Friday, August 16

Sam Phillips - Los Angeles, CA 1991 + bonus 1989

Wiltern Theatre
Los Angeles, CA
June 4, 1991

audience recording (sound quality VG+; full, satisfying sound; little bit of crowd chatter here and there, but nothing too distracting; also a few very brief anomalies that sound like the taper adjusting the mics)
At the time of this show, Sam’s current album was Cruel Inventions.
Bill Rogers created this graphic based on the album’s cover image.
SAMPLE: "Cruel Inventions" (LA 1991) 
01 Go Down
02 Now I Can't Find the Door
03 Standing Still
04 Tripping Over Gravity
05 Cruel Inventions
06 Flame
07 Raised On Promises
08 Lying
09 Trying to Hold On to the Earth
10 These Boots Are Made for Walkin'
Musicians (educated guess re: who played what):
Sam Phillips - vocals, guitar 
Michael Blair - percussion 
Rick Boston - guitar 
T-Bone Burnett (aka "Ogden Nashville") - additional guitar 
Denny Fongheiser - drums Mark Hart - keyboard 
Eric Presley - bass  

Sam was opening for Elvis Costello, who had a 6-night run of shows in 1991, at the Wiltern in L.A. (May 28 & 29, June 3 & 4) and the Greek Theatre in Berkeley (May 31 and June 1). Being the final night of the series, you can hear Sam's confidence and the musical assuredness of the band. Listen to the gorgeous arrangements, some of which are creative variations on the album versions (not to mention the hilariously sardonic between-song commentary by Sam…).  
Sam Phillips
Boulder's Cover
Boulder, CO
April 1989 (exact date unknown)

FM recording (sound quality VG++; would have graded this Ex- but some recurrent vocal distortion earns it a lower rating [it doesn't ruin the listening experience by any means, but some of you will notice it]). I'm guessing this is a radio broadcast of a concert that featured more music, but perhaps this is all that was transmitted or taped…

Sam is so photogenic that Hollywood came calling, and cast her in one of the "Die Hard" movies back in the 1990s —   as a terrorist!  

01 I Don't Want to Fall In Love
02 The Turning
03 What You Don't Want to Hear
04 Libera Me
05 Carry You
06 Remorse
07 Raised on Promises
08 Flame
09 Trying to Hold On to the Earth
10 Down
11 No One But You
12 These Boots Are Made for Walkin'  

This show captures Sam Phillips during a career transition, featuring mostly songs from The Turning (her final "Christian" album under the name Leslie Phillips) and The Indescribable Wow (her first on a "secular" label as Sam Phillips). Both were produced by T-Bone Burnett, whom she married between the recording of the two albums. Apparently, Sam really digs that ol' Nancy Sinatra tune...

Sam Phillips - vocals (and guitar?)
Jeff Campbell - guitar
Michito Sanchez - percussion & drums
David Miner - bass "…and everything else"

Sam's latest fab album is
Push Any Button

Buy it in various formats directly from the artist.
Learn more about the music of Sam Phillips
at her web site &/or AllMusic  


  1. Great artist. And I also agree on the photogenic part. And that's not being a lusty creep. It's just that some people really grab the camera with their look and image.

    Ace K.