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Best Live Recordings


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I have a long-time dislike for LIVE recordings, but here is my list of ones that I actually like:

1) Any Live recording by the Allman Brothers : These guys are amazing Live Players...even whacked out of their minds, they deliver soulful and inspiring music.

2) Rollerworld: Live at the Budokan 1977 - Bay City Rollers: Really only a 4-piece after Pat McGlynn was fired. This recording proves that the Rollers could ROCK live. It is stripped down to one guitar, bass and drums.

3)Jackson Browne: Running on Empty....a concept album really...all LIVE? not sure, but it is spectacular from top to bottom...

4)David Cassidy LIVE : A kick-ass band and the tunes are delivered with a different feel than the records. It also proves that DC can sing and perform with gusto. Song selection is not the best tho.

5)Bee Gees : One Night Only.....holy crap ca«n these dudes sing!...

I'm sure Mavin can add to this list BIG-TIME!

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Good topic Andy. Off the top of my head, my choices:

1. Brian Wilson: Live at the Roxy 2002 (?)

2. Wings Over America - Paul McCartney & Wings

3. Running On Empty - Jackson Browne

4. The Midnight Hour - Bruce Springsteen (recorded New Year's Eve Long Island, NY)

...more to come


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One of the best live recordings, and not actually an official release, is a sound check of AC/DC doing "Live Wire" at the Old Waldorf in San Francisco, with NO audience!! They were really into it, despite no audience.....

The Limelighters, a folk group, had an excellent live album back in the early 60s.

James Brown, at the T.A.M.I show, doing "Please Please Please".(On Video tape only).

Huey Lewis and the news doing "Heart of Rock and Roll", with Tower of Power(available as a B-side only).

Billy Joel being brought out to sing on the Garth Brooks TV special in NYC. Joel leaves and then ends up coming back a half-hour later, as he couldn't get out due to traffic backing up....so comes back to join Brooks again.

Led Zeppelin playing a live radio show from the UK, and especially good hearing a medley of "Ramble On" with Elvis' "That's Alright Mama", Buffalo Springfield's "For What It's Worth" and Donovan's "Season of the Witch" into one continuous song. Wow!

"Oh What A Night(December 1963)" by the Four Seasons.......great song to open the Seasons' set with.....

"Bad Motor Scooter" by Sammy Hagar. Sounds much better than the studio version.

"Bamboleo" by the Gipsy Kings, from the TV special.

"Paranoid" and "Never Say Die" by Ozzy Osbourne.

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My faves, in rough order:

Deep Purple - Made In Japan

Beatles - Live at the Star Club

Badfinger - BBC Live

Raspberries - On The Beach*

Grand Funk Railroad - Live Album

E.L.P. - Pictures at an Exhibition

Humble Pie - Rockin' The Fillmore

Rush - All The World's A Stage

Who - Live at Leeds

Kiss - Alive (the 1st one)

* - Okay, so this one is a bootleg of a 1973 Concert in Florida, but the version I have is one of the better live boots I've ever heard, from that era, anyway. Must've been a radio broadcast or a soundboard, but the quality is good, and the band ROCKS!! Especially on the rarely-heard covers of "Locomotion" and "Be My Baby". Is that Wally doing Ronnie Spector?? Un-fuffing believable! There's also a medley of EC ballads that shows how they could rearrange songs and create something new. Until the HOB shows come out, it's the best live Berries I've heard. Now, if Bernie wants to release a bunch of mp3s that proves me wrong, well, that's a price I'll have to pay... wink

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Not to mention Bob Seger "Live Bullet" from 1976. I think that Bob was gettin' high on his music. When I listened to the song "Heavy Music", Bob says, "All right people, we've got this 16 track tape machine rolling on back. If you sing with me I won't guarantee but ya, just might end up on an album". On the song "Nutbush City Limits" (also done by Ike & Tina Turner back in 1973), Bob says, "I read in Rolling Stone where, they said Detroit was one of the greatest rock n' roll audiences in the world". "And I said to myself sh-- i've known that for 10 years...ha ha ha"! eek The "Nine Tonight" from 1981 wasn't that great as "Live Bullet" though. By the way, Bob Seger does a guest appearance on 3 Doors Down song from their latest & 3rd CD "Seventeen Days" out today. Matt

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I'm not a huge live album fan but the ones that come to mind as being well done where in most cases the bands played live better then the studio recordings are:

Rapspberries 2004-2005 (not released yet)

Genesis Three Sides Live

Peter Frampton Comes Alive

Deep Purple Made in Japan

Cheap Trick Live At Budokan

Syd Barrett Live at BBC

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REO Speedwagon, "You Get What You Play For"....one band whose music is better recorded live than in the studio....a great album.

Elton John, liked his live version of "Funeral For A Friend" on "Here and There" better than the YBR studio version.

Rush, "All The World's A Stage",... agree with Dougjack.

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Heres a great live album(especially for all you guitarists)..."The Alice Cooper Show" it was a single album,around 1977, featured Dick Wagner and Steve Hunter on guitars(a'la Lou Reed).A "LIVE"

recording, very little overdubbing, fidelity of a

live show.What guitar interplay! Its out of print, but let me tell you, I wore my copy out.

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Randy I'm curious why you think "Frampton Comes Alive" is the greatest live cd in history? If it had sold in the thousands (like his previous albums) as opposed to the zillions, no one would have known about it. The record company tried to release "Show Me the Way" a couple of years earlier as a single, with no success, but then Peter started to make his name as a live performer, and well the rest became history.

I've heard different stories about whether that was actually a 'live' album or not, but have no idea what the truth is.


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