davis)
82 talk (Skeeter Davis)
83 The End of the World (Skeeter Davis)
84 talk (Skeeter Davis)
85 The Rose (Skeeter Davis)
86 talk (Skeeter Davis)

The cover photo comes from this exact concert. However, I cheated a bit, because it's actually a backstage shot of her talking to Rick James, of all people! I cropped it and blacked out everything so it would only show Davis. I also colorized it with the help of the Palette program, since the original was in black in white. I kind of felt obliged to resort to such tactics, because otherwise I couldn't find any photos of her whatsoever from around this time period.

Jamaica World Music Festival, Montego Bay, Jamaica, 11-26-1982, Part 4: Black Uhuru

The fourth act on the second day of the 1982 Jamaica World Music Festival was the Jamaican reggae band Black Uhuru.

Black Uhuru is one of the most critically acclaimed reggae bands, though they don't have the same pop crossover as, say, Jimmy Cliff. It was lucky this concert happened the year it did, because the band was probably at their musical peak. Their 1981 album "Red" is considered a classic in the genre. Rolling Stone Magazine rated it Number 23 in their list of the Top 100 Albums of the 1980s. Their next album, 1982's "Chill Out," is also considered one of their best. However, in 1984 they lost a key member, Michael Rose, who left for a solo career. After that, they had a change of musical direction and lost more members. So their peak is generally considered the early 1980s.

Here's their Wikipedia entry, if you want to know more:

Black Uhuru - Wikipedia

This album is an hour and 22 minutes long.

49 talk (Black Uhuru)
50 Shine Eye Gal - Plastic Smile (Black Uhuru)
51 I Love King Sellassie (Black Uhuru)
52 Chill Out (Black Uhuru)
53 Darkness (Black Uhuru)
54 Guess Who's Coming to Dinner (Black Uhuru)
55 Abortion - General Penitentiary (Black Uhuru)
56 Happiness - Whole World Is Africa (Black Uhuru)
57 Sinsemilla (Black Uhuru)
58 talk (Black Uhuru)
59 Spongi Reggae (Black Uhuru)
60 Mondays (Black Uhuru)

I couldn't find any photos of the band at this concert, or any good ones from any 1982 concerts. So I went with a promo photo from that year.

Jamaica World Music Festival, Montego Bay, Jamaica, 11-26-1982, Part 3: Aretha Franklin

The third set from the second day of the 1982 Jamaica World Music Festival is a performance by soul music legend Aretha Franklin.

I'd guess this set is one of the most popular bootlegs from this festival, and for good reason. There aren't that many Aretha Franklin bootlegs with excellent sound, and this definitely has excellent sound, just like the rest of the festival. (And keep in mind I've remixed all the songs from all the acts, so this version sounds better than ever before.) This is the only worthy concert recording of hers that I know of from the early 1980s.

Franklin's golden years were the late 1960s and early 1970s. She had a pretty rough late 1970s, with disco not suiting her. But she had a career rebound in the 1980s. That rebound really began this year, 1982, with the hit "Jump to It," which reached Number One on the U.S. R&B chart. Her 1982 album was also titled "Jump to It." Two other songs here come from that, "It's Your Thing" and "I Wanna Make It Up to You," but note that "It's Your Thing" is an early 1970s soul classic by the Isley Brothers. "Love Me Forever" and "Hold On, I'm Coming" are from her previous two albums at the time (though note "Hold On, I'm Coming" is the 1960s Sam and Dave soul classic). All the other songs are from her late 1960s/ early 1970s heyday.

This album is 59 minutes long.

33 talk (Aretha Franklin)
34 Hold On, I'm Coming (Aretha Franklin)
35 Love Me Forever (Aretha Franklin)
36 talk (Aretha Franklin)
37 It's Your Thing (Aretha Franklin)
38 I Wanna Make It Up to You (Aretha Franklin)
39 Daydreaming (Aretha Franklin)
40 Rock Steady (Aretha Franklin)
41 I Say a Little Prayer (Aretha Franklin)
42 Respect (Aretha Franklin)
43 Baby, Baby, Baby (Aretha Franklin)
44 Ain't No Way (Aretha Franklin)
45 talk (Aretha Franklin)
46 A Brand New Me (Aretha Franklin)
47 Jump to It (Aretha Franklin)
48 talk (Aretha Franklin)

The cover photo is from this exact concert.

Jamaica World Music Festival, Montego Bay, Jamaica, 11-26-1982, Part 2: Stacy Lattisaw

The second set from the second day of the 1982 Jamaica World Music Festival is a performance by soul singer Stacy Lattisaw.

I have to admit that, prior to putting the albums together from this festival, I'd never heard of Lattisaw. But she had a fairly successful music career in the 1980s, with several Top 40 hits in the U.S. None of them were big hits, but she had a Top Five hit in Britain in 1980 with the song "Jump to the Beat." Oddly, that song isn't included here. It's possible though that parts of her set are missing. Perhaps the reason I'd never heard of her is that her career was cut short. She retired from soul music in 1990 to raise her family. She's only done occasional gospel music since.

