Friday, January 31

Robyn Hitchcock & The Egyptians - 'Thoth Boys' Live Comp

'Give It to the Thoth Boys'
made-for-fans live compilation 
various venues & dates 1991-1993
soundboard recordings (quality: Ex-; recorded from the mixing desk)

01 Egyptian Cream (Tempe, AZ 1992)
02 chat about 'My Wife'
03 My Wife and My Dead Wife (Dallas 1992) 
04 Clean Steve (Dallas 1992)
05 Glass Hotel (Minneapolis 1992)
06 When I Was Dead (New York 1992)
07 City of Shame (New York 1993)
08 Only the Stones Remain (New York 1993)
09 The Live-In Years (Los Angeles 1992)
10 Globe of Frogs (San Francisco 1992)
11 Somewhere Apart (London 1991)
12 Freeze (London 1991)
13 A Day In the Life (Dallas 1992)

ROB SEZ: Anytime's a good time for a little Robyn H. — so why not late January in 2020? This collection is from a tape compilation made available exclusively to fans in 1993, with all tracks recorded by the band from the mixing board. Egyptians bassist Andy Metcalfe selected and sequenced the tracks, sold only at live shows for a time. I cannot recall my source for this, but I'm guessing it came from the mysterious & generous Dr. Forrester. He's shared a heap o’ Robyn Hitchcock goodies through the years at his excellent Just Add Cones blog, which appears to be dormant right now. Expect more RH rarities in the coming weeks...



Friday, January 24

Tommy Keene - House Concert, Madison, WI 2014 (great!)

Kiki's House of Righteous Music 
Madison, WI
July 3, 2014

audience recording (sound quality: VG+; great capture by Mark Albers — it sounds like you're right there)

All these fab photos are by the amazing Chris Sikich
(except black & white shot above by Goro Memo)
01 Going Out Again 
02 The Puppet
03 Deep Six Saturday 
04 Behind the Parade
05 Good Thing Going
06 Compromise 
07 Black & White New York
08 My Mother Looked Like Marilyn Monroe
09 Underworld
10 When Our Vows Break
11 Back to Zero Now
12 Long Time Missing
13 Places That Are Gone
14 Astronomy
15 This Could Be Fiction 
16 Love Is a Dangerous Thing
     (with It's Not True)
17 Kill Your Sons
     (with Street Fighting Man) 
18 Highwire Days
19 Turning On Blue
20 Out of My Mind*
21 Astronomy - Laugh In the Dark*
22 Last of the Twilight Girls*

     *20-22 are from same venue, but different show 
     played Sept. 8, 2015

TK - vocals, guitar
Steve Gerlach - guitar
Brad Quinn - bass, vocals
John Richardson - drums

TK at Record Store Day 2017 in Philly
ROB SEZ: Damn! I still really miss Tommy Keene and hate the thought of not sharing the same planet with him. I never met the guy, and never got the chance to hear him play in person. But what a blazingly talented songwriter and guitar player he was. And those who knew him say he was a genuinely kind human being. Tommy never failed to move me with his incredible playing and heart-in-his-gut singing. I was feeling all this (again) the other day, when I thought: "What if I could find a great live recording to bring TK a little closer?" Lo and behold, I found this gem: recorded by Mark Albers at a house concert Tommy played in Wisconsin in 2014. The small venue, the acoustics, the audience vibe and TK's magic all come together to make for a great show. Everyone in attendance must've thought so too, because Kiki had him back the following year — thus, the 2015 bonus tracks. Check the sample, and I bet you'll be downloading it shortly thereafter.  A VERY SPECIAL THANKS to Chris Sikich for permission to use his fab photos of Tommy Keene. Chris has photographed lots of the artists we love at this blog, so go check out his web site & Flickr feed for more.
(source was lossy, so no FLAC share this time)

Friday, January 17

Alex Chilton - One Weekend in 1986 (rare!)

