Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Johnny Thunders & The Heartbreakers Unreleased Max's Kansas City 1979 & Show # 465

Following the breakup of Johnny Thunders & The Heartbreakers in 1978, Johnny Thunders headed to London to record his first full length album So Alone. When he returned to the US, the band decided to reform and play a series of live gigs (something that would happen periodically until Thunders death in 1991). Original Heartbreakers drummer Jerry Nolan did not want to take part in this initial set of reunion gigs so the band recruited drummer Ty Styx. These series of shows were recorded and resulted in the 1979 release Live At Max’s Kansas City, which would be released through Max’s Kansas City’s own Beggars Banquet Records. The recordings captured the band in good spirits and in all their loud, sloppy Rock and Roll glory. The album was so well received that a follow up live album was planned. The band got Jerry Nolan on board to play drums again and three live shows were planned and recorded once again. The results this time were for the most part unusable due to a number of factors, one being The Heartbreakers escalating drug use. There were only five usable tracks from this venture according to the some sources. The reason for this is on the third night of recording Johnny Thunders walked off the stage after the fifth song stating he had to “tune up”, but he never returned to the stage. The album was aborted and these tracks would later be issued on the reissued version of Live At Max’s Kansas City as bonus tracks on ROIR.

Another live recording has surfaced from 1979, one that has been bootlegged and available for sometime. This live recording was also at Max’s Kansas City and is a great performance featuring many songs not on the original Max’s Kansas City live album. This show was recorded on April, 28th 1979. This performance is also another quality performance and was an intended release, but it never saw the light of day officially. Commonly known as Johnny Thunders & The Heartbreakers Unreleased Max’s Kansas City 1979, this recording showcases numerous ramped up R&B covers and songs that would later be used on future Johnny Thunders solo releases. Notable songs on this bootleg include live versions of songs that weren’t on any official studio release at the time such as “Too Much Junkie Business”, “London Boys”, “M.I.A”, “Flight” and “Copycat”. For the covers there’s “Money”, “Do You Love Me”, “Seven Day Weekend” and two songs that would windup on Johnny Thunders 1978 So Alone album. Those tracks would be a cover of The Chantay’s Surf classic “Pipeline” and “Great Big Kiss” originally by The Shangri-Las.

While this album wasn’t officially released it adds to the mystery and aura that is Johnny Thunders & The Heartbreakers. Many of the songs found on this live bootleg showcase the band’s catalogue of songs that were building for sometime. The songs captured are rare as they were never officially released by The Heartbreakers and showcase the band’s live energy fusing a Chuck Berry meets Rolling Stones R&B Punk sloppiness. The songs would be spread out over Thunders future solo releases and even some (“Flight”, “Seven Day Weekend”) would end up being played by Walter Lure’s post Heartbreakers band The Waldos.

This video features "Two Much Junkie Business" from the very same 1979 Max's Kansas City show:

The Play List:

1. The Individuals – I Really Do
2. Shadows – Gathers No Moss
3. Johnny Cash – I’d Still Be There
4. Johnny Cash – What Do I Care
5. Lonesome Lefty - New Cocaine Blues (Tell It To Me)
6. The Polymorphines – The Clean and The Dirty
7. Sam Coffey and The Iron Lungs – Rick James Blues
8. Booker T – 66 Impala
9. The Danks – Octaganal
10. Seven Story Redhead – Shake It Out!
11. Dan Sartain – Swap Meet
12. Wavves – Demon To Lean On
13. Papermaps – Break
14. Wire – The Commercial
15. Wire – Used To Know
16. Diamond Rugs – Country Mile
17. The Rolling Stones – Far Away Eyes (Live in Texas 1978)
18. Legato Vipers – Chocolate Milk
19. Johnny Thunders & The Heartbreaksers – Pipeline (Live Unreleased Max’s Kansas City 1979)
20. Johnny Thunders & The Heartbreakers – M.I.A. (Live Unreleased Max’s Kansas City 1979)
21. The Black Lips – Make It (Live At Third Man Records)
22. The Cramps - She Said
23. Buzzcocks – I Look Alone
24. Young Rival – T-Shirt and Shorts
25. Young Rival - Modern Life

To download this weeks program, visit CJAM's schedule page for Revolution Rock and download the file for July 16. Or subscribe to Revolution Rock as a Podcast.

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