Maybe the most surprising thing about her music career was just how young she was when she first got famous. She put out her first album in 1979 at the age of 12! Her big hit in Britain mentioned above came one year after that. By the time of this concert, she was still only about 15 years old.

If you want to know more about her, here's here Wikipedia page:

Stacy Lattisaw - Wikipedia

This isn't really my kind of music, but she certainly sounds musically talented and not just a teenage novelty. Note that three of the songs are classics from the 1960s: "Hey There Lonely Boy" (originally "Hey There Lonely Girl"), "Love on a Two-Way Street," and "Attack of the Name Game," which is a modified version of "The Name Game."

This album is 43 minutes long.

21 talk (Stacy Lattisaw)
22 Dynamite (Stacy Lattisaw)
23 Spotlight (Stacy Lattisaw)
24 Let Me Be Your Angel (Stacy Lattisaw)
25 talk (Stacy Lattisaw)
26 Hey There Lonely Boy [Hey There Lonely Girl] (Stacy Lattisaw)
27 Attack of the Name Game (Stacy Lattisaw)
28 talk (Stacy Lattisaw)
29 Don't Throw It All Away (Stacy Lattisaw)
30 Love on a Two-Way Street (Stacy Lattisaw)
31 Sneakin' Out (Stacy Lattisaw)
32 talk (Stacy Lattisaw)

The cover photo is from this exact concert.

Jamaica World Music Festival, Montego Bay, Jamaica, 11-26-1982, Part 1: The English Beat

This is the first act of the second day of the three-day long 1982 Jamaica World Music Festival. This time, it's the English Beat.

The English Beat only stayed together long enough for three studio albums. They had just released the third one, "Special Beat Service," a couple of months prior to this concert. So, naturally, they played a lot of songs from that.

I believe this is the shortest set of the entire festival. It's possible there are other songs that didn't get recorded. Or it could just be a short and sweet set, I don't know.

I already posted a 1982 concert from the band, a BBC one. It's pretty similar, so I suppose this isn't that necessary. But of course I'm including it since it's part of the festival.

This album is 41 minutes long.

Note that I've restarted the song numbering from one, and the part number of the album goes back to one, because this is the first set of the second day. I'll do the same with the start of the third day.

01 talk (English Beat)
02 Hands Off... She's Mine (English Beat)
03 Big Shot (English Beat)
04 talk (English Beat)
05 Doors of Your Heart (English Beat)
06 talk (English Beat)
07 Save It for Later (English Beat)
08 talk (English Beat)
09 Too Nice to Talk To (English Beat)
10 talk (English Beat)
11 I Confess (English Beat)
12 talk (English Beat)
13 Spar wid Me (English Beat)
14 Ranking Full Stop (English Beat)
15 Mirror in the Bathroom (English Beat)
16 talk (English Beat)
17 Jackpot (English Beat)
18 talk (English Beat)
19 The Tears of a Clown (English Beat)
20 talk (English Beat)

The cover photo is from this exact concert. However, there's a twist, because it's actually two photos put together. On the left, with guitar, is Dave Wakeling, and the right is Ranking Roger. I started with a picture that had both of them standing in these exact positions, but Wakeling didn't look good. I happened to have another photo from the concert of just him, probably taken just moments before or after the other photo, judging from the lighting and such. So I took out Wakeling from the original and replaced him with the one from the other photo.

Monday, March 18, 2024

Jamaica World Music Festival, Montego Bay, Jamaica, 11-25-1982, Part 5: The Grateful Dead

The fifth and final set from the first day of the 1982 Jamaica World Music Festival was performed by the Grateful Dead. But don't worry, there are two other days to the festival after this.

Actually, it would be more accurate to say this took place on November 26th instead of the 25th, because the band started playing after midnight... well after midnight! The festivals started at 7 P.M. each "day" of the festival, so it was probably dark by the time the first acts got on stage. But then there were delays common to such festivals. Apparently, by the time the Grateful Dead took the stage, it was about four in the morning!

The Dead played one of their typical sets, going for about two hours. However, it seems to me that they were inspired by the Jamaica festival setting to play more of their upbeat songs than usual, including some that came close to having a reggae sound.

One interesting note is that the song "Throwing Stones" played here hadn't been released on album yet, and in fact wouldn't be released until five years later, on the band's 1987 studio album "In the Dark." They had just started playing it in concert a couple of months earlier.

This album is an hour and 55 minutes long.

65 talk (Grateful Dead)
66 Sugaree (Grateful Dead)
67 New Minglewood Blues (Grateful Dead)
68 Loser (Grateful Dead)
69 Man Smart, Woman Smarter (Grateful Dead)
70 Althea (Grateful Dead)
71 Let It Grow (Grateful Dead)
72 talk (Grateful Dead)
73 Samson and Delilah (Grateful Dead)
74 Scarlet Begonias (Grateful Dead)
75 Fire on the Mountain (Grateful Dead)
76 Drums [Instrumental] (Grateful Dead)
77 Space [Instrumental] (Grateful Dead)
78 Throwing Stones (Grateful Dead)
79 Not Fade Away (Grateful Dead)
80 Black Peter (Grateful Dead)
81 Good Lovin' (Grateful Dead)

The cover photo is from this exact concert. However, the original was in black and white. I used the Palette program to help convert it into color. From right to left, that's Phil Lesh, Bob Weir, and Jerry Garcia. The three other band members weren't in the photo.

