Saturday, 20 September 2014

San Anselmo 1971


Van Morrison has been constantly bootlegged since the beginning of his career.  I suppose the term 'bootleg' probably has less relevance in the era of downloading.  For the bootleg purist the modern term 'bootleg' refers to the albums made from live recordings or unreleased studio recordings.  To collectors and fans some of these albums become much sought after collectibles.  The frenzied downloader simply wants it all and wants it all for free.  I can't understand how people can claim to be "big Van fans" and yet have illegally downloaded all his music.  They "luv Van so much" yet fail to contribute one cent of appreciation to the Man himself.  

The bootlegs of live concerts are a different story.  There have only been 5 or 6 official live albums released, yet there are several thousand shows available on the internet. Van, could you please release 2000 live albums soon?  It would be the biggest album release in music history and would satisfy the huge base of fans who don't get to see you.

But it's not going to happen is it?  In the meantime there are lots of bit and pieces of live Van concerts to listen to on the internet.  Van surely doesn't mind if thousands of fans access concerts online?  (BTW In a perfect music world the lads from One Direction would be roadies setting up Van's equipment, not out-selling him by 100 times.)  Here's a piece about one live bootleg:


Van and Vince McConaghy? 
VAN MORRISON - SAN ANSELMO 1971


 My New World Crystal Ball [Rattlesnake RS 255/56, 2CD]


Live at The Lion’s Share, San Anselmo, CA; August 8, 1971. Excellent soundboard. Speed/Pitch Corrected.


Straight from the reels recorded at the Lion’s Share, the tiny musicians’ club in San Anselmo, CA, favoured by local residents and the scene of Janis Joplin’s funeral wake where the Grateful Dead were asked to play, comes this stunning tape featuring both the early and late shows from Van Morrison. The two shows were very possibly the result of either an early promotional drive for the Tupelo Honey LP – Van’s “Country And Western” album - or were organised for a warm up night for Van to show up and rehearse.
The recording here has Van’s voice pushed towards the left channel with the instruments pushed towards the right, the ambiance is correct for a small club recording when songs are played acoustically or with a full band. The closest I can think of is the Borderline recording with Ry Cooder/Neil Young or Patti Smith at CBGBs though there may be more that may spring to your mind.  Van’s set is almost identical for both the early and late shows with just a couple of changes in the evening for a bawdier nighttime crowd… It seems the second audience may get the better end of the bargain though as Van opens up and varies his set list just a little more…

Honestly, this may be the best Van recording I’ve heard, not withstanding it's slightly wonky mix of vocals, its beauty is in the fun that Morrison and his band are having. A fantastic recording, a great night. Another must-have release from the ’Snake'.
Disc 1 (Early show)


Track 101. Sweet Thing (acoustic) 7:51 (13.2MB)

Track 102. I Wanna Roo You (acoustic) 3:26 (5.8MB)
Track 103. Tupelo Honey (acoustic) 8:12 (13.8MB)


Track 104. Que Sera Sera 0:54 (1.5MB)

Track 105. Hound Dog 2:42 (4.5MB)

Track 106. These Dreams Of You 4:08 (7.0MB)

Track 107. Let It Be Me 4:53 (8.2MB)

Track 108. Tennessee Waltz 3:52 (6.5MB)

Track 109. Moonshine Whiskey 8:40 (14.6MB)

Track 110. Just Like A Woman 8:50 (14.8MB)

Track 111. I’ve Been Working 5:58 (10.0MB)

Track 112. Domino 7:12 (12.1MB)

Track 113. Buena Sera Senorita 3:31 (5.9MB)

71 mins


Disc 2 (Late show)


Track 201. Sweet Thing (acoustic) 8:40 (14.6MB)

Track 202. Street Choir (acoustic) 6:56 (11.6MB)
Track 203. Tupelo Honey (acoustic) 6:08 (10.3MB)


Track 204. Que Sera Sera 0:19 (543k)

Track 205. Hound Dog 2:37 (4.4MB)

