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Live at Last!

Steeleye Span: Live at Last! (BGOCD 342)

Live at Last!
Steeleye Span

Chrysalis CHR 1199 (LP, UK, 1978)
Chrysalis CHR 1199 (LP, US / Canada, 1978)
Phonogram/Chrysalis 6307 639 (LP, Germany, 1978)
Ariola/Chrysalis 202.749-320 (LP, Germany, 1978)
BGO Records BGOCD 342 (CD, UK, April 1997)
BGO Records BGOCD 1147 (2 CD w/ Sails of Silver, UK, May 2014)

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Recorded live at the Winter Gardens, Bournemouth, 7 March 1978;
Engineered by Mike Thompson at the Maison Rouge Mobile Studio;
Mixed by Tim Hart and Mike Thompson at Wessex Studios, London;
Concert sound by Scott ‘Colac’ Thompson;
Concert lighting by Clive ‘Colac’ Davies;
Tea and tuck by Hazel Tether;
Road crew: Andy Banks, John Wilford, Patrick Whitley.

Musicians

Maddy Prior, vocals;
John Kirkpatrick, vocals, accordion;
Martin Carthy, vocals, guitar;
Tim Hart, vocals, guitar;
Rick Kemp, bass;
Nigel Pegrum, drums

Tracks

Again, there are two versions. The UK LP and CD have these tracks:

Side 1Side 2
  1. The Atholl Highlanders / Walter Bulwer's Polka (5.08)
  2. Saucy Sailor (Roud 531; Laws K38; G/D 1:49) /
    Black Freighter (9.50)
  3. The Maid and the Palmer (Roud 2335; Child 21) (6.37)
  4. Hunting the Wren (Roud 236) (3.09)
  1. Montrose (15.16)
  2. Bonnets So Blue (3.30)
  3. The False Knight on the Road (Roud 20; Child 3) (6.09)

All tracks trad. except
Track 2b Bertolt Brecht, Kurt Weill

The American and Canadian LPs miss Bonnets So Blue but instead have a studio recording of the Four Seasons song, Rag Doll, which was later re-released on the 2CD compilation Spanning the Years:

Side 1Side 2
  1. The Atholl Highlanders / Walter Bulwer's Polka (5.06)
  2. Saucy Sailor (Roud 531; Laws K38; G/D 1:49) /
    Black Freighter (9.50)
  3. The Maid and the Palmer (Roud 2335; Child 21) (6.37)
  4. Hunting the Wren (Roud 236) (3.09)
  1. Montrose (15.12)
  2. The False Knight on the Road (Roud 20; Child 3) (6.07)
  3. Rag Doll (3.20)

All tracks trad. except
Track 2b Bertolt Brecht, Kurt Weill;
Track 7 Bob Crewe, Bob Gaudio

Sleeve Notes

Eighty years ago a collection of worthy gentlefolk formed the English Folk Song Society with the intention of collecting and protecting our diminishing heritage of traditional music from the ravages of popular song.

Eight years ago a collection of musicians formed a group called Steeleye Span with the intention of taking this well preserved music, revitalising it and putting it back into the world of popular song.

We were told it couldn't be done; that traditional songs and ballads, mummers plays, sword dances and morris dances had no place in the world of rock; that they were relics of the past with no relevance outside of folk clubs and universities.

We proved them wrong with a gold album, five silver albums, two hit singles and concert success in America, Australiasia and Europe as well as Great Britain.

This then is our eleventh and final album. Steeleye Span amicably disbanded five days after making this recording for reasons that are irrelevant here. It is the music that counts and it has proved to be timeless, indestructable and, curiously enough, popular.

Tim Hart

> Steeleye Span > Records > Live at De Montfort Hall

Live at De Montfort Hall

Steeleye Span: Live at De Montfort Hall (The Store for Music SJPCD601)

Live at De Montfort Hall
Steeleye Span

The Store for Music SJPCD601 (CD, UK, 27 September 2019)

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The CD's booklet states that this was “originally recorded for radio broadcast”. However, the sound quality is so awful that I suspect it is a bootleg of a privately made recording.

Produced by Steve Merike;
Recorded live at De Montfort Hall, Leicester, on 11 February 1978;
Recorded by John Arniold assisted by John Moon

Musicians

Maddy Prior, vocals;
John Kirkpatrick, vocals, accordion;
Martin Carthy, vocals, guitar;
Tim Hart, vocals, guitar;
Rick Kemp, bass, vocals;
Nigel Pegrum, drums, percussion

Tracks

  1. Galtee Farmer (Roud 9305, 5312) (5.08)
  2. Awake, Awake (5.08)
  3. Saucy Sailor (Roud 531; Laws K38; G/D 1:49) (9.50)
  4. Black Freighter (9.50)
  5. Hunting the Wren (Roud 236) (3.09)
  6. Sweep, Chimney Sweep (Roud 1217) (3.09)
  7. The Duke of Atholl Highlanders (5.08)
  8. Walter Bulwer's Polka (5.08)
  9. Cam Ye O'er Frae France (Roud 5814; G/D 1:120) (5.08)
  10. The Boar's Head Carol (Roud 22229) (5.08)
  11. Seventeen Come Sunday (Roud 277; Laws O17; G/D 4:791; Henry H152, H793) (5.08)
  12. Rave On [Sonny West, Bill Tilghman, Norman Petty]

All tracks trad. except
Track 4 Bertolt Brecht, Kurt Weill;
Track 12 Sonny West, Bill Tilghman, Norman Petty;

Review

I took a risk on this because we were at this gig in February 1978, but sadly my worst fears were realised. The recording is frankly awful with clear speed issues on some of the tracks and a noticeable lack of balance throughout. The result is that the band sounds plodding, sparse and amateurish, a travesty of the actual concert which was superb. Worth having only as a nostalgia item if you were there, but if you want a true impression of the live band in the seventies, steer clear. It's telling that the producers of this album couldn't even get the year right on the front cover.
— Mr. N.R. Ash on Amazon