Jamaica World Music Festival, Montego Bay, Jamaica, 11-25-1982, Part 4: Jimmy Cliff

The fourth set on the first day of the 1982 Jamaica World Music Festival was performed by reggae star Jimmy Cliff.

Cliff is one of my favorite reggae artists, and probably one of those with appeal outside of the reggae world. I've been meaning to post a live album from him for ages, so it's a good thing that this festival forced me to do so.

Much like the Toots and the Maytals set earlier on the same day, it's a bit frustrating to me that some really key songs weren't played, such as "Sitting in Limbo," "Wonderful World, Beautiful People," and "You Can Get It If You Really Want." But he was really keen to play his newest music. He put out the album "Special" earlier in 1982. He played no less than eight of the twelve songs from that album, plus a couple more from his 1981 album.

This album is an hour and 26 minutes long.

44 Originator (Jimmy Cliff)
45 talk (Jimmy Cliff)
46 Give the People What They Want (Jimmy Cliff)
47 Let's Turn the Tables - African Chant (Jimmy Cliff)
48 talk (Jimmy Cliff)
49 Roots Radical (Jimmy Cliff)
50 talk (Jimmy Cliff)
51 Treat the Youths Right (Jimmy Cliff)
52 Rock Children (Jimmy Cliff)
53 talk (Jimmy Cliff)
54 Music Maker (Jimmy Cliff)
55 Many Rivers to Cross (Jimmy Cliff)
56 talk (Jimmy Cliff)
57 Special (Jimmy Cliff)
58 talk (Jimmy Cliff)
59 Love Is All (Jimmy Cliff)
60 talk (Jimmy Cliff)
61 Peace Officer (Jimmy Cliff)
62 The Harder They Come (Jimmy Cliff)
63 talk (Jimmy Cliff)
64 Rub-a-Dub Partner (Jimmy Cliff)

The cover photo of Cliff comes from this exact concert.

Jamaica World Music Festival, Montego Bay, Jamaica, 11-25-1982, Part 3: Gladys Knight & the Pips

The third act from the first night of the 1982 Jamaica World Music Festival was Gladys Knight and the Pips.

This classic soul act has tons of hits in the late 1960s and early 1970s. But at the time of this concert, their last significant hit had been in 1975. Their most recent album, "Touch," had been released in 1981, and was run of the mill. Fortunately in my opinion, they only played a couple songs from their most recent albums ("Reach High," "Taste of Bitter Love," and "I Will Fight"), and instead concentrated on their earlier classics.

Like all the other albums I've posting from this festival, everything here is officially unreleased, but the sound quality is excellent. And I boosted the lead vocals relative to the instruments to further improve the sound quality.

This album is 44 minutes long.

27 talk (Gladys Knight & the Pips)
28 Reach High (Gladys Knight & the Pips)
29 Taste of Bitter Love (Gladys Knight & the Pips)
30 talk (Gladys Knight & the Pips)
31 Neither One of Us [Wants to Be the First to Say Goodbye] (Gladys Knight & the Pips)
32 talk (Gladys Knight & the Pips)
33 I Will Fight (Gladys Knight & the Pips)
34 talk (Gladys Knight & the Pips)
35 Best Thing that Ever Happened to Me (Gladys Knight & the Pips)
36 talk (Gladys Knight & the Pips)
37 Every Beat of My Heart - Friendship Train (Gladys Knight & the Pips)
38 If I Were Your Woman - Daddy Could Swear, I Declare (Gladys Knight & the Pips)
39 Midnight Train to Georgia (Gladys Knight & the Pips)
40 talk (Gladys Knight & the Pips)
41 The Way We Were (Gladys Knight & the Pips)
42 Band Introductions (Gladys Knight & the Pips)
43 I Heard It Through the Grapevine (Gladys Knight & the Pips)

The cover photo is from this exact festival. However, it appears to be from a backstage interview. Also, while Gladys Knight is in the middle, only two of the three members of her backing band, the Pips, are shown with her.

Sunday, March 17, 2024

Jamaica World Music Festival, Montego Bay, Jamaica, 11-25-1982, Part 2: The B-52's

The second act of the first night of the Jamaica World Music Festival was the B-52's. 

I've already posted a B-52's concert from 1982, which took place at the first US Festival. This is very similar, since it took place only two months later and the band's set lists didn't change much. But I'm including it for completeness's sake.

The bootleg recording generally has excellent sound quality. However, only the second half of the first song, "Party Out of Bounds," was included.So it's very possible that they played one or more songs before that that didn't get recorded at all. If anyone knows, please let me know. I found a different version from 1982 with similar sound quality and used that to fill in the missing part. That's why that one song has "[Edit]" in its title.

