The Phoenix Concerts Live

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
John Stewart' Phoenix Concerts is regarded as one of the classic live records of the folk singer/songwriter genre, and it's easy to see why. It's obvious that Stewart has an adoring audience at the peak of his popularity in 1974. Taken from a few concert sessions, the bands range from the artist in a trio setting to being in a full on septet with pedal steel guitar and backing vocalists. Besides Stewart himself, the only notable performer on the sets is legendary drummer Jim Gordon. Many of Stewart's classics are here, including a very inspired "Wheatfield Lady" and "Kansas Rain." The music hearkens back to a much more innocent time that many at this concert no doubt longed ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
John Stewart' Phoenix Concerts is regarded as one of the classic live records of the folk singer/songwriter genre, and it's easy to see why. It's obvious that Stewart has an adoring audience at the peak of his popularity in 1974. Taken from a few concert sessions, the bands range from the artist in a trio setting to being in a full on septet with pedal steel guitar and backing vocalists. Besides Stewart himself, the only notable performer on the sets is legendary drummer Jim Gordon. Many of Stewart's classics are here, including a very inspired "Wheatfield Lady" and "Kansas Rain." The music hearkens back to a much more innocent time that many at this concert no doubt longed for -- as did the artist himself perhaps after 1968, when his dreams were shattered with the death of Robert Kennedy Stewart toured with Kennedy on the campaign trail. Other gems here are "California Bloodlines," "Mother Country," "The Last Campaign Trilogy," which is so moving it's almost unbearable. With "Roll Way the Stone," "July, You're a Woman," and "Cody," Stewart hits his stride and goes over the top, and the gigs shift into a whole different gear. His stories are endearing and predate what Garrison Keillor did by a decade. The set officially closes with a stunning rendition of "Never Goin' Back To Nashville Anymore," that makes you forget the studio version and wonder why it wasn't covered by Townes Van Zandt or Mickey Newbury. That said, there are two bonus tracks on the CD from the same shows, "Freeway Pleasure" and "Let the Big Horse Run," that make this an essential set for anyone interested in Stewart or the roots of the singer/songwriter movement in America that is populated by many of this artist's pupils, Jerry Jeff Walker, Guy Clark, and Tom Russell among them.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/29/1997
  • Label: One Way Records Inc
  • UPC: 046633450522
  • Catalog Number: 34505

Album Credits

Performance Credits
John Stewart Primary Artist, Acoustic Guitar, Guitar, Electric Guitar, Vocals
Jim Gordon Drums
Denny Brooks Vocals, Voices
Jonathan Douglas Organ, Percussion, Piano, Conga, Keyboards
Dan Dugmore Pedal Steel Guitar, Electric Guitar, Steel Guitar
Buffy Ford Vocals, Voices
Arnie Moore Bass, Vocals
Loren Newkirk Organ, Piano
Mike Settle Vocals, Voices
Michael Stewart Guitar, Vocals
Technical Credits
Peter Abbott Engineer, Remixing
Ken Caillat Engineer
Jack Crymes Engineer
Biff Dawes Engineer
Nick Venet Producer
Frank Mulvey Art Direction
Eddie Brennen Remixing
Ron Monzo Contributor
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Essential American music - even after 25 years!

    This is one of those rare albums that holds up with time. I've owned it in one form or another since 1975, and I play it *at least* once a month (usually more). I can't say that about any other title I've owned for that long. The music simply doesn't age, although it definitely echoes a different era. Stewart's music may, at times, seem a bit hokey, but listen to the disc a couple of times and you realize that he's tapped into the true heart of America - the heart, not the superficial trappings of greed and violence that make today's headlines - and he expresses that heart without hesitation or embarrassment. This is country, this is folk, this is singer-songwriter, all at their peak. This is music that will bring you laughter, then tears, and at times may make you want to salute the flag. This one's a keeper!

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