Alex Chilton Trio 
New York, N.Y.
April 4, 1986
  audience recording (sound quality: VG+; McKenzie source)
01 stage entrance, mix adjustment
02 Sick and Tired
03 No Sex
04 Bangkok
05 In the Street
06 Honkin' Down 
     the Highway 
07 Ubangi Stomp
08 Tee Ni Nee Ni Nu
09 B-A-B-Y
10 Rock Hard
11 Gavotte
12 Nobody's Fool
13 Let Me Get Close to You
14 Underclass
15 Lost My Job
16 tuning, band intros
17 Shake It
18 audience, return to stage
19 When My Baby's Beside Me
20 No More the Moon Shines on Lorena

Alex with Ron Easley (left) on bass at Maxwell's
photo courtesy of Jeff C. @ the fab Shake Some Action!
ROB SEZ: Here's another set of rare Alex Chilton recordings for your listening pleasure, courtesy of Tom at The McKenzie Tapes (an amazing treasure trove of live recordings from the mid-1980s and early 1990s, in & around NYC.). Imagine you were in the NYC area 34 years ago and went to hear Alex Chilton one night, and after crossing the river, heard him again the next night. To my knowledge, this is the first online sharing of these shows in lossless quality. Jeff at Shake Some Action! noted this recording could be from the late John R., a McKenzie Tapes contributor.

Hoboken, N.J. 
April 5, 1986
audience recording (sound quality: VG; McKenzie source)

01 stage entrance, tuning
02 Margie (Eddie Cantor)
03 I’m Gonna Make You Mine (Lou Christie)  
04 Boogie Shoes (KC & The Sunshine Band)
05 B-A-B-Y (Carla Thomas)
06 Thank You John (Willie Tee)
07 Sick and Tired (Chris Kenner)
08 September Gurls
09 Shake It
10 Tina the Go-Go Queen (Sir Mack Rice)
11 Stuff
12 Honkin’ Down the Highway (Beach Boys)
13 Save Your Love for Me (Buddy Johnson)
14 Youngblood (The Coasters)
15 Battle of Earl K Long (Ernie Barton)
16 The Letter (Box Tops)
17 Fields of Clover (Box Tops)
18 Nobody’s Fool (Dan Penn)
19 Past, Present, and Future (Shangri-Las)
20 No Sex
21 Te Ni Nee Ni Nu (Slim Harpo)

22 Lonely Weekends (Charlie Rich)
23 Solar System (Beach Boys)
24 The World We Knew 1st attempt 
(Frank Sinatra) 
25 The World We Knew 2nd attempt
26 Underclass
27 return to stage, tuning, banter
28 Bangkok

Please leave a comment to thank Tom & company at McKenzie Tapes

Friday, January 10

Big Star Third - Live in London 2012 with Ray Davies

Barbican Hall, Barbican Centre
London, UK
May 28, 2012
audience recording (VG++; very clear house sound, transferred from master tape)
Ray Davies takes the mic while Chris plays & directs, London, May 2012
photo by nick hider via Flickr
REPERCUSSION: Chris Stamey played bass and collaborated in other ways with Alex Chilton in the late 1970s. From 2010 to 2018, Chris organized and led live performances of Big Star’s Third. Mitch Easter was one of the players in the core ensemble. [Go to the page at this blog to discover the many connections between Alex, Chris and The dB's].
MASSIVE THANKS to Pike1957 for recording, mastering and sharing this historic show. Pike1957 says, "This recording captures a fully-orchestrated performance of Big Star's legendary third album (aka Sister Lovers) and other gems from the band’s timeless catalogue, featuring Charles Cleaver, Mitch Easter (Let’s Active), Jody Stephens (Big Star), Chris Stamey (The dB’s), and Ken Stringfellow (The Posies, Big Star). Special guests: Jon Auer (The Posies, Big Star), Norman Blake (Teenage Fanclub), John Bramwell (I Am Kloot), Sharon Van Etten, Skylar Gudasz, Brett Harris, Django Haskins (The Old Ceremony), Robyn Hitchcock, Ira Kaplan (Yo La Tengo), Sondre Lerche, Mike Mills (R.E.M.), Alexis Taylor (Hot Chip), and others."
SETLIST (lead vocalists for each song noted in parens): 
Part I
01 - intro
02 - Nature Boy (John Bramwell)
03 - announcement
04 - Kizza Me (Mitch Easter)
05 - O Dana (Ira Kaplan)
06 - For You (Jody Stephens)
07 - Nightime (Alexis Taylor)
08 - Jesus Christ (Mike Mills)
09 - Big Black Car (Jon Auer)
10 - Take Care (Ira Kaplan)
11 - Stroke It Noel (Norman Blake)
12 - Femme Fatale (Sondre Lerche)
13 - Downs (Robyn Hitchcock) [Mike Mills on basketball!]
14 - Dream Lover (Sharon Van Etten)
15 - announcement
16 - Blue Moon (Jody Stephens)
17 - Holocaust (Django Haskins)
18 - You Can't Have Me (Sharon Van Etten)
19 - Kanga Roo (Brett Harris)
21 - Thank You Friends (Jody, Jon, Ken Stringfellow & others)