As I mentioned with the previous album in this series, I've remixed all the songs from all the sets in the festival (using the UVR5 audio editing program). That was the case here too. I'm probably not going to mention that with all the subsequent albums I'll be posting from the festival, 'cos I'll just be repeating myself. But keep in mind that the sound quality of these versions should be better than all previous bootleg versions, due to my remixing.

Also, you may note that the song numbering below begins with 10 instead of 1. That's because the song count continues from the previous album in the series, since it was all one concert. However, the concert took place over three days, so the renumbering restarts with each new day. Similarly, the titles change, for instance going from Part 5 of the November 25th concert back to Part 1 of the November 26th concert, and so on.

This album is 45 minutes long.

10 Party Out of Bounds [Edit] (B-52s)
11 Give Me Back My Man (B-52s)
12 talk (B-52s)
13 Planet Claire (B-52s)
14 talk (B-52s)
15 Throw that Beat in the Garbage Can (B-52s)
16 talk (B-52s)
17 Lava (B-52s)
18 talk (B-52s)
19 Mesopotamia (B-52s)
20 6060-842 (B-52s)
21 talk (B-52s)
22 52 Girls (B-52s)
23 Dance This Mess Around (B-52s)
24 talk (B-52s)
25 Rock Lobster (B-52s)
26 Private Idaho (B-52s)

The cover photo comes from this exact concert. However, it appears to be from an interview that took place backstage rather than from their actual performance on stage.

Jamaica World Music Festival, Montego Bay, Jamaica, 11-25-1982, Part 1: Toots & the Maytals

It's time for me to post another big rock festival. This is a particularly big one - 18 hours of music! The 1982 Jamaica World Music Festival is fairly unique when it comes to such festivals, due to the sheer diversity of the musical acts involved. Funk star Rick James, who played at the festival, commented during his set, "This is one of the weirdest, strangest, fuckin' combinations of groups ever!" But he also called it "One of the greatest festivals ever in the world."

I couldn't find out a whole lot about the festival, as it mostly seems to have been forgotten. But it was meant to be the first of an annual tradition. It was timed to take place near Christmas, so people from other countries, especially the United States, could come to Jamaica to attend and generally have a vacation while they were there (and hopefully spend a lot of money and help the economy). However, apparently it wasn't planned sufficiently in advance, and many people who wanted to attend were unable to, due to the fact that the plane flights were all full. As a result, attendance was below expectations. Somewhere between 20,000 and 50,000 people attended, with the numbers rising and falling over the course of three evenings of concerts. Because ticket sales were disappointing, it was written off as a failed experiment and never repeated.

But what matters for us the most is that virtually the whole festival was professionally recorded and somehow leaked to the public as bootlegs. Only a few of the acts aren't included here: Rita Marley, the Wailers, Yellowman, and Ronnie Milsap. I purposely didn't include Rita Marley and the Wailers, because in my opinion they were very poor substitutes for having Bob Marley there. Marley died of cancer the year before, and having his wife Rita and/or only his backing band doesn't cut it for me, because they didn't really have successful musical careers out of his shadow. I couldn't find the Yellowman and Ronnie Milsap sets. Furthermore, Jimmy Buffett was on the bill and was supposed to play, but he cancelled for some reason.

That still leaves 17 albums I'll be posting, one album for each of the musical acts over the three days of the festival. None of it has been officially released as far as I know, but all of it has excellent sound quality. I'd rather the names of the acts be surprises as I post them, but suffice to say there were a lot of great acts from rock, pop, soul, reggae, and even country. Due to the festival taking place in Jamaica, the home of reggae music, there was a particular large reggae representation compared to most festivals like this.

That brings me to this particular set, the first one of the first night of the concert. Toots and the Maytals are one of the greatest reggae acts of all time, in my opinion. Unfortunately, they didn't play some of their best known songs, such as "Funky Kingston," "Monkey Man," "Sweet and Dandy," and so on, and "Get Up, Stand Up" is not the Bob Marley and the Wailers classic, but an original with the same name. Still, it's a fine set just the same. (It's also possible that this isn't the complete set, I'm not sure, but the beginning of the next act's set wasn't recorded.)

On a different note, I should mention that I felt obliged to remix not only every single song in this album, but every single song from the entire festival! That's because while the bootleg recordings are all soundboards, it looks like nobody ever bothered to mix them. The main problem was that the vocals were significantly quieter than the instruments in all the songs. 

Also, the audience was very quiet for the entire festival, a common side effect of soundboard recordings that capture what's happening on the stage but only get crowd noise by accident. So I also carefully boosted the volume of the cheering after each and every song in the entire festival. So even if you've had some or all of the sets from this festival, these versions I'll be posting sound better than any prior known version, in my opinion.

This album is 46 minutes long.

01 Pressure Drop (Toots & the Maytals)
02 Get Up, Stand Up (Toots & the Maytals)
03 Beautiful Woman (Toots & the Maytals)
04 Never Get Weary Yet (Toots & the Maytals)
05 Going Away (Toots & the Maytals)
06 All the Time (Toots & the Maytals)
07 You Don't Know (Toots & the Maytals)
08 Reggae Got Soul (Toots & the Maytals)
09 talk (Toots & the Maytals)

I was able to find cover photos from the festival for most of the acts, but unfortunately not for this one. One fact I know about the festival is that the concerts didn't start until 7 P.M. each night. So I found a photo of the band's lead singer Toots Hibbert in the dark, since I figure the different sets generally took place in the dark. This cover photo is from a concert in Chicago in April 1982.

