CD Live! Across America (CD 106512),
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Live! Across America

  • 1. Road Warriors - (previously unreleased)
    2. Summer Lovers
    3. Welcome to the St. James Clu
    4. Hideaway
    5. Black Diamond
    6. South Beach Mambo
    7. She Likes to Watch
    8. Jewel Thieves
    9. Rain
    10. Avenida del Mar
    11. Purple Haze/Fire Medley - (previously unreleased)
    12. Fire
    13. Star Spangled Banner, The
    14. Are We There Yet? - (bonus track)
  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 8508

  • Credits
    ProducerRuss Freeman; Nick Sodano
    EngineerD. Ogas; Nick Sodano

    The Rippingtons include: Russ Freeman (guitar); Paul Taylor, Eric Marienthal (saxophone); Bill Heller, Dave Kochanski (keyboards); Kim Stone (bass); Dave Hooper, Dave Karasony (drums); Ramon Yslas, Scott Breadman (percussion).
    Personnel: Russ Freeman (guitar); Nick Sodano (recorder); Eric Marienthal, Paul Taylor (saxophone); Bill Heller (keyboards); Dave Hooper, Dave Karasony (drums); Ramon Yslas, Scott Breadman (percussion).
    Audio Mixers: Russ Freeman ; Nick Sodano.
    Recording information: America (1999).
    While most artists merely appreciate the applause of their fans, Russ Freeman and his Rippingtons literally take requests; though they had put out Live in L.A. in 1993, their rabid fans flooded the band's official website with requests for another live date, and this set (recorded in numerous locations throughout the U.S. on 1999's Topaz tour) is the fun-filled result. Several factors make this essential even for fans who have the first live disc: first, there are three new key players who help turn the energy level higher than before, saxman Paul Taylor, drummer Dave Hooper and percussionist Ramon Yslas. There's also a looser, more jamming and improvisational feeling, with many of the familiar tracks given significant arrangement facelifts apart from their studio counterparts. Cases in point are the eight and a half minute clapalong "Jewel Thieves" (which showcases Kim Stone's intense bass soloing) and "Summer Lovers," which breaks at one point for Taylor to blow off some soulful, spontaneous steam. Freeman's rock guitar chops have gotten more confident over the years, which makes the blistering Hendrix tribute "Purple Haze/Fire" (featuring loopy vocals by Stone and Taylor), an unforgettable reminder that the leader is a monster player as well as a great composer/producer. Bookending the set are the hard-edged guitar- and sax-driven "Road Warriors" (which sums up the frenetic tour experience) and the laid-back "Kabuki," which Freeman and Stone wrote and recorded one day at sound check. ~ Jonathan Widran

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