When you think about great live albums, several immediately come to mind. The Whos Live at Leeds. James Browns Live at the Apollo. The Allman Brothers Bands Live at Fillmore East. Kiss Alive! Nirvanas Unplugged. And, while it is sometimes unjustifiably forgotten, Little Feats Waiting for Columbus. The last essential album the rootsy California band made, it stands as the groups peak accomplishmenta staggering confluence of energetic performances, skilled improvisations, and thematic expansion.
Joined onstage by the Tower of Power horn section, Little Feat accentuates and remakes familiar arrangements, using the stage as a laboratory for unbridled creativity, New Orleans-spiced fun, and spontaneous interaction. Bursting with enthusiasm and excitement, Waiting for Columbus is truly a live album for the agesand one of a certain distinctive era.
The abundance of great music, the culture of drugs, and the politics of Richard Nixon, which had everyone polarized and created more of a sense of community, all contributed to this incredible feeling that somehow we were on a collective journey. Waiting for Columbus is one of the last parts of that journey, and among the last vestiges of that scene. Little Feat keyboardist Bill Payne, as told to Bud Scoppa
Amazingly, the set came together under less-than-ideal conditions. In the months leading up to the seven 1977 Washington D.C. and London concerts that were taped for the record, leader Lowell George had removed himself from the bands affairs. The chemistry was fractured, but the shows functioned as a molding agent. And did Little Feat ever respond. With every member of the sextet playing like their life depended on it, and a guest appearance by ex-Rolling Stone Mick Taylor, this is a must-have set.
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1. Join The Band (Traditional) 1:50
2. Fat Man in the Bathtub (George) 4:50
3. All That You Dream (Barrère, Payne) 4:25
4. Oh Atlanta (Payne) 4:09
5. Old Folks' Boogie (Barrère, G. Barrère) 4:22
6. Time Loves a Hero (Barrère, Gradney, Payne) 4:20
7. Day or Night (Payne, F. Tate) 5:23
8. Mercenary Territory (George, E. George, Hayward) 4:27
9. Spanish Moon (George) 4:49
10. Dixie Chicken (George, Kibbee) 9:00
11. Tripe Face Boogie (Hayward, Payne) 7:02
12. Rocket in My Pocket (George) 3:42
13. Willin' (George) 4:42
14. Don't Bogart That Joint (E. Ingber, L. Wagner) 0:57
15. A Apolitical Blues (George) 3:41
16. Sailin' Shoes (George) 6:18
17. Feats Don't Fail Me Now (Barrère, George, Kibbee) 5:17