As far as the text goes, I used the same font used on some of the promotional materials for the festival. I also used some of the same colors. I'm sure it's not a coincidence that those colors - green, red, and yellow - are closely associated with reggae music.

Saturday, March 16, 2024

Natalie Merchant - Cover Songs, Volume 3: 2007-2019

This is the third and last album of cover versions by Natalie Merchant, former lead singer of 10,000 Maniacs. I really enjoyed the music here, she has a very interesting and enjoying voice.

This album takes us as close to the current day as I could get. Although it ends in 2019, I didn't find any worthy covers from the next few years. (She has done some in her latest concert tour, but sound quality is an issue.) 

As Merchant's solo career went on, she got increasingly interested in older, more traditional music forms. For instance, in 2003, she released the album "The House Carpenter's Daughter," with entirely consisted of cover songs, the vast majority of them traditional, with the composer or composers unknown. Her next album, "Leave Your Sleep" in 2010, consisted entirely of poetry from the 19th and 20th centuries put to music. I should mention I haven't included any cover songs from albums such as these, just her non-album stuff.

Given all that, it's not surprising that some of her non-album covers are traditional too. Indeed, that's the case with five of the songs here. But she mixes that with a good number of better known songs from the 1960s to more current times.

Only two of the songs here are unreleased. There would have been more, but again I wanted to keep the sound quality standard high. The two happen to both be Beatles covers: "Let It Be" and "I'm Only Sleeping." They're both from concert bootlegs.

As for the rest, most are from a mix of appearances on other artists' albums, various artists compilations, and two songs from an E.P. Additionally, four of the songs (tracks 11 to 14) are from her 2017 album "Rarities (1998-2017)." They were probably recorded at unknown earlier years, but that's when they were released. I've included them because this album is generally only available as part of a ten album box set called "The Natalie Merchant Collection."

This album is 53 minutes long.

Here's a list of the original artists for each song:

01 To Love Is to Bury - Cowboy Junkies
02 If I Only Had a Brain - Judy Garland & Ray Bolger (from "The Wizard of Oz")
03 Political Science - Randy Newman
04 Order 1081 - David Byrne
05 Learning the Game - Buddy Holly
06 Child of a Blind Man - Hazmat Modine
07 Joseph and Mary [The Cherry Tree Carol] - traditional
08 Let It Be - Beatles
09 The Butcher's Boy - traditional
10 Johnny Has Gone for a Soldier - traditional
11 The Village Green Preservation Society - Kinks
12 My Little Sweet Baby - traditional
13 Too Long at the Fair - Joel Zoss / Bonnie Raitt
14 Sit Down, Sister - traditional
15 I'm Only Sleeping - Beatles

Here's the usual song list:

01 To Love Is to Bury (Cowboy Junkies with Natalie Merchant)
02 If I Only Had a Brain (Natalie Merchant)
03 Political Science (Natalie Merchant)
04 Order 1081 (David Byrne & Fatboy Slim with Natalie Merchant)
05 Learning the Game (Natalie Merchant)
06 Child of a Blind Man (Hazmat Modinet with Natalie Merchant)
07 Joseph and Mary [The Cherry Tree Carol] (Natalie Merchant)
08 Let It Be (Natalie Merchant)
09 The Butcher's Boy (Kronos Quartet with Natalie Merchant)
10 Johnny Has Gone for a Soldier (Kronos Quartet with Natalie Merchant)
11 The Village Green Preservation Society (Natalie Merchant)
12 My Little Sweet Baby (Natalie Merchant)
13 Too Long at the Fair (Natalie Merchant)
14 Sit Down, Sister (Natalie Merchant)
15 I'm Only Sleeping (Natalie Merchant)

The cover photo is from a concert at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., on May 12, 2015.

Wednesday, March 13, 2024

Garth Brooks - Willie's Saloon, Stillwater, OK, 1986 (A MIKE SOLOF GUEST POST)

This is another Mike Solof guest post, but I have some things to say. First off, I'm surprised to be posting a Garth Brooks album here, because I'm not a fan of his music at all. But Mike was raving about this concert, and when I found out it's a solo acoustic show almost entirely of cover versions, I decided to check it out. I figured this might not have the production issues and other issues that I don't like about his music, and sure enough, that's the case. 

This is an album for even people like me who don't like Garth Brooks. If you like acoustic versions of great, classic songs, this is chock-full of good stuff. Heck, you don't even have to be a country music fan. There are only two Brooks originals, and the vast majority of the covers are folk and rock - Simon & Garfunkel, James Taylor, Billy Joel, Bob Seger, etc...

And although it's a bootleg from three years before he even put out his first album, the sound quality is surprisingly good.

