This week, I’m presenting reviews of audio/video packages by The Rolling Stones and Jeff Beck, to be followed as soon as possible by The Who. Read on for what your favorite classic rockers (or old dinosaurs) are up to now.
‘From The Vault: Sticky Fingers Live At The Fonda Theatre 2015,’ The Rolling Stones (Eagle Rock Entertainment, ☆☆☆☆☆)
This Sept. 29 release is available in DVD+CD, Blu-Ray+CD, DVD+three LPs and digital formats. The DVD, which captures the Rolling Stones’ May 20, 2015, live performance of the album “Sticky Fingers,” kicks off with “Start Me Up,” but quickly gets into songs from what most would agree is the penultimate album from the Mick Taylor era of the Stones. “Sway,” “Dead Flowers,” “Wild Horses,” “Sister Morphine,” “You Gotta Move,” “Bitch,” “Can’t You Hear Me Knocking,” “I Got The Blues,” “Moonlight Mile” and “Brown Sugar” are all presented on this fifth installment in the “From The Vault” series. Short black-and-white interviews with Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts and Ron Wood give telling glimpses of their feelings about different songs and playing them. Plus, three bonus songs are included.
I enjoyed “Knocking” the most, but the country-flavored “Dead Flowers” and “Wild Horses” (with Keith harmonizing), “You Gotta Move” (great audience participation), the magnificent “Moonlight Mile,” one of their best rockers “Brown Sugar” and a B.B. King tribute, “Rock Me Baby” are all cool.
This package will be invaluable for Stones fans, and surprised this fan by how good the “Sticky Fingers” songs sound in concert.
‘Live at the Hollywood Bowl,’ Jeff Beck (Eagle Rock Entertainment, ☆☆☆☆☆)
This Oct. 6 release is available in the above formats, and presents guitar hero Jeff Beck celebrating his 50-year music career in the summer of 2016 along with special guests (Steven Tyler, Billy Gibbons, Jan Hammer, Beth Hart, Jimmy Hall and Buddy Guy). Jeff covers all bases here: his new-at-the-time album, his Yardbirds days, his fusion days, two different Jeff Beck Groups and more. His band includes drummer Jonathan Joseph, bassist Rhonda Smith, rhythm guitarist Carmen Vandenberg and “Loud Hailer” vocalist Rosie Bones.
Favorites include tunes from that album, Jimmy Hall singing lead on “Over Under Sideways Down,” “For Your Love,” and “Morning Dew,” Gibbons singing/playing on “Rough Boy,” Buddy dueling with Jeff on “Let Me Love You,” Beth over-singing on “I’d Rather Go Blind,” Steven wailing on “Train Kept a’Rollin’” and “Shapes of Things” and Jeff’s gorgeous instrumental Beatles song, “A Day In The Life.”
Beth sings lead as all participants perform a stirring encore of “Purple Rain” in honor of Prince’s recent-at-the-time passing. This package will be valued by all good music fans.
Ricky Flake, a former punk rocker and current music fan, lives in Biloxi. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.