Track 206. These Dreams Of You 3:59 (6.7MB)

Track 207. When That Evening Sun Goes Down 3:03 (5.1MB)

Track 208. Let It Be Me 5:01 (8.4MB)

Track 209. Moonshine Whiskey 7:13 (12.1MB)

Track 210. Just Like A Woman 8:21 (14.0MB)

Track 211. I’ve Been Working 5:22 (9.0MB)

Track 212. Gloria 3:51 (6.5MB)

Track 213. Domino 7:45 (13.0MB)

Track 214. Buena Sera Senorita 3:46 (6.3MB)


 73 mins

Reader Comments: 


Ernie Clark   -      Killer VM shows.  

Andrew Wild   -   Truly amazing show from a man at the height of his performing powers.

Sluggo   -   One time when I saw Van Morrison he was basically performing the setlist that became his Too late to stop now live LP. He had a crack band and the arrangements were tight, Van sang, hollered danced and also played sax and then as soon as the last note of each song faded he stood alone, head down and silent.He seems to have a huge case of stage fright but when that music starts up again.

Andrew Wild   -   Yeah, saw Van in Manchester in ‘83 (my first gig, unbelievably), and again at the same venue with The Chieftains, probably in ‘88, and at Glastonbury in ‘89. But not since.

Sluggo   -   would have been very cool to see him with the Chieftains.

Andrew Wild   -   The Chieftains did a set, perhaps 30-40 minutes, then a break, then Van with his band for an hour, mostly stuff from Poetic Champions Compose as I recall, then the whole of Irish Heartbeat, with the Oirish boys and Van *smiling* from time to time.  Also saw The Chieftains in Stoke-on-Trent (any Brits here will be laughing at that) in the early 90s. Quite a different audience at that one, to be sure.

Eric   -   For years, I’ve enjoyed the demo/outtake collections Gypsy Soul, Naked in the Jungle, & Laughing in the Wind, and I didn’t think I’d ever hear anything as intimate and illuminating. These shows are terrific, and the sound quality is, too. I have never seen Van Morrison live -something I regret, but there it is- and this is as close as I’m likely to get. I hope my neighbours like it-they can definitely hear it right now.  Aside from Que Sera, Sera (one of the worst songs ever written, right up there with “The Little Drummer Boy*” and “Pour Some Sugar on Me”)there are some real gems here, especially the Bob Dylan cover and the acoustic versions of songs that usually have a full arrangement. If Van released this, it would be one of his best live albums. “it’s Too Late to Stop Now” and “Belfast Opera House” are fine, but not as distinctive as this set.

Sluggo   -   Eric..while i`m not a huge fan of que sera sera either,I did see Dave Alvin and the guilty women close a show with it one night and it was magic!

JB   -   Great recording….does anyone know who is in the band?

Dwight   -   there are “possible band Members ” listed on the back sleeve, but a totally different band than that was playing with him a month later at Pacific High studios.
Van Morrison - guitar, harmonica, vocal 
Ronnie Montrose - electric and acoustic guitars, mandolin 
Mark Jordan - piano, organ
Bill Church - bass
Bill Atwood - trumpet, trombone 
Jack Schroer - soprano, alto, and baritone saxophones, piano 
Rick Shlosser - drums, percussion
Ellen Schroer - vocals 
Janet Morrison - vocals

Andrew Wild   -   I did indeed … he was remarkably relaxed and smiley that night … it was a blast :)

Dan C.   -   Bill Church? The Electric Church of Montrose and later Sammy Hagar fame??!! Nice!!!

Andrew Wild   -   Hi Mike,  It sounds to me that the mixes are different for each show … the vocal is far left on the second show, and the stereo spread for all instruments is much wider for the first show with vocal just left of centre.
Jaap   -   On Dime and Electric Ladyland quite some alternate versions are available: speed corrected, mono, pitch & speed corrected also. So far, I discovered about 6 different versions….Oh, and all versions are lossless, no mp3!

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