Undoubtedly one of the first the comes to mind is Graham Parker Live! Alone in America.
Simple (Basically Graham and a guitar on stage) and very powerful music. Ive had this disc for years and can always listen to it! Id put it in as one of the best live recording of all time without a doubt!
I really like live recordings! Something about nowhere to hide.......
Right now, I really like Eva Cassidy's "Live at Blues Alley". A simply stunning vocal performance!
Patricia Barber's "Companion" is really nice. Both the PB and EC disk give you that "you are there" feeling.
To understand The Indigo Girl's, I suggest their live "2000 Curfews" 2-disk set. Nice!! It puts me back in the front row every time I listen to it.
Of course there are the old classics like Little Feats "Waiting for Columbus". How disappointing to find out years later that it was "doctored up" significantly in the studio.
Don't know the album they originally came from, but there are some live cuts on Willie Nelsons "Revolutions of time" compilation that I think are outstanding. Of course, you might need to be a Willie fan to enjoy them!
Some albums that I've always liked.... Streetheart-''Live After Dark'', and BB King- "Live at Cook County Jail''. Also Thin Lizzy ''Live and Dangerous'',and Ella Fitzgerald and Duke Ellington ""Ella and Duke At the Cote D'azur''
The most recent live album i've been impressed with is dave matthew's band 'live in central park'. these 3 discs really seem to capture the magic of that evening. they just have a great 'live' feel to them, that some live discs lack...
I like my live recordings to have an element of rawness and improvisation.
Allman Bros... "Live at Filmore East" (I love improvisation and no other rock band has ever done that better than the Brother's, especially with Duane... incidently I saw them live last year and it was by far the best show I've seen in years... they still got it) Johnny Cash... "Folsom Prison Blues" Jimmy Page & The Black Crowes... "Live at the Creek" Eva Cassidy... "Live at Blues Alley".
My all time favorite is a live bootleg Grateful Dead recording at Cornell University in 1977. This recording really captures their "wall of sound" they had during that time and their improvisational prowess which makes their live stuff so great. I am by no means a Dead Head... but when you listen to their good live recordings it is obvious that Jerry Garcia is a stone cold genious.
One recently released and just totally shocked me is by pianist Michel Camilo, "Live at the Blue Note". I was at the used cd store, rifling thru the bins and noticed this one because it is on Telarc. After further examination, it is also processed in DSD. I sampled it at the store with headphones and as soon as playback started, I jumped startled as I thought someone was sneaking up behind me in the store but it was actually the MC introducing the band on the disc. The "air", the width and especially depth of soundstage on this disc is uncanny and mind boggling! Even though this is not my favorite style of jazz music, I bought it because I figured that if it sounded soo amazing through the the poor quality equipment used and abused to sample discs in a pre-owned cd store, then it would provide nirvana and extascy when played back on my high resolution system...and boy was I right on...it has earned benchmark status as a demo disc of the thousand+ that I own and I don't mean one cut of the whole 2 cd set...the whole thing is killer!!! Check it out..you'll be soo glad you did...Jeff
Minor correction to Lokie: The Dead were no longer using the Wall of Sound PA in 1977. At the time of that deservedly-famous Cornell show, they were playing through the reinforcement system operated by Bill Graham's FM Productions. If your tape is off the board, as opposed to an audience recording, it doesn't really matter.
Dave Alvin and the Guilty Men- "Out in California" Also the Dick's Picks series is outstanding from top to bottom and is a fabulous musical and historical feast for anyone who loves live music, the Grateful Dead, or both.
My favorites are: 1) Lou Reed - Rock'n Roll Animal 2) Climax Blues Band - FM Live 3) Marshall Tucker Band - Where We All Belong (only disc 2 is live) 4) Mountain - Twin Peaks 5) Grateful Dead - Reckoning 6) Allman Bros. - At Fillmore East
1&2 were recorded at the same venue - Howard Stein's Academy of Music NYC.
Jsonic, Having a bit of inside info, the reason 5/8/77 hasn't been released as a Dick's Pick is that they try to shy away from shows that have really high quality recording already in circulation. That being said, they'll eventually get around to releasing just about everything givben enough time.
One current fav is Peter Gabriel "Secret World Live" DVD (10-yr-old concert released in 2003). Also comes on CD, so I'm not cheating too much. Paula Cole helps make it memorable, as do top-notch renderings of Solsbury Hill, Come Talk to Me, Steam, Don't Give Up, etc.
I own a number of these recordings, so the only one I'll add to the list is Simon & Garfunkle's "Concert In Central Park". The album has some great music, and is exceptionally well recorded for a live, open-air concert.
I remember reading a huge thread about that 5/8/77 show saying how it never happened. The argument was that it was too perfect in both performance and sound quality and was merely a compilation of different songs from other shows. It was pretty entertaining, but when you listen to the show you can tell that every track has the same sound and couldn't possibly come from different recordings from different venues.
Bauhaus - 'The Sky's Gone Out', Double Album with extra live album , (Press The Eject And Give Me The Tape)-Label:Beggars Banquet. It's got 'The Spy In The Cab','Kick In The Eye', Stigmata Martyr' and 'Bela Lugosi Is Dead (UNDEAD)'. It's the kind of music that keeps me together!
Here's 2 in the same vein: Smokin at The Fillmore by Humble Pie and what is probably the best selling live album ever the now dated "Frampton Comes Alive". You may be reluctant to admit it now but you bought it and loved it when it came out.