It's unclear if this comes from one concert or several. What we do know is that Brooks was playing at small clubs in the town where he was going to college, and he probably was the one who made this recording, in order to show others his musical skills and possibly to give away or sell at his gigs. It basically sounds like a soundboard bootleg, although whether it is or not is kind of a moot point, since it literally sounds like the audience consisted of about a dozen people who were totally quiet during his songs. There's also almost no banter between songs. I'm guessing that was cut out in order to fit more songs on the tape.

Speaking of that audience noise, this version I'm posting here is the first time you can hear the clapping at all. It was way quieter. But I detected faint strains, so I used the MVSEP audio editing program to split the recording into cheering and everything else. Then I boosted the cheering up, waaaay up. Even now, the clapping is still pretty quiet, but at least it can be heard after each song. 

I also made a major edit to one song, "You Never Even Called Me by My Name." Near the end of the song, Brooks had a guest join him on stage and take over singing. He was introduced mid-song as a sports star at the college, so that explains why anyone thought it was a good idea to have him sing. But it turns out he was really bad, really out of tune. I asked Mike if I could edit him out, and Mike responded "KILL, KILL, KILL!" So that's how bad it was. I cut out a minute or two at the end of the song, but still patched in the very end, so hopefully you won't notice there was any editing at all.

As is his usual style, Mike has written some notes which are included in a PDF file with the download. I suggest you check that out to learn more about this unique recording in Brooks' music career. Mike comes at this from a different perspective as a big Brooks fan, and it's thanks to his enthusiasm that I listened to this and liked it enough to suggest that we post it.

This album is an hour and 14 minutes long.

Here's a list of the original artists for each song. 

01 Tequila Sunrise - Eagles
02 Piano Man - Billy Joel
03 Much Too Young [To Feel This Damn Old] - Garth Brooks
05 Time in a Bottle - Jim Croce
06 Rocket Man [I Think It's Going to Be a Long, Long Time] - Elton John
07 Steamroller Blues - James Taylor
08 Why Do Those Dreams Never Come True - Greg Jacobs
10 House at Pooh Corner - Loggins & Messina
11 Mrs. Robinson - Simon & Garfunkel
12 Cats in the Cradle - Harry Chapin
13 Come Monday - Jimmy Buffett
14 Please Come to Boston - Dave Loggins
15 Night Moves - Bob Seger
16 Mr. Bojangles - Jerry Jeff Walker / Nitty Gritty Dirt Band
17 The Boxer - Simon & Garfunkel
18 Sweet Baby James - James Taylor
19 Turn the Page - Bob Seger
20 Redneck Mother - Ray Wylie Hubbard
21 Only the Good Die Young - Billy Joel
22 Guitar Town - Steve Earle
23 Taxi - Harry Chapin
25 You Never Even Called Me by My Name - Steve Goodman / David Allan Coe
26 That’s the Way Love Goes - Lefty Frizzell / Merle Haggard
27 Which One of Them - Garth Brooks

Here's the usual song list:

01 Tequila Sunrise (Garth Brooks)
02 Piano Man (Garth Brooks)
03 Much Too Young [To Feel This Damn Old] (Garth Brooks)
04 talk (Garth Brooks)
05 Time in a Bottle (Garth Brooks)
06 Rocket Man [I Think It's Going to Be a Long, Long Time] (Garth Brooks)
07 Steamroller Blues (Garth Brooks)
08 Why Do Those Dreams Never Come True (Garth Brooks)
09 talk (Garth Brooks)
10 House at Pooh Corner (Garth Brooks)
11 Mrs. Robinson (Garth Brooks)
12 Cats in the Cradle (Garth Brooks)
13 Come Monday (Garth Brooks)
14 Please Come to Boston (Garth Brooks)
15 Night Moves (Garth Brooks)
16 Mr. Bojangles (Garth Brooks)
17 The Boxer (Garth Brooks)
18 Sweet Baby James (Garth Brooks)
19 Turn the Page (Garth Brooks)
20 Redneck Mother (Garth Brooks)
21 Only the Good Die Young (Garth Brooks)
22 Guitar Town (Garth Brooks)
23 Taxi (Garth Brooks)
24 talk (Garth Brooks)
25 You Never Even Called Me by My Name [Edit] (Garth Brooks)
26 That’s the Way Love Goes (Garth Brooks)
27 Which One of Them (Garth Brooks)

The cover photo is of Brooks playing at this very club, probably in 1986. If you look closely, you can even see that his cap has the name of the club on it.

Bettye LaVette - Millennium Stage, John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Washington, DC, 6-1-2022

Here's an unreleased concert by soul singer Bettye LaVette. 

I'm posting it for three reasons. One, she'd backed by just a piano player, so it's basically a solo acoustic concert. That's a very unusual format for her, and one I particularly like. Two, I found this as a YouTube video, and as far as I know it's never been made available as sound files until now. Finally, three, it's a professionally recorded web broadcast, so the sound quality is excellent.

At the time of this concert in 2022, LaVette's most recent album was "Blackbirds," released in 2020. She was still touring to support that, so most of the songs come from that. But about half of the songs come from earlier albums. However, maybe because it's only an hour-long concert, only one songs goes back to her 1960s singles, "My Man - He's a Lovin' Man."

