We are privileged to receive invites to “free” private concerts at Mohegan Sun as Momentum members. The latest concert we thoroughly enjoyed was Peter Frampton on Sunday June 12th.
This was my third time seeing Peter Frampton in concert in 41 years. I always liked the Humble Pie Rockin the Fillmore live recording. I interviewed Peter backstage at Staples High School in 1975. He was promoting the Frampton studio album that started his meterotic rise the following year with Frampton Comes Alive. I found him gracious to grant an hour of his time while he tuned his guitar. I got a private concert before the rest of the audience that night 😉
(I scanned my past article from The Entertainer music newspaper that I wrote for in the mid-70s. I also sold ads for them, making 40% per ad in those days. Sorry it is grainy and has my ink edits.) —> Peter Frampton
I next saw Frampton with my son at the Sixth Annual Jammy Awards in 2006 at the Theatre at Madison Square Garden. Peter Frampton joined Guster and worked on material from Guster’s new album Ganging up the Sun. Martin Sexton also joined them for a version of Frampton’s “Do You Feel Like We Do.”
Considering that the June 12 show was free I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. He didn’t disappoint as Peter Frampton and his band played strong for 90 minutes plus a three song encore. His guitar playing has reached another dimension of excellence. He played a cover version of Black Hole Sun by Soundgarden that knocked me out.
I was quite impressed with the instrumental songs he played from the Fingerprints album, which was awarded a Grammy Award in 2007. Frampton was on the mark. He’s a true professional as was his stellar band.
Leslie West’s forthcoming album, Soundcheckpegs the needle in the red. That is the infamous sound we have come to expect from this premier rock guitarist.
Soundcheck is the sixteenth solo album from the legendary rock guitarist Leslie West.
Leslie lays down some of his most inspired musical magic to date with by collaborating with renowned British guitarists Peter Frampton and Brian May, ex-Jeff Beck keyboard virtuoso Max Middleton, vocalist extraordinaire Bonnie Bramlett (Delaney & Bonnie) and the late great Cream bassist and longtime friend of Leslie’s, Jack Bruce.
Closing out his new album “Soundcheck”, is a treasure for all longtime fans of Leslie West: a live version of Willie Dixon’s, “Spoonful,” recorded with Jack Bruce on bass and vocals and Joe Franco on drums, played in the classic Cream style as captured on 1968’s Wheels of Fire. “Back in 1988, I recorded an album called, Theme, which featured Jack on bass. We recorded at Millbrook in upstate New York, and the owner of The Chance in Poughkeepsie called and asked if we wanted to come over and do a set there, with no advertising, no nothing. Jack was into it, and the engineer at Millbrook, Paul Orofino, came with us and recorded the gig with a small portable stereo machine. “After hearing of Jack’s passing, we edited it down from its original length and decided it would be great to include on the record. As you can hear, I was trying to reincarnate myself into Eric Clapton! The first time I listened to Jack’s voice and the tone of his bass on the recording, I had tears in my eyes. I loved Jack so much.”
LESLIE WEST – SOUNDCHECK
Label: Provogue Records
Release Date: November 20, 2015
01. Left By The Roadside To Die
02. Give Me One Reason
03. Here For The Party
04. You Are My Sunshine
05. Empty Promises Nothin Sacred
06. A Stern Warning
07. People Get Ready
08. Going Down
09. Stand By Me
10. Eleanor Rigby
Omnivore Recordings has released all four sets recorded that weekend in a four CD box set “Performance: Rockin’ the Fillmore-Complete Recordings”.
“My God, it just took my breath away,” Jerry Shirley said of hearing the new mixes by engineer Ashley Shepherd. “You feel like you’re sitting in the Fillmore East, five or six rows back. In the quiet bits, you could hear a pin drop, and in the loud bits, you can almost feel the room shaking. And all four shows caught Steve at the absolute zenith of his powers. It’s astonishing. I’m only sorry that he, Greg, and Dee aren’t around to enjoy it with the rest of us.”
“It was amazing to hear the new mixes of these shows after all these years,” says Peter Frampton. “This really was that version of Humble Pie at the peak of its powers—playing in a venue with a wonderful vibe.”
Nicky Hopkins is without question rock’s greatest session musician. His signature contributions are still felt strongly today, 18 years after his passing. I continue being blown away by the breadth and depth of Nicky Hopkins piano contributions to rock.history
My first encounter with Nicky Hopkins’s musicianship was with The Jeff Beck Group and Beck-Ola. I saw Nicky Hopkins play with The Jeff Beck Group at the Fillmore East on July 3, 1969. He is depicted performing with The Jeff Beck Group on the cover of this definitive book by Julian Dawson.
Nicky Hopkins got his recording start with Del Shannon. You can hear his piano virtuoso as a lad of 17 on the 1961 hit, “Runaway”. His frail health (he suffered from Crohn’s disease) forced him into the life of a session musician, where he excelled.
Nicky Hopkins was known as the Sixth Stone. His body of work with the Rolling Stones is immeasurable, ranging from “Ruby Tuesday” to “Waiting On A Friend”.
Nicky moved to Mill Valley, California to improve his health and took up with such San Francisco bands as The Jefferson Airplane and Jerry Garcia Band. He was considered a full-partner in Quicksilver Messenger Service and his touch played a fundamental role in Shady Grove and Just For Love.
The musicians he worked with over the decades were very taken with him.
“It was such a thrill to work for him as well as have him work with me. Every time I hear Joe Cocker’s ‘You Are So Beautiful’ I want to cry before Joe’s even come in. People try to emulate that piano piece, but there’s only one person could have played that—Nicky Hopkins.” – Peter Frampton