Bob Weir continued his Weir Here performance / Q&A series last night via a live webcast originating from his TRI Studios facility in the Bay Area last night. For this ninth installment of Weir Here, the Furthur / Grateful Dead guitarist was joined by a cast of characters that included Talking Heads / Modern Lovers keyboardist/guitarist Jerry Harrison, former Van Halen vocalist Sammy Hagar, singer/songwriter Lukas Nelson and RatDog rhythm section Robin Sylvester and Jay Lane.
Hagar, Weir’s longtime friend and neighbor, started things off by fronting the assembled musicians on Loose Lucy and Mustang Sally and backed up Nelson on JJ Cale’s Call Me The Breeze. Lukas then offered up his novelty song I’m Stuck with a Boner on a Bus Full of Guys before giving way to Harrison for a rollicking version of Life During Wartime. Bobby and Lukas shared lead vocals on a cover of Come Together by The Beatles which was followed the a pair of GD classics – Friend of the Devil and Althea. The group then tipped its cap to the other legendary act Harrison was a part of – Modern Lovers – by tackling She Cracked. For the finale, Weir led the ensemble through I Know You Rider.
Set: Loose Lucy (Sammy/Bob) [MISSING FROM VIDEO] > Mustang Sally (Sammy), Call Me the Breeze (Lukas) <exit Sammy> I’m Stuck with a Boner on a Bus Full of Guys (Lukas), Life During Wartime (Jerry), Come Together (Bob/Lukas), Friend of the Devil (Bob) > Althea (Lukas), She Cracked (Jerry), I Know You Rider (Bob)
If we had the power to go back to see a show from any tour that took place in the past, checking out Talking Heads’ landmark Remain In Light Tour would be near the top of our list. David Byrne and Co. were feeling their oats thanks in part to an expanded band that featured stunt guitarist Adrian Belew.
Earlier this year we hipped you to video of a performance from this tour that took place on December 18, 1980 in Rome. Today, we share 50-minutes worth of incredible footage from the next show on that incredible tour. On December 20, 1980 the Talking Heads performed at Westfalenhalle in Dortmund, West Germany for a show that was broadcast on a German television program called Rockpop. This eight-song set includes a sizzling version of The Great Curve and an insane Crosseyed and Painless that puts Belew in the spotlight. So blow off work and feast your eyes an ears on this…
Among all the hits in the Talking Heads catalog, the band had a few singles that didn’t hit as big as Psycho Killer, Once In A Lifetime or Burning Down the House, but that stack right up amongst the best in the catalog. (Nothing But) Flowers off the band’s last studio album, Naked, is one of those songs. In fact, it might actually be David Byrne’s best lyrical song of all and musically it’s right up there too.
The reason for the inclusion of (Nothing But) Flowers today is that this song has a certain relevance in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy as so many people continue to await the return of electricity, heat and hot water. This song takes a reverse lens look at a society that goes from being inundated with modern comforts to one that reverts back to its natural undeveloped state. Ironically, where most musicians would sing a song about wanting to get back to nature, Byrne’s song highlights how his character misses the cars, the parking lots, the shopping malls, the 7-Elevens, the Dairy Queen’s and the nightlife. This is an insanely clever song. Also, see if you can spot Johnny Marr in the video.
On December 18, 1980 the touring version of the Talking Heads featuring stunt guitarist Adrian Belew delivered a fantastic performance at Palaeur Arena in Rome that was filmed for broadcast on Italian TV. Taking place just two months after the release of Remain In Light, that night’s set was heavy on material from that album such as Born Under Punches, Crosseyed and Painless and The Great Curve. Using multiple cameras and a masterful director, who really enjoyed airing shots of bassist Tina Weymouth shaking her butt, the resulting footage is must-see for any Talking Heads fan.
YouTuber Telekinetica has uploaded a pristine copy of nearly all of this widely bootlegged show to the video portal yesterday. We’ve prepared a playlist for your viewing pleasure…
Psycho Killer/Stay Hungry (one track), Cities/I Zimbra/Drugs (all one video), Take Me To The River, Crosseyed & Painless, Life During Wartime, Houses In Motion, Born Under Punches, The Great Curve
The Talking Heads were at the peak of their powers during the early ’80s. There’s been lots of dreaming and scheming about a Talking Heads reunion, especially by the members of the band who aren’t named David Byrne, but perhaps this footage shows some things are left best in the past.
Life During Wartime by The Talking Heads (not to be confused with the Pinhead Gunpowder punk song, or the 2009 movie from Todd Solondz) provides a view of NYC living in the late 1970′s as a metaphor for those who were living in the Big Apple during the Second World War. Lines such as “The sound of gunfire, off in the distance, I’m getting used to it now” and “I got three passports, couple of visas, don’t even know my real name” are near apocalyptic in their emotional provocations.
The refrain is catchy and memorable, sung with enthusiasm by crowds, “This ain’t no party, this ain’t no disco, this ain’t no fooling around … I ain’t got time for that now.” Seen in Stop Making Sense, the song has joggers in ’80s era wardrobe dancing behind the rubber-legged David Byrne. Life During Wartime is a powerful song and seems to bring out a strong performance from the groups that play it in concert.
Artist: Widespread Panic Live Video: 7-28-2008 The Skinny: One of the more well-known covers of Life During Wartime comes from Widespread Panic, a band heavily influenced by Talking Heads. John Bell’s gritty voice, as well as the band’s rocking throughout the song, create a dance frenzy and increases the energy of the crowd when placed in the second set.
We couldn’t have been more excited when Eagle Rock Entertainment announced they had put together a DVD called Chronology featuring live Talking Heads performances ranging from the group’s start to the last time they played together at the 2002 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony. The tracklist didn’t just focus on the band’s best known material and contained a number of songs that didn’t make Jonathan Demme’s epic 1984 concert film Stop Making Sense.