In my opinion, LaVette is one of the most soulful singers still alive and kicking, and she definitely still has her "it" factor here.

This album is 59 minutes long.

01 talk (Bettye LaVette)
02 Misty (Bettye LaVette)
03 Intro to The Forecast [Calls for Pain] (Bettye LaVette)
04 The Forecast [Calls for Pain] (Bettye LaVette)
05 talk (Bettye LaVette)
06 Hold No Grudge (Bettye LaVette)
07 talk (Bettye LaVette)
08 Save Your Love for Me (Bettye LaVette)
09 Isn't It a Pity (Bettye LaVette)
10 talk (Bettye LaVette)
11 Just Dropped In [To See What Condition My Condition Was In] (Bettye LaVette)
12 talk (Bettye LaVette)
13 Yesterday Is Here (Bettye LaVette)
14 talk (Bettye LaVette)
15 My Man - He's a Lovin' Man (Bettye LaVette)
16 talk (Bettye LaVette)
17 Love Reign O'er Me (Bettye LaVette)
18 Intro to Blackbird (Bettye LaVette)
19 Blackbird (Bettye LaVette)

The cover is a screenshot I took from the YouTube video of this exact concert.

Tuesday, March 12, 2024

Paul McCartney - Comfort of Love - Non-Album Tracks (2002-2005)

It's been a slow process, but I continue to work my way through Paul McCartney's solo career with stray tracks compilations. We're finally firmly into the 2000s with this one, the twelfth in the series so far.

All but three of the songs have been officially released. Those three are "India," an unusual original that was only played once in concert, " Celebration (Sea Melody)," another original, and "All Things Must Pass." That last song is one of three George Harrison songs sung by McCartney in tribute, due to the fact that his fellow Beatle died in 2001. These three songs come from concert bootlegs, but all have excellent sound quality.

In 2005, McCartney released the studio album "Chaos and Creation in the Backyard," which was well received by critics. Five of the songs here are B-sides from singles released from that album, and another one is a bonus tracks. The two other George Harrison compositions, "For You Blue" and "Something," are from the "Concert for George" album in 2002. That just leaves "Whole Life," which is a collaboration with Dave Stewart of the Eurythmics, and was released on a various artists EP.

This album is 44 minutes long.

01 India (Paul McCartney)
02 For You Blue (Paul McCartney)
03 Something (Paul McCartney)
04 Celebration [Sea Melody] [Instrumental] (Paul McCartney)
05 Comfort of Love (Paul McCartney)
06 All Things Must Pass (Paul McCartney)
07 Growing Up Falling Down (Paul McCartney)
08 I Want You to Fly (Paul McCartney)
09 She Is So Beautiful (Paul McCartney)
10 Summer of '59 (Paul McCartney)
11 This Loving Game (Paul McCartney)
12 Whole Life (Paul McCartney & Dave Stewart)

The cover photo is from an appearance at the  Adopt-A-Minefield Gala in Century City, California, in October 2004.

Larkin Poe - Rockpalast, E-Werk, Cologne, Germany, 10-23-2023

I like posting music by Larkin Poe, because I feel they're very underrated and more people should listen to their music. But I've just checked, and it's been nearly a year since I last posted anything by them. I think that's mainly because I didn't see anything worthy of posting, especially when it comes to sound quality. But I've finally found this unreleased concert. They played a full concert for the German TV show "Rockpalast" six months ago (as I write this in March 2024), so the sound quality is excellent.

I consider Larkin Poe one of the best relatively new and young rock acts these days. But I gather it's not very easy for an act like theirs to get attention these days, with very limited opportunities for promotion via TV, movies, radio, and such. It seems that Larkin Poe has slowly been growing in popularity the hard way, mostly through self-promotion, especially lots of touring, and word of mouth. So I'm gratified to find out they've finally gotten popular enough to have an entire concert broadcast by Rockpalast, a very established German TV show that's been running since 1976. And, as you can see from the cover photo, their crowds are getting bigger and bigger. I think that's especially true in Europe.

Their most recent studio album is "Blood Harmony," released in 2022. They heavily promoted that album in this concert, playing eight of the eleven songs from it. Most everything they did were originals, with the exception of "Preachin' Blues" by Son House, "Crocodile Rock" by Elton John, and portions of the instrumentals "Jessica" by the Allman Brothers Band and "Rumble" by Link Wray.

Most of the music I've posted by them has been acoustic in nature, such as the long running "Tip O' the Hat" series of acoustic cover versions. But this is a very rocking concert with a full band, except for two acoustic numbers. I they're they're great in both modes, full-band and acoustic.

This concert is an hour and 22 minutes long.