Part II
22 - intro
23 - I'm In Love With a Girl (Sondre Lerche)
24 - Thirteen (Skylar Gudasz, Brett Harris & more)
25 - Give Me Another Chance (Norman Blake)
26 - I Am the Cosmos [Chris Bell cover] (Jon Auer)
27 - There Was a Light (Ken Stringfellow)
28 - You And Your Sister (Brett Harris)
29 - Daisy Glaze (Ken Stringfellow)
30 - The EMI Song (Smile With Me) (Ira Kaplan)
31 - The Ballad of El Goodo (Sondre Lerche)
32 - September Gurls (Mike Mills)
33 - Ray Davies intro
34 - Til the End of the Day [Kinks cover] (Ray Davies)
35 - Ray Davies chat
36 - The Letter (Ray Davies)
37 - audience
38 - Back of a Car (Jon Auer)
Part I
That's Mitch Easter, second from left
photo by The Guardian
The Guardian published an excellent, in-depth preview of the show, quoting Chris, Mitch and many others involved in the project. Recommended, and it's HERE. Also a great Q&A with Chris about Alex Chilton from Uncut is HERE at the Big Star Third site.    

Enjoy 3 pro-shot videos by Creato Destructo from a  Big Star Third Live performance in 2010 Kanga Roo
Big Black Car (link to Vimeo)

Friday, January 3

Alex Chilton - Maxwell's 1987 (rare!)

Alex Chilton Trio 
Hoboken, N.J.
Nov. 20, 1987

audience recording (sound quality: VG++; McKenzie master tape source; great-sounding club show with minimal crowd noise)
01 intro
02 Disco Lady
03 Take It Off
04 In the Street
05 Thing for You
06 Come By Here
07 Volaré
08 Dalai Lama
09 Make a Little Love
10 The Christmas Song
11 Little GTO
12 Goldfinger 
(fades in due 
      to tape flip) 
13 B-A-B-Y
14 No Sex
15 Rockin’ Daddy
16 Sick and Tired
17 September Gurls
18 banter, tuning, song requests
19 Girl from Ipanema
20 Duke of Earl

    ROB SEZ: I am pleased beyond words to offer a rare & rockin' Alex Chilton Trio show in great sound quality, thanks to Tom at The McKenzie Tapes. If you check out the site, you’ll discover that The McKenzie Tapes is an amazing treasure trove of live recordings from the mid-1980s and early 1990s, mostly in & around NYC. To my knowledge, this is the first online sharing of this show in lossless quality. I did very little to modify the recording as received, except to track it, apply a couple of fade-ins and fade-outs, and edit out a few minutes’ worth of onstage tuning and dead air. Enjoy, and please leave a comment to let Tom & David McKenzie know how much you appreciate their work!

    The (truly) final  studio collaboration between Alex and Big Star founder Chris Bell. Five tracks, all previously unreleased.
    Issued late 2019 by Omnivore Recordings on vinyl & digital download