Chronology is finally out and it’s everything we wished it would be, though it makes us hopeful footage of the full concerts where the tracks were culled from will see the light of day. A few samples are available on YouTube, so we thought we’d share them with you.
Here’s Cities from the 1982 Montreux Jazz Festival…
And now the gem of the release, a stunning take on Crosseyed and Painless featuring blistering guitar work by Adrian Belew, BOTH Tina Weymouth and Busta Cherry Jones on bass and Bernie Worrell on keys…
There’s been plenty of live Talking Heads audio recordings to make the rounds over the last few decades, but finding video footage of the band in action hasn’t been as easy. For a group that’s so visually oriented, we’ve always wanted to see more film from their vaults and our wishes have been granted with the announcement that the career-spanning Chronology DVD will come out on October 18.
This 18-track DVD starts with Mic Test from 1976 and includes lots of early TH material before moving on to the early ’80s for takes on Crosseyed and Painless, Cities and Burning Down The House. Chronology concludes with Life During Wartime from the 2002 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony, where the group ever so briefly reunited. Those purchasing the deluxe edition will get a 48-page book that features an essay by Lester Bangs and plenty of photos. Let’s hope for a trailer soon.
01. Mic Test (1976)
02. With Our Love (1975)
03. I’m Not in Love (1975)
04. Psycho Killer (1975)
05. Intros Montage (1976)
06. The Girls Want to Be with the Girls (1976)
07. Don’t Worry About the Government (1978)
08. Dressing Room Fan Footage: Found a Job (1978)
09. Thank You for Sending Me an Angel (1978)
10. Warning Sign (1978)
11. Artists Only (1979)
12. Take Me to the River (1979)
13. Crosseyed and Painless (1980)
14. Animals (1980)
15. Love ? Building on Fire (1982)
16. Cities (1982)
17. Burning Down the House (1983)
18. Life During Wartime (2002)
MTV News anchor Kurt Loder spearheaded a short feature back in 1996 regarding Phish’s performance of the Talking Heads’ Remain in Light, which interspersed live footage of the musical costume, interviews with the band (over what looks like a sushi dinner), gushing fans & even a little Famous Mockingbird. Nice Trey quote to close it out. Take a look…
My favorite set from Jam Cruise came from The Motet plays The Talking Heads featuring all-star musicians Dave Watts, Fuzz and Carrie, Kyle Hollingsworth, Joey Porter, Liza Oxnard and Paul McDaniel. Check out their version of Life During Wartime filmed on the Pool Deck at Jam Cruise 8…
This week we’ve got arguably the first love song that The Talking Heads ever recorded. This track was originally released on the 1983 album Speaking In Tongues. Click here to view the video of this song from Stop Making Sense.
Did you know that the studio recording of this tune had members of the band not playing their primary instruments? It was: Jerry Harrison (bass), Tina Weymouth (guitar), and David Byrne (keyboards).
The Arcade Fire: Arcade Fire have the advantage of being the only band this week that has performed this song with David Byrne. That performance from New York City, was released on vinyl as the B-Side to the Neighborhood #3 (Power Out) single promoting the band’s 2004 album Funeral. Source: Neighborhood #3 Vinyl Single
And some video of the band performing the song by themselves:
READ ON for the rest of this week’s Cover Wars contestants…
[Originally Published 7/4/07] We’ve got an abridged version of GTA for this week’s edition — well, less words, more links. There’s something for everyone on the list of streamable shows from SugarMegs, all concerts played on the Fourth of July. Clever, no? Shut it.
The suits at MTV weren’t happy to see YouTube come into the picture a few years back to become THE place to watch old music videos. MTV made videos what they are before relegating them to MTV2 in lieu of such brilliant programing as The Real World – Weehawken and True Life: My Son Fucks Goats. This week, MTV finally got in the game by launching MTV Music.
The MTV Music portal features over 16,000 videos, Unplugged performances and exclusive MTV concert footage with the promise of much more to come. I spent a few hours combing through the site last night and found some really cool clips. Here’s ten great videos from the ’80s I hadn’t seen in years…
Most people focus on Touch of Grey when discussing the Grateful Dead’s music videos, but they actually made a number of promotional videos including Just A Little Light, Hell In A Bucket, We Can Run and this clip for Built To Last’s Foolish Heart.
READ ON for eight more videos from deep within MTV’s vault…
Two weeks ago, we took a look at some Classic Rock albums that don’t get enough love. This week, we’ll take a peak at five of the best Live Classic Rock albums. A few disclaimers before we get started: Only official, live releases are included. Nothing more than a double album was considered. In other words, no box sets. Now that you know the rules, grab your lighter and muzzle the chants for Freebird for our Classic Rock Encore:
5. Neil Young – Live Rust
You get the best of both Neils on this collection pulled from a San Francisco performance in late 1978. Young’s calming voice and mellow mind is showcased in the opening tracks, including Sugar Mountain, I am a Child, Comes a Time and After the Gold Rush. Then his fractured-chord, straight ahead rock and roll takes over. When You Dance I Can Really Love kicks off the party as Young slowly builds to a trifecta of powerhouses – Powderfinger, Cortez the Killer and Cinnamon Girl.
Prior to the classic The Needle and the Damage Done, you can clearly hear a serious storm move in. Stagehands worry about guitars and Young leads the crowd in a chant of “No Rain!” I recall hearing a legend about that chant serving as inspiration to Blind Melon’s bumble bee friendly single of the same name. True or not, this album is certainly inspiring enough to make it believable. Read on for more of Luke’s list…