01 Kick the Blues (Larkin Poe)
02 talk (Larkin Poe)
03 Summertime Sunset - Jessica (Larkin Poe)
04 talk (Larkin Poe)
05 Georgia Off My Mind (Larkin Poe)
06 Preachin' Blues (Larkin Poe)
07 talk (Larkin Poe)
08 She's a Self Made Man (Larkin Poe)
09 Back Down South (Larkin Poe)
10 Blue Ridge Mountains (Larkin Poe)
11 talk (Larkin Poe)
12 Might as Well Be Me (Larkin Poe)
13 talk (Larkin Poe)
14 Southern Comfort (Larkin Poe)
15 Crocodile Rock (Larkin Poe)
16 Rumble - Holy Ghost Fire (Larkin Poe)
17 talk (Larkin Poe)
18 Bad Spell (Larkin Poe)
19 Wanted Woman - AC-DC (Larkin Poe)
20 Bolt Cutters and the Family Name (Larkin Poe)
21 Deep Stays Down (Larkin Poe)

The cover is a screenshot I took of a video from this exact concert. I chose a frame that could give an indication of how big their crowds have grown.

Thank You and Farewell - The Closing of the Fillmore East, Fillmore East, New York City, 6-27-1971, Part 7: The Allman Brothers Band

Here's the seventh and last part of the closing of the Fillmore East in New York City in 1971, featuring the Allman Brothers Band. I was a bit reluctant to post this, because it's the only portion of the concert that has been officially released. But I ultimately decided to post it for completeness's sake. 

The version of "One Way Out" here is actually the version that appeared on the band's "Eat a Peach" album in 1972. (Other live songs on that come from earlier concerts.) Then, when the deluxe version of "Eat a Peach" was released in 2008, the entire show was included as a bonus disc. The whole show was also included on the 2014 box set "The 1971 Fillmore East Recordings."

The farewell concerts to the Fillmore East actually took place over three days, but only the final night was broadcast live on the radio, so that's the only night where we have excellent recordings. Promoter Bill Graham, who controlled the Fillmore East, considered the Allman Brothers Band his favorite musical act. So he had them as the final act for all three nights.

Unfortunately, while this set by the band was certainly excellent, it sounds like the band's set from the night before was even better, and much longer. It's considered a kind of lost holy grail for fans of the band, but no recording of it has ever emerged. According to different accounts, the band played for anything between four to seven hours!

Band member Dickey Betts later said of the concert on June 26th (the night before this one), "That was a special show. We played until daylight that morning. I remember it was dark in there, and when they opened the door, the sun about knocked us down. We didn't realize we had played until seven, eight o'clock in the morning. Bill Graham just let us rattle, and nobody said, 'We gotta cut the time.' It was just a really free kind of thing."

Band member Butch Trucks added, "We played for roughly seven straight hours with everything we had. We played a three-hour set and then came back out. The feeling from the audience, not necessarily the volume, but the feeling was just so overwhelming that I just started crying. Then we got into a jam … that lasted for four straight hours. Non-stop. And when we finished, there was no applause whatsoever. The place was deathly quiet. Someone got up and opened the doors, the sun came pouring in, and you could see this whole audience with a big shit-eating grin on their face, nobody moving until finally they got up and started quietly leaving the place. I remember Duane [Allman] walking in front of me, dragging his guitar while I was just sitting there completely burned, and he said, ‘Damn, it’s just like leaving church.'"

Trucks added, "The next night, Bill [Graham] came running over, grabbed me around the neck so hard it hurt, and said, 'Thank you, thank you, thank you, for that show. It made all the years of crap I had to put up with worth it.' And I'll never forget what he said next: 'If I had my way, when you finished this morning, I would be sealed up in my bubble and gone off to wherever I’m going.'" 

So yeah, too bad we don't have THAT recording. But this one certainly is nothing to be ashamed of. Consider that the band liked it enough to include the whole thing on the deluxe version of "Eat a Peach," when there were other 1971 soundboard recordings they could have put there instead (with some of them eventually being released later). But I read the band was tired from the night before, and they felt the audience was tired too, so they chose to keep their set short and sweet, by their relative standards.

It's also worth noting that Graham gave the band an unusually prolonged and heartfelt introduction. That included the comment, "In all my life, I've never heard the kind of music that this group plays. The finest contemporary music. We're going to round it off with the best of them all – the Allman Brothers." 

Band member Gregg Allman later commented, "That was special. I'd heard a rumor before that Bill had said of all the bands he'd ever worked with, we were his favorites, but I hadn't believed it. So when I heard him say that with my own two ears, I was elated."

This album is an hour and 16 minutes long.

63 talk by Bill Graham (Allman Brothers Band)
64 Statesboro Blues (Allman Brothers Band)
65 talk (Allman Brothers Band)
66 Don't Keep Me Wonderin' (Allman Brothers Band)
67 talk (Allman Brothers Band)
68 Done Somebody Wrong (Allman Brothers Band)
69 One Way Out (Allman Brothers Band)
70 In Memory of Elizabeth Reed [Instrumental] (Allman Brothers Band)
71 Midnight Rider (Allman Brothers Band)
72 talk (Allman Brothers Band)
73 Hot 'Lanta [Instrumental] (Allman Brothers Band)
74 Whipping Post (Allman Brothers Band)
75 talk (Allman Brothers Band)
76 You Don't Love Me (Allman Brothers Band)

The cover photo of the band's slide guitarist Duane Allman comes from this exact concert. This one, along with the photo I used for the Albert King set, were the only two good ones I could find that were actually in color. So that's why I used a photo that only shows Duane